Associate Professor Catherine Cox wins UCD 2020 Impact Competition 

The School congratulates Catherine on winning the UCD 2020 Impact Case Study Competition.

Her case study '‘Out of sight, out of mind’:  changing public perceptions of the mental health crisis in Irish prisons’ emerges from her work as co-PI on the Wellcome Trust Award ‘Prisoners, Medical Care and Entitlement to Health in England and Ireland, 1850-2000’. The project is a partnership with co-PI Professor Hilary Marland, University of Warwick.

Catherine, with Postdoctoral Fellows Dr Fiachra Byrne and Dr Oisín Wall, collaborated with artists, theatre groups, cultural institutions, dedicated advocates and imprisoned people on a series of creative events, including the award winning play ‘The Examination’, two arts installations and a museum exhibition. These co-created public history events communicated with large audiences so as to foster awareness of the mental health crisis in the criminal justice system, past and present.

Her partners and collaborators included Brokentalkers, Dublin-based theatre company; Dr Sinead McCann, visual artist; the Irish Penal Reform Trust; the Bridge Project, Dublin; PACE; the Education Unit, Mountjoy Prison, Dublin; Talking Birds, a Coventry-based theatre group; and Kilmainham Gaol Museum, Dublin.

Fíona Ní Chinnéide, Irish Penal Reform Trust noted the work ‘played an extremely valuable role in humanising the men and women in prison and places of detention. It helped audiences see beyond the crimes committed and the demonization of certain groups of people, their families and their communities, to focus instead on our common humanity and frailty’.

Congratulations to all for their wonderful work.