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Talking Towns

Talking Towns seminar series

Talking Towns is a seminar series organised by UCD Centre for Irish Towns and UCD Earth Institute. The series aims to spark conversations about the challenges facing Irish towns, the opportunities they offer, and the role of research and policy in bringing about the revitalisation of towns in Ireland. 

Starting in October 2021 the series runs over the academic year and over the course of the series features speakers from academia, policy making and civil society. Each seminar addresses a specific topic affecting Irish towns and will have two to three speakers, each presenting for ten minutes each with plenty of time for discussion afterwards.

Recordings of previous seminars are available on the CfIT YouTube channel and a full list of speakers is on the Talking Towns archive page. All seminars will be held on Zoom.

Talking Towns seminars Spring 2023 (online via Zoom)

Thursday 2 February, 1-2pm: Housing and Irish towns

  • Prof Michelle Norris (Geary Institute UCD), 'Social housing, social mixing and the future of Irish towns'
  • Niall Cussen (Office of the Planning Regulator) 'National Planning Objectives for Irish Towns: Implementation and Practice'
  • Chair: Dr Karen Keaveney (UCD School of Agriculture and Food Science)

Register via Eventbrite

Thursday 2 March, 1-2pm: Understanding place: data and towns

  • Phil Prentice (Scotland's Towns Partnership) 'Understanding Scottish Places'
  • Dr Adwoa Ofori (UCD School of Agriculture and Food Science), ‘Citizen Rural project’
  • Dominic Fahy (Geodirectory) 'Building Insights'
  • Chair: Dr Sarah Cotterill (UCD School of Civil Engineering)

Register via Eventbrite

Thursday 6 April, 1-2pm: Making art in the rural

Co-organised with Cultural Policy Observatory Ireland

This session will explore the circumstances, challenges and opportunities that making art in the rural presents for those living and working in and across the rural.

  • Dr Bernadette Quinn (Senior Lecturer in the College of Arts & Tourism, Technological University Dublin) 'Harnessing digital infrastructures to make art in the rural'
  • Dr Anthony Schrag (Senior Lecturer in Arts Management and Cultural Policy, Queen
    Margaret University, Edinburgh, Scotland) '"Not Solutions Focused": arts organisations operating in remote and rural areas - findings and discussions from the Rural Arts Network Scotland'
  • Dr Victoria Durrer (Ad Astra Fellow in Cultural Policy, UCD) and  Dr Aoife McGrath (Senior Lecturer, Queens University Belfast) 'Sites of Significance: Understanding the dance ecology in rural border areas'
  • Chair: Orla Murphy (Centre for Irish Towns/UCD School of Architecture, Planning and Environmental Policy)

Register via Eventbrite

Thursday 4 May, 1-2pm: The present and future of the High Street / Main Street in our towns

A 'Nations of Towns' seminar co-organised with University of Edinburgh.

  • Iain Scott and Mark Bingham (Edinburgh School of Architecture and Landscape Architecture, University of Edinburgh) ''Transforming Scotland's Towns-Reflections on 3 years of ESALA studios on Re-thinking the High Street’.
  • Giulia Vallone, (Cork City Council architect)
  • Tara Buckley, Director General of RGDATA (Retail Grocery Dairy & Allied Trades Association) 
  • Chair: Dr Philip Crowe (Centre for Irish Towns/UCD School of Architecture, Planning and Environmental Policy/Civil Engineering)

Register via Eventbrite.

Previous (Autumn 2022)

1-2pm, 13 October: Vacancy and Irish Towns 

1-2pm, 3 November - Transport and Mobility in Irish Towns

  • Dr Fatemeh Golpayegani (UCD School of Computer Science) ‘Why shared Mobility services are important and how AI can enhance the quality of such services’
  • Finola O'Driscoll (National Transport Authority) 'The Safer Roads To Schools programme'
  • Sarah Togher (Manager, Mayo Community Transport CLG T/A TFI Local Link Mayo) ‘TFI Local Link Mayo – creating sustainable solutions to connect people and places’
  • Chair: Dr Paraic Carroll (UCD School of Civil Engineering)

If you would like to contribute to a future seminar email cfit@ucd.ie.

Contact Centre for Irish Towns (CfIT)

University College Dublin, Belfield, Dublin 4, Ireland.
E: cfit@ucd.ie