Realising the potential for cross-border service provision
Lessons from the health sector
in Everyday life after the Irish conflict
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This chapter explores one potential mechanism through which formal, government-level, cooperation between North and South may influence ordinary people's lived experiences, namely, the provision of public services, with a focus on the health sector. It sketches the evolution of North-South relations, from the suspicion and avoidance of the early post-partition decades to the 1998 Belfast Agreement, and outlines current priorities and developments in cross-border cooperation. One of the most striking features of cross-border cooperation in the post-Agreement period, particularly when considered against the fate of the Sunningdale Agreement, has been the relative lack of political controversy. The tentative efforts, described to develop practical cooperation in the health sector demonstrate that cross-border service provision can be feasible, publicly acceptable and mutually beneficial. In addition to the continuance of parallel policy-making, experience in the health sector demonstrates significant structural constraints on cross-border working at administrative level.

Everyday life after the Irish conflict

The impact of devolution and cross-border cooperation



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