The Department of History is home to a culture of research excellence which is expressed in the scholarship of individual faculty, in ambitious collaborative ventures, and the vibrancy of postgraduate research. The range of expertise within the Department is considerable. The research interests of the faculty span the late medieval period to the twentieth century; incorporate Irish, European, Middle Eastern, American, and Australian history; and extend across the fields of political, social, and cultural history with particular strengths in urban history, Irish republicanism, diplomatic history, oral history, the history of family, the history of poverty, and early modern studies.
The research of the faculty is innovative and impactful. It is expressed in academic publications judged to be of the highest quality by peer reviewers. This includes the frequent publication of monographs, journal articles, book chapters, edited volumes, and special issues of journals. Members of the Department also disseminate their research through public lectures and symposia, newspaper articles, television documentary contributions, and the curation of exhibitions. Such endeavours highlight the Department’s focus on public history. The appointment of Caitriona Crowe, Senior Projects Manager at the National Archives of Ireland, as Adjunct Professor has underpinned this commitment as has the development of a ‘Public History Internship’ which is offered as part of the MA History, and our on-going collaboration with regional cultural institutions.
The Department has been successful in attracting external funding for individual and collaborative research projects. In recent years, for example, funding has been awarded by the Irish Research Council for a large project on ‘Irish Records Linkage, 1864-1913’ and, as part of the New Foundations Scheme, for a project to develop research infrastructure for early modern studies; a project to institute a Sound Heritage network for Ireland; and a project on hunger striking and internment, 1912-1923.
Research funding is also obtained from international funding bodies. Funding from the Research Council of Norway, for example, was recently awarded to a member of the department working as part of an international team conducting research on ‘Youth organisation and Cultural Heritage and Europeanisation’. The Department supports the collaborative endeavours of its members through the activities of the Centre for Historical Research and the Limerick Early Modern Studies Forum.
The Department’s international associations and activities are manifold. Faculty frequently present their research at international conferences, engage in international research partnerships, obtain international awards, and publish with international partners.
The faculty are also active in national and international scholarly societies and organisations: two members of the department are elected fellows of the Royal Historical Society (UK); two are elected Members of the Royal Irish Academy; another is elected to the Royal Society of Edinburgh; one colleague is a Director of the Irish Manuscripts Commission; another sits on the Heritage Council and the Advisory Board of the National Library of Ireland; one colleague is currently a Visiting Fellow at the University of St Andrews; another is a Fulbright Scholar. Such expertise, activities, and associations ensure that our research contributes to the research mission of the Faculty of Arts, Humanities and Social Sciences and to that of the University.