CCBS Publications


The Centre has commissioned and published 22 cross-border research projects in the fields of telecommunications developments, health services, disadvantage in education, EU funding programmes, local government links, mental health promotion, waste management policies, local history societies, animal health, the euro, local sustainable development, diversity in early years education, science and citizenship education, environmental studies in primary schools, public sector training, hospital services, mental health research, government services to minority ethnic groups, impact assessment, the border region economy and North-South public service provision.

These projects involved researchers drawn from 14 universities, colleges, independent research centres and consultancy firms in Ireland and Britain: Queen’s University Belfast, University of Ulster, Dublin City University, University College Dublin, National University of Ireland Galway, National University of Ireland Maynooth, St Patrick’s College Drumcondra, Stranmillis University College, the Institute of Public Administration, Belfast City Hospital, Dundalk Institute of Technology, the London School of Hygiene and Tropical Medicine, Horwath Bastow Charleton, and the Centre for Cross Border Studies itself.

The research assignments under the North/South public sector training project (2004-2007) also involved civil and public servants from both jurisdictions. The Centre has published the following research projects, listed by most recent first.

Report coverDelivering a Prosperity Process: Opportunities in North/South Public Service Provision (2012)

This study by Dublin business consultant Michael D’Arcy proposed 10 areas of public service provision where it makes sense for the Irish and Northern Irish public sectors to cooperate for improved service delivery and ‘value for money’.

Its findings were based on private conversations with senior civil servants and business leaders in both jurisdictions.

Among the areas are a joint plan for economic and employment growth to target marginalised communities; an all-island Single Energy Market; North/South collaboration on public water supply; showcasing all-island business achievements, and an operational ‘tool box’ for public service managers working on a North-South basis.

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Report coverCross-border Economic Renewal: Rethinking Regional Policy in Ireland (2012)

This study by Dr John Bradley (formerly of the Economic and Social Research Institute) and Professor Michael Best of University of Massachusetts Lowell/Cambridge University examined the strengths and weaknesses of the economy of the Irish border region (with a particular focus on producing, and also on shopping and tourism).

It put the regional economy in the context of the history of Ireland’s two economies, the economic consequences of the ‘Troubles’, the island economy and development strategy frameworks.

It also proposed a new approach: a cross-border Border Development Zone, whose rationale would be based on the need for a uniquely targeted approach because of the region’s twin disadvantages of peripherality and the border policy ‘fault line’.

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Report coverUnlocking the Potential of CrossBorder Hospital Planning on the Island of Ireland: a prototype modelling framework (2011)

This study, carried out by Shane McQuillan and Vanya Sargent of the Dublin consultancy firm Horwath Bastow Charleton, explored the feasibility of developing cross-border acute healthcare services in a number of sectors, and outlined a prototype modelling framework for planning such services.

The five sample clinical service areas examined were

– orthopaedic surgery
– ENT surgery
– paediatric cardiac surgery
– cystic fibrosis and
– acute mental health care services.

The researchers concluded that there were significant barriers to providing such services on a cross-border basis, but these could be worked around (particularly at local level, and following the example set by the Cooperation and Working Together network), and there were particular opportunities presented by the new South West Acute Hospital in Enniskillen.

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Report coverImpact Assessment Toolkit for Cross Border Cooperation (2011)

This toolkit – the first of its kind in Europe – is particularly timely in light of the European Commission’s increasing focus on ‘Territorial Cooperation’ and ‘Territorial Cohesion’.

Cross-border impact assessment is intended to be a practical method to assist people planning cross-border programmes and projects. This first version is based on the Irish crossborder experience, but can be adapted to other European border regions.

The toolkit will help to determine whether a cross-border approach is the appropriate level of intervention and, if so, to identify the ‘added value’ of crossborder cooperation. It will also identify the added value that has come about as a result of the cooperation process itself: e.g. the building of new cross-border relationships.

The toolkit was devised and developed by a team lead by CCBS Deputy Director Ruth Taillon along with Dr Joachim Beck and Sebastian Rihm from the Euro-Institut in Kehl, Germany.

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Report coverExploring the Potential for CrossBorder Hospital Services in the Irish Border Region: the role of community involvement in planning hospital services (2010)

This study by CCBS Deputy Director Ruth Taillon features feedback from 11 focus groups in the border region and case studies of service users and campaigning community groups in three areas:

– cancer care in the North-West
– cystic fibrosis in the two jurisdictions; and
– the campaign for a hospital in Omagh.

Among the recommendations are that Patient and Public Involvement (PPI) concepts in hospital planning should be properly implemented and that service users from both jurisdictions should be involved in the planning of new services at Altnagelvin (Derry/Londonderry) and Enniskillen hospitals.

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Report coverMental Health: The Case for a CrossJurisdictional Approach combining Policy and Research Efforts on the Island of Ireland (2009)

This study by Dr Patricia Clarke of CCBS explored the context of and challenges to the reform of mental health services (and related research) in Northern Ireland and Republic of Ireland.

It compared the two main mental health documents – the Bamford Review in the North and A Vision for Change in the South – in order to identify similarities and differences in policy approach in the two jurisdictions, highlighting areas of common concern, priorities for research and the gaps which exist.

This work was carried in association with the Mental Health Commission (RoI), Cooperation and Working Together (CAWT) and other agencies in the mental health field.

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Report coverPride of our Place (2007)

The research report of this cross-border environmental project for primary schools was written by Mary Burke of St Patrick’s College Drumcondra.

The project brought together 10-12 year olds from a group of primary schools in Louth, Monaghan, Cavan, Tyrone, Armagh and Down to study key environmental features in their locality by looking at it historically and geographically, and then exploring it in the company of their cross-border partner schools.

The Chief Inspector for Northern Ireland, Marion Matchett, called the project’s final event in Armagh

‘a wonderful event, made all the more so by the children’s enthusiasm, interest and expertise…you have every right to be proud of the project’s achievements.’

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Report coverRemoving the Barriers: An Initial Report on the Potential for CrossBorder Cooperation in Hospital Services (2007)

This short report compared the planning of hospital servicereorganisation, North and South. It noted that there are different strategies in the two jurisdictions, with Northern Ireland placing greater emphasis on travel time and the Republic on the size of the catchment population.

The authors, independent Belfast researcher Dr Jim Jamison and Dr Michelle Butler, Senior Lecturer in UCD’s School of Nursing Midwifery and Health Systems, point to the clear scope for joint hospital planning and rationalisation in the border region to benefit the health of the population.

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Report coverThe Wind Across the Border (2007)

This report brought together six award winning research assignments carried out by pairs and teams of officials as part of the North/South and Cross-Border Public Sector Training Programme.

They were on

– the proposed reopening of the Ulster Canal;
– an all-island service for the recycling of waste fridges and freezers;
– expanding the CAWT-sponsored eMed renal information system to the whole island;
– an all-island visitor pass for heritage sites;
– setting up a cross-border training and accreditation system for installers of renewable energy technologies; and
– cross-border sharing of patient electronic records.

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Report coverImproving Government Service Delivery to Minority Ethnic Groups (2006)

This study, funded by the Office of the First Minister and Deputy First Minister in Northern Ireland (with additional funding from the Joseph Rowntree Charitable Trust and the British Council), examined how public services such as health, education, policing and employment support are provided to minority ethnic groups in Northern Ireland, Republic of Ireland and Scotland.

It had a particular focus on how Northern Ireland’s public authorities could learn from their nearest neighbours. The research work was carried out by a partnership led by the National Consultative Committee on Racism and Interculturalism (NCCRI), together with Piaras MacEinri from University College Cork, the Institute for Conflict Research in Belfast and Organisation and Social Development Consultants in Edinburgh.

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Report coverCitizenship and Science: The Connecting Axes (2005)

The final report of the EU-funded Citizenship and Science Exchange (CaSE) Schools project looked at how a group of 12-14 year old students in 16 schools on both sides of the border deepened their understanding of the dynamic relationship between science and citizenship.

The students explored subjects such as

– air and water pollution
– waste management
– GM and fair trade foods
– renewable energy and
– energy efficiency.

Much of the cross-border work centred on a shared Web resource. This project was led by Professor Peter McKenna and Dr Charlotte Holland of Dublin City University.

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Report coverDiversity in Early Years Education North and South: Implications for Teacher Education (2004)

The aim of this EUfunded study was to identify the difficulties facing teachers and children in areas of inter-community conflict and tension on both sides of the Irish border with a view to developing a framework for preparing young teachers working with children in the early years.

It was carried out by researchers at St Patrick’s College Drumcondra in Dublin and Stranmillis University College in Belfast, Mairin Kenny and Helen McLaughlin, under the direction of Philomena Donnelly and Louise Quinn.

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Report coverTowards a Green Isle? Local Sustainable Development on the Island of Ireland (2004)

A study of local sustainable development as carried out (through the Local Agenda 21 process) by local authorities and social partners throughout Ireland, by a cross-border team comprising Geraint Ellis and Dr Bill Neill of the Queen’s University Belfast’s School of Environmental Planning, and Dublin-based researchers Una Hand and Brian Motherway.

It found that 54% of local authorities on the island had begun a process of LA21, but stressed that the main challenge is to move from debate to action.

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Report coverThe Local History Project: Cooperating North and South (2003)

This study, by Dr Jacinta Prunty, Dr Raymond Gillespie and Maeve MulryanMoloney of National University of Ireland Maynooth, provided the basis for the first all-Ireland register of local history societies.

They identified 330 societies, but estimated that a complete list would exceed 500 societies, North and South, involving an active membership of perhaps 28,000 persons.

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Report coverPromoting Mental Health and Social Well-being: CrossBorder Opportunities and Challenges (2002)

This is a two-part study by a team from National University of Ireland Galway led by Dr Margaret Barry and Ms Sharon Friel.

It examined a number of cross-border projects in the areas of postnatal depression, public awareness of suicide, cancer support services, the mental health of young men and mental health in rural communities.

The study also looked at the comparability and compatibility of mental health data sources in the two jurisdictions.

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Report coverThe Foot-and-Mouth Disease Crisis and the Irish Border (2002)

A study of the crossborder dimension of the 2001 footand-mouth disease outbreak by the Centre’s research manager, Dr Patricia Clarke, with comments from the Departments of Agriculture in Belfast and Dublin.

Issued exactly a year after the original outbreak in England, the report’s findings were praised by the two Ministers, Brid Rodgers and Joe Walsh, as “extremely valuable” in helping the Departments to formulate actions to deal with animal health emergencies.

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Report coverCross-Border Co-operation in Local Government: Models of Management, Development and Reconciliation (2001)

A study by Professor Derek Birrell and Amanda Hayes of the University of Ulster of the different kinds of cross-border links between local authorities, including

– one-to-one linkages
– local government crossborder networks, and
– cross-border partnerships involving other agencies.

It also analysed the project management methods used, the views of the councillors involved and the involvement of the European Union.

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Report coverCreating Living Institutions: EU Cross-Border Co-operation after the Good Friday Agreement (2001)

A study by Professor Brigid Laffan and Dr Diane Payne of the Institute for British-Irish Studies at University College Dublin, which analysed the interaction between the North-South Institutions set up under the Good Friday Agreement – notably the North/South Ministerial Council and the Special EU Programmes Body – and the EU’s funding programme for crossborder co-operation, INTERREG.

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Report coverIreland’s Learning Poor:Adult Educational Disadvantage and Cross-Border Cooperation (2001)

A study of the needs of the more than a million people on the island who left school with few or no qualifications by Dr Mark Morgan of St Patrick’s College, Drumcondra, and Mr Paul McGill, formerly education correspondent of the Belfast Telegraph.

They concluded that current policies in both jurisdictions were far removed from a vision of lifelong learning which allows people of all ages and social classes equal access to education and training.

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Report coverCross-Border Cooperation in Health Services in Ireland (2001)

A study of the past, present and potential for future co-operation in health services across the Irish border by a research team led by Dr Jim Jamison, formerly director of the Health and Social Care Research Unit at Queen’s University Belfast, and including Professor Martin McKee of the London School of Hygiene and Tropical Medicine, Dr Ciaran O’Neill of the University of Ulster, and Ms Michelle Butler of the Institute of Public Administration in Dublin.

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Report coverThe Evolution of Telecom Technologies: Current Trends and Near-Future Implications (2001)

A number of case studies of developments in mobile and wireless telephony across the Irish border from a research team led by two of Ireland’s leading specialists in information retrieval, data analysis and image and signal processing:

– Professor Fionn Murtagh, then of Queen’s University Belfast, and
– Dr John Keating of National University of Ireland Maynooth.

The project was sponsored by eircom.

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