Paul Arthur is Professor Emeritus of Politics at the University of Ulster and the former Director of its Graduate Course in Peace and Conflict Studies. He has been a Senior Research Fellow at the United States Institute of Peace, a Fulbright Scholar at Stanford and the Joan B Kroc Peace Scholar at the University of San Diego.
In public life he served as UTV’s political analyst and contributed as an op-ed contributor to the Irish Times for two years. He developed a series of problem-solving workshops with Northern Ireland’s political parties over a period of fifteen years. He was a member of the Kilbrandon Commission in 1984 and an adviser to the Saville Inquiry in 1998. His research interests have included the politics of Northern Ireland, British-Irish relations and the nature of political violence. His books include Special Relationships: Britain, Ireland and the Northern Ireland problem (2000).
Roy Foster was born and educated in Ireland; he has been professor of Modern British History at Birkbeck College London, and since 1991, Carroll Professor of Irish History at the University of Oxford and a fellow of Hertford College. He is the author of many books on the political, social, cultural and literary history of Ireland, including Modern Ireland 1600-1972 (1988), Paddy and Mr Punch (1993), The Irish Story (2001), and Luck and the Irish: a brief history of change c 1970-2000 (2006). He has also written the two-volume authorized biography of W.B.Yeats, The Apprentice Mage (1997) and The Arch-Poet (2003). His most recent book is Words Alone: Yeats and his Inheritances (2011), based on his 2009 Clark Lectures at Cambridge.
He is a Fellow of the British Academy, an Honorary Member of the Royal Academy of Ireland and has received honorary doctorates from the University of Aberdeen, Queen’s University Belfast, the National University of Ireland, Trinity College, Dublin, and Queen’s University, Ontario, as well as an honorary fellowship of Birkbeck College, University of London. He is also a well-known cultural commentator and critic.
Maurice Hayes, MRIA
Maurice Hayes was for many years Northern Ireland Ombudsman, and has played a prominent part in public life there and in the Republic. His public roles include Town Clerk of Downpatrick, and Permanent Secretary of the Department of Health and Social Services (N.Ireland); he has also served as Chair of the Community Relations Council and served on the Patten Commission on Policing in Northern Ireland. From 1997 to 2007 he sat as a Senator in Dail Eireann.
He has been awarded honorary degrees from Queen’s University Belfast, Trinity College Dublin, the University of Ulster and the National University of Ireland. He is a frequent columnist and reviewer for the Irish Independent and other publications, and the author of three books of memoirs, Sweet Killough: Let Go Your Anchor; Black Puddings with Slim: A Downpatrick Boyhood; and Minority Verdict: Experiences Of A Catholic Civil Servant. He is also the author or editor of works on conflict research, community relations and Irish writing.
Catherine Heaney was born and grew up in Dublin, and received her BA and MSc from Trinity College Dublin. She worked as a journalist for many years at magazines in Dublin and London and was a regular book reviewer for The Irish Times. Since the early 2000s, she has worked in publishing, as an editor at Fourth Estate and more recently at Faber and Faber, where she ran the creative-writing school Faber Academy. She now works as a freelance writer and editor, and has recently compiled the fourth volume of Trinity Tales, to be published by The Lilliput Press in autumn 2016. She is a member of the curatorial panel of the Borris Festival of Writing and Ideas, and lives in London.
Ian McBride grew up in County Armagh and was educated at Oxford and University College London. He has been a research fellow at Corpus Christi College, Cambridge, and since 2000 he has taught at King’s College London, where he is Professor of Irish and British History. His books cover various aspect of modern Irish history and include The Siege of Derry in Ulster Protestant Mythology (1997), Scripture Politics: Ulster Presbyterians and Irish Radicalism in the Late Eighteenth Century (1998), and Eighteenth Century Ireland: The Isle of Slaves (2009). He is convenor of the ‘Conference of Irish Historians in Britain’, which meets every two years, and of the ‘London Irish Studies Seminar’.
Onora O’Neill combines writing in political philosophy and ethics with a range of public interests and activities. She comes from Northern Ireland and has worked mainly in Britain and the US. She was Principal of Newnham College, Cambridge from 1992-2006, President of the British Academy from 2005-9, chaired the Nuffield Foundation from 1998-2010, and has been a crossbench member of the House of Lords since 1999 (Baroness O’Neill of Bengarve).
Her books include Constructions of Reason, Autonomy and Trust in Bioethics and A Question of Trust (the Reith Lectures). She currently lectures and writes on accountability and trust, on science policy, on justice and borders, and on questions about the future of universities, the quality of legislation and the ethics of communication.
Thomas Pakenham is an Irish historian and arborist who has written several prize-winning books on the diverse subjects of British and Irish history and trees. He was closely involved in the establishment of the Memorial Prize after the death of Christopher Ewart-Biggs in 1976. His books include: The Year of Liberty: The History of the Great Irish Rebellion of 1798, The Boer War (winner of The Cheltenham Alan Paton Award), The Scramble for Africa (winner of the WH Smith Literary Award) and Meetings With Remarkable Trees.