GSI President Niamh Moore Cherry with Honor Brigg & Tara Coakley accepting 2 prize for the 2016 Geoweek competition on behalf of their classmate Anaïs Dargnies of Rathdown Secondary School.
And presenting Rathdown Secondary School with the prize for the most entries to their Geography teacher - Mr David Drury!
Athena SWAN – Limits and Possibilities: How far can Athena SWAN take us towards gender equality in Irish higher education?
The next SWIG Ireland organised event has been announced. “Athena SWAN – Limits and Possibilities: How far can Athena SWAN take us towards gender equality in Irish higher education?” This event will be held from 4-6 pm on Wednesday 13 December, 2017at the Museum Room Theatre, Trinity College Dublin.
Dr. Claire McGing and Professor Pat O’Connor will be the key speakers. Dr. Claire McGing is currently the Athena Swan Project Officer at Maynooth University and a Lecturer in the Department of Geography at Maynooth University. She regularly publishes on gender representation in Irish politics, not only in academic journals but also in mainstream publications like The Irish Times. Dr. McGing’s paper is entitled “A Professional and Personal Reflection on the Athena SWAN Process” and will introduce the Athena SWAN award and illustrate her own personal and professional experiences of applying for the award itself.
Professor Pat O’Connor is Professor Emeritus of Sociology and Social Policy at the University of Limerick and a Visiting Professor at the Geary Institute at University College Dublin. She has written extensively about the role of gender in higher education management in leading publications and has authored or co-authored no fewer than 8 books over her illustrious career. Her paper is entitled “Creating Gender Equality at Organisational Level: What Makes the Difference?” In it, she will argue that leadership is the key element in creating gender equality, which may or may not coincide with interventions such as Athena SWAN.
The discussion will be moderated by SWIG Ireland Committee Member Kate Flood, a historical ecologist and geographer at National University of Ireland – Galway and Ph.D. student in the Department of Geography. After the two talks, Kate will facilitate a discussion with our two esteemed panellists followed by a general question and answer session.
As this will be SWIG Ireland’s first event as a membership-based group, we would like to welcome our new and prospective members to join for us a beverage at a venue TBD, but within walking distance of Trinity.
SWIG Ireland is launching it's formal membership and we invite you to join.
Membership in S.W.I.G. is welcome to anyone who identifies as part of the geography family, which we define as associated with the range of fields and practices within geography. S.W.I.G. welcomes members in all stages of their respective careers and members not currently employed by or directly affiliated with an academy.
Membership of S.W.I.G. is open to and will not discriminate for any reason.
Only members are eligible to stand for election to the S.W.I.G. committee.
SWIG members are invited to make an annual contribution to the group. There are three options for this fee, and members are invited to choose the contribution amount which is most feasible for them. The three options are €2, €5 and €10. These fee amounts will be fixed for the period 2017-2021.
Members who face difficulties in making a contribution may choose not to do so. Such members will not be excluded from the group or penalized in any way.
Members who may wish to make a larger contribution than those named above are also invited to do so.
We invite those interested in joining to fill out the following form:
Membership fees can be paid in person or by bank transfer, any difficulties please contact email@example.com
The call for sessions, papers and posters for the Royal Geographical Society (with IBG) Annual International Conference 2018 is now open. The conference will take place in Cardiff from Wednesday 29 to Friday 31 August 2018.
Prof Gillian Rose spoke to the GSI Postgrad and Early Career Network recently here is a copy of her blogpost about her recent chat with us at Maynooth University. The original can be found at
I visited the wonderful Department of Geography at Maynooth University a couple of weeks ago, and I was kindly invited by the Supporting Women in Geography Irelandgroup there to a discussion session about developing a career as an academic. I was sent a bunch of questions beforehand, which clearly articulated some of the key issues for this group: how to manage multiple demands to do different kinds of academic work, how to manage caring responsibilities with academic work, how to get on…
I don’t usually post about this sort of thing, though I do retweet about women’s experiences of academic life, on occasion. But the invitation and the questions gave me an opportunity to pull together a few thoughts around these topics, and also to reflect on how lucky I’ve been in my career: I’ve (almost) always had supportive line managers, I’ve never been asked to teach to the exclusion of research, I’ve never to have had to move from one fixed-term contract to another. I have though taken extended maternity leave and worked part-time for several years. So here, for what they’re worth, are seven things I think are important to make the time to think about and act on, to manage in pressured times. I’m sure there are more. But here goes:
The theme of the 49th CIG, ‘Disruptions and Transgressions’, aimed to provoke a rich and
varied discussion of the world and our discipline’s response to the ever-shifting social and
physical landscapes. Through the efforts of session organisers, this aim was not only meet
but exceeded with a broad range of papers and sessions address topics from across the
discipline and beyond. Several prominent strands ran through the conference illustrating
how Irish geographers and others are meeting contemporary social, political, and economic
challenges and opportunities.
Urban policies and the impact of the austerity of recent years were examined across several
sessions highlighting the on-going contestations of housing, urban governance, and the
spatial manifestations of neoliberal agendas. Physical geography sessions incorporated
discussions of climate change, upland environments, and coastal geomorphology, as well as
developments in Earth Observation. Also, the energy and food systems sessions provided
deep insights into the meeting of the social and natural, and how we are to address
challenges into the future. Art and geography made another distinct contribution to the
conference with practitioners, artists, and researchers sharing their work and providing a
creative insight into social issues, including Ireland’s asylum process, the treatment of AIDS
patients, and climate change. In addition, a range of other single sessions encapsulated a
significant breath of research from legal geographies to rewilding, and rural revitalisation to
health and nature.
The first keynote lecture, from Dr Bradley Garrett, University of Sydney, on the ‘Countering
Geographies of Dread’ was a resonant contribution provoking critical engagements with
issues of the privatised, public space, persistent surveillance systems, and spatial
inequalities. Situating his paper with a concern for neoliberal practices, he outlined his
theme of the ‘Geographies of Dread’ as a response to and engagement with a range of
interconnect threads which simultaneously erode privacy and the public. Professor Jenny
Pickerill, Sheffield University, gave the second keynote focusing on eco-communities and
the reconfiguration of place. Her participative approach to these self-build, self-organised
and collective enterprises illustrated how they involve new forms of nature-culture relations
and new social relations. These grassroot, ecologically and ideologically-driven projects
transform farmland to permaculture gardens, off-grid homes and learning spaces, which
present different forms of environmental futures.
The conference programme incorporated other events including a drone workshop and
meetings for the Postgraduate Network and Supporting Women in Geography (SWIG). In
addition, SWIG held an insightful panel discussion which raised numerous issues of
relevance to all working in research and university settings. The GSI Doctoral Research
Award session involved five recent PhD graduates presenting on their work in a ten minute
slot, with Dr Paul Alexander being presented as the winner at the conference dinner.
The 49th Conference of Irish Geographers was a very successful event, building on the
strengths of previous conferences and working closely with the GSI. Special thanks goes to
Dr Colin Sage, Conference Chair, and the academic and support staff in the Department of
Geography UCC for their role in the conference.
A special symposium organised by Met Éireann on "Future Weather, Future Challenges" will take place on the 12th of December. This event will include keynote talks by:
- President of Ireland (1990-1997), Mary Robinson,
- U.K. Met Office Chief Scientist (2009-2016), Professor Dame Julia Slingo
- Chair of the Climate Change Advisory Council, Professor John Fitzgerald
- Professor Peter Lynch, UCD Meteorology and Climate Centre.
There will also be presentations by meteorologists working at Met Éireann.
The symposium will include 3 consecutive sessions:
1. The Challenge of Change – responding to future weather
2. The Foundations in Science – building the edifice of meteorology
3. Where Climate and Weather meet Society – scientific, ethical and moral dimensions
It is free to register for this once-off event on December 12th in the Round Room at the Mansion House in Dublin. However, places are limited and early booking is recommended.
In the past few days a number of society members have been in the media discussing climate change and the increasing importance of geography.
John Sweeney wrote an article for the Irish Times regarding Hurricane Ophelia which can be found here and Richard Scriven also wrote to the Irish Times to outline the importance of geography in education which can be found here.
It is with great sadness that the Geographical Society of Ireland announces the death on 15th July 2017 of Emeritus Professor, Anne Buttimer, formerly of UCD . Anne was a noted scholar in the history and philosophy of geographical thought and practice and a leader in developments in human and cultural geography.
She graduated with a BA from University College, Cork in 1957, and her MA in geography was awarded in 1958. Her biography published as part of an interview with Avril Maddrell (2009) in the journal Gender, Place and Culture details the international flavour of her experiences beginning with her PhD from the University of Washington in 1965, "followed by a year as a post-doctoral fellow at the University of Louvain in Belgium, where she studied philosophy. Returning to Washington the following academic year, Buttimer was appointed Assistant Professor of Geography at Seattle University. She was then recruited to a post as Lecturer in Urban Studies at the University of Glasgow (1968–70), where she was part of an interdisciplinary team evaluating urban planning processes, drawing on her training in quantitative techniques and her interdisciplinary perspective (which included psychology from her education courses and philosophy from her time in Belgium). Her two years in Scotland were followed by an appointment initially as post-doctoral fellow (1970–71) and later as assistant and then full Professor of Geography at Clark University, Worcester, Massachusetts. Anne went on to work in the USA, Canada, Sweden and latterly Ireland, collaborating and publishing internationally. "
She became Professor of Geography at UCD in 1991 and 'retired' in 2003 but Anne never stopped working on her projects. She was Ireland's preeminent and internationally recognised geographer and accumulated a great many honours over her career, including becoming the first Irish President of the International Geographical Union (2000-2004). It was with great delight that Anne welcomed the news last summer that Ireland had won the bid to host the International Geographical Congress in 2024 and she was very much hoping to be part of the event itself.
The Geographical community extend our sincere condolences to her family and colleagues, at home and overseas, and we look forward to marking Anne's achievements and celebrating her legacy in different ways over the coming months and years.
Reference: Maddrell, A. (2009). An interview with Anne Buttimer: an autobiographical window on geographical thought and practice 1965–2005. Gender, Place and Culture, 16(6), 741-765.
We were recently asked about resources for kids that help raise their environmental awareness and get them involved in environmental projects. While we don't prepare these types of materials ourselves we have prepare a list of websites with resources or activities that may be of use.