Cross-border Cooperation in the context of the island of Ireland has been evolving, deepening and widening as a result of two primary public policy imperatives:
- The commitment to Cross-border Cooperation that is integral to the Belfast/Good Friday Agreement; and
- EU Cohesion Policy, with its focus on social, economic and territorial cohesion supported in particular through EU Territorial Cooperation programmes (i.e. INTERREG and PEACE) and from 2014 the mainstream Structural Fund programmes.
This policy context frames and give impetus to the work of the Centre for Cross Border Studies.
The Centre has a specific and unique role in contributing to the increased social, economic and territorial cohesion of the island of Ireland through:
- promoting and improving the quality of Cross-Border Cooperation between public bodies, and between public bodies, business and civil society;
- improving the capacity of people involved in social and economic development of the island to engage in mutually beneficial Cross-Border Cooperation; and
- addressing information gaps and other barriers that constrain cross-border mobility and cross-border cooperation through research and provision of resources, tools and other practical support.
High quality research and analysis, with an increased focus on applied research and policy, continue to be the Centre’s core activities. This research and analysis will inform and support the Centre’s advocacy for and promotion of cross-border cooperation on the island of Ireland and increasingly, our work in an EU and broader international context. The ability to provide independent, evidence-based information and analysis is fundamental to the Centre’s role as an essential resource for policy and decision-makers and cross-border practitioners.
Provision of services to cross-border projects and networks is an important strand of CCBS’ work. All the services offered by the Centre are complementary to the vision, mission and values of CCBS, supporting collaboration across borders. Other services such as the information provided by the Border People project and training and mentoring using the tools developed as part of our research programme are an integral part of our work of supporting and promoting cross-border mobility and cooperation.