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Practice and policy lessons from Northern Ireland and the Border Counties
Author: Sandra Buchanan

Transforming Conflict examines lessons learned from the Northern Ireland and Border Counties conflict transformation process through social and economic development and their consequent impacts and implications for practice and policymaking, with a range of functional recommendations produced for other regions emerging from and seeking to transform violent conflict. It provides, for the first time, a comprehensive assessment of the region’s transformation activity, largely amongst grassroots actors, enabled by a number of specific funding programmes, namely the International Fund for Ireland, Peace I and II and INTERREG I, II and IIIA. These programmes have facilitated conflict transformation over more than two decades, presenting a case ripe for lesson sharing. In focusing on the politics of the socioeconomic activities that underpinned the elite negotiations of the peace process, key theoretical transformation concepts are firstly explored, followed by an examination of the social and economic context of Northern Ireland and the Border Counties. The three programmes and their impacts are then assessed before considering what policy lessons can be learned and what recommendations can be made for practice. This is underpinned by a range of semi-structured interviews and the author’s own experience as a project promoter through these programmes in the Border Counties for more than a decade.

The role of schools in Northern Ireland
Joanne Hughes and Caitlin Donnelly

(International Fund for Ireland and Atlantic Philanthropies) offered funding for the large-scale Sharing Education Programme (SEP) in Northern Ireland. Guided by reconciliation principles, a key aim of SEP is to facilitate sustained, curriculum-based contact. In this regard it seeks to bridge the gap between integrated schools, which are accessed by only a small minority of children, and

in Everyday life after the Irish conflict
Abstract only
Sandra Buchanan

A number of long-term conflict transformation funding programmes or tools have been operating in Northern Ireland and the Border Counties since 1986 under the guise of the International Fund for Ireland (IFI), the EU Special Support Programme for Peace and Reconciliation and the EU Programme for Peace and Reconciliation (Peace I, Peace II and Peace III), since 1994 and the

in Transforming conflict through social and economic development
Sandra Buchanan

backgrounds, administrative structures and activities. International Fund for Ireland Article 10(a) of the 1985 Anglo-Irish Agreement signed by the British and Irish governments states that ‘the two governments shall co-operate to promote the economic and social development of those areas of both parts of Ireland which have suffered from the consequences of

in Transforming conflict through social and economic development
Sandra Buchanan

extent of their effectiveness needs to be assessed in more detail. Some general observations will first be provided about each tool largely in terms of strengths and weaknesses. Each will then be assessed against the five criteria developed earlier in terms of impacts. The International Fund for Ireland – general observations Difficult beginnings

in Transforming conflict through social and economic development
An emplaced approach
Madeleine Leonard

(Gray and McAnulty, 2006 ). Backed by the International Fund for Ireland, there were also attempts to develop shared neighbourhoods across Northern Ireland, with statutory agencies working hand in hand with local communities to establish shared spaces (Goodlad et al., 2005 ). But there was recognition that these initiatives had to have grass-roots support and could not be forced on communities who

in Teens and territory in ‘post-conflict’ Belfast
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Europeanisation breakthrough
Boyka Stefanova

logic, the EC participated in the International Fund for Ireland (IFI) established following the Anglo-Irish Agreement (AIA) of 15 November 1985 for the purpose of encouraging contact and reconciliation between the two communities. The annual EC contribution amounted to 15 million ecus between 1989 and 1994, 17 million from 1995 to 1999, and 15 million euros from 2000 onwards (European Commission 2006

in The Europeanisation of conflict resolution
Sandra Buchanan

number of key lessons will now be examined in turn. International Fund for Ireland The implementation structures at the heart of the IFI have been its most valuable lesson. Its unique set-up, with an independent Board that could not be dictated to by government, with independent funding, the flexibility to draw up its own programmes and to decide on the

in Transforming conflict through social and economic development
Lessons from the health sector
Brian Ó Caoindealbháin and Patricia Clarke

the border. The EU, through its PEACE and INTERREG programmes, and other international funders, such as the International Fund for Ireland, have been the main source of support over the past two decades for civil society and community groups to engage in North-South activity, broadening participation and encouraging grassroots acceptance of the legitimacy of cross-border working

in Everyday life after the Irish conflict
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The politics of everyday life
Cillian McGrattan and Elizabeth Meehan

quality of the economic and social legislation giving effect to it. This is true not only within Northern Ireland, but it also impacts on those engaged in cross-border business and social cooperation, as is shown by the contribution by the chair of the International Fund for Ireland, Denis Rooney, to a recent IBIS/British Embassy roundtable discussion of North-South business relations (IBIS, 2010

in Everyday life after the Irish conflict