The Institute for Social Science in the 21st Century (ISS21)
The Institute for Social Science in the Twenty-First Century (ISS21) is a new initiative that seeks to build, sustain and enhance research on social, economic and cultural issues that will shape Ireland during the twenty-first century: •ISS21 brings together social scientists from a broad range of disciplines (including: Sociology; Applied Social Studies; Government; Geography; History; Law; Economics; General Practice; Epidemiology; and Applied Psychology) to pursue and conduct sponsored research at Irish and international levels. •It is affiliated to the Irish Social Science Platform (ISSP) which received significant funding under the the PRTLI4 research programme. •ISS21 also has a teaching and learning role in ISSP through its Graduate Education Programme (GREP) that has been designed to achieve interinstitutional co-operation and maximise expertise in a structured PhD programme. •A number of peer reviewed, international research projects, already established in UCC (eg projects funded by IRCHSS thematic grants, EUROCORES, PRTLI, the NDP etc) are and potentially can be affiliated to the new Institute. •The Institute will also build on projects established under previous rounds of PRTLI (eg round 1) that have already established UCC as a centre of excellence in the arena of social science.
to establish UCC as an international centre of excellence in research, publication and research training and contribute to social, economic and cultural research, both conceptually and methodologically;
to benefit from multi-disciplinary research and inter-institutional cooperation/networking; to engage with public, private and voluntary/community sectors and thus enhance understanding of social, economic and cultural transformation in Ireland within a larger global context; to put in place a collaborative social science research platform at UCC; to develop fourth level education in the wider Irish context
Research Strategy of the PRTLI4 funded Project:
•ISS21 is a constituent element of the Irish Social Sciences Platform (ISSP) established by PRTLI4. •ISSP is an all-island programme of theoretical, applied and comparative research and graduate training focused upon the core themes of Knowledge, Innovation, Society and Space, coherently linking together significant and well-established centres of social science expertise across a partnership of third-level institutions.
• The PRTLI4 ISSP project focuses on three inter-related areas:
•innovation and the building of the knowledge society/economy •social inclusion and the creation of sustainable communities;
•spatial strategies in promoting balanced development and competitiveness
Balanced Regional and Rural Development NUIG: Innovative rural development 1PD, 5 PhD
DCU: Innovation and industrial performance 3 PD, 4 PhD NUIG Innovative practice – towards the Knowledge Society 1 PD, 6 PhD NUIM/ITS/NUIG: Strategic development in the knowledge society 0.5 PI, 1 PD, 6 PhD
NUIG: Innovative ways to improved social inclusion for all in Irish society 4 PD, 12 PhD
NUIM/QUB/MIC: Spatial Interdependence and cross-border planning 0.5 PI, 1 PD, 3 PhD UL: Shaping technologies 1 PD, 3 PhD
NUIM/ITS: Communities in changing states 0.5 PI, 1 PD, 3 PhD
UL: Language, knowledge, technology 1 PI, 1 PD, 4 PhD
Filled by existing projects in NUIG, NUIM, UL, UCC
UL: Health sciences and technologies of the body 1 PD, 5 PhD UCC: Transformations and the Irish social model 3 PhD
The ISS21 component of PRTLI4 has two interconnected and complementary dimensions:
1. First, to design, construct and put in place the infrastructure necessary for the development of Fourth Level education in the Social Sciences in the form of a Graduate Education Programme (GREP). ISS21 has undertaken to develop a model for the curriculum, communications, virtual learning environments, elearning platforms and organisational and managerial/administrative systems that will enable the delivery of graduate education in the social sciences at UCC, UL, NUIM, DCU and NUIG.
2. Second, ISS21 through longstanding collaboration both here in UCC under the SECTRA umbrella and more recently with the ISSP has developed an interdisciplinary research programme on the Irish Social Model. This is organised around the central research thematic the social, economic and cultural transformation of contemporary Ireland (SECTRA), which encompasses the following thematics: Economic change and cultural transformation Migration Family, gender and sexuality Governance The transformation of the criminal justice system Work, wealth and well being
LOOKING AHEAD •These research clusters/networks, originally called SECTRA have, along with the GREP, been amalgamated into ISS21 and are part of the two strands of UCC’s contribution to the Irish Social Science Platform (ISSP) under PRTLI4. •However, ISS21 will also engage in extensive capacity building beyond PRTLI4 itself in the next few years. •Each research theme/network can be developed in consulation with the ISS21 Research and GREP Managers in order to apply for further significant research grants as they become available in the next four years and the activities we are all engaged in will grow •PRTLI5 presents with an opportunity to develop a new and additional ISSP collaborative project in the ISS21 and to upscale significantly