Negotiating a Settlement in Northern Ireland, 1969-2019

ISBN : 9780198841388

John Coakley; Jennifer Todd
608 ページ
153 x 153 mm

Negotiating a Settlement in Northern Ireland: From Sunningdale to St Andrews uses original material from witness seminars, elite interviews, and archive documents to explore the shape taken by the Irish peace process, and in particular to analyse the manner in which successful stages of this were negotiated. Northern Ireland's Good Friday Agreement of 1998 marked the end a 30-year conflict that had witnessed more than 3,000 deaths, thousands of injuries, catastrophic societal damage, and large-scale economic dislocation. This book traces the roots of the Agreement over the decades, stretching back to the Sunningdale conference of 1973 and extending up to at least the St Andrews Agreement of 2006. It describes the changing relationship between parties to the conflict (nationalist and unionist groups within Northern Ireland, and the Irish and British governments) and identifies three dimensions of significant change: new ways of implementing the concept of sovereignty, growing acceptance of power sharing, and the steady emergence of substantial equality in the socio-economic, cultural, and political domains. As well as placing this in the context of an extensive social science literature, the book innovates by looking at the manner in which those most closely involved understood the process in which they were engaged. The authors reproduce testimonies from witness seminars and interviews involving central actors, including former prime ministers, ministers, senior officials, and political advisors. They conclude that the outcome was shaped by a distinctive interaction between the conscious planning of these elites and changing demographic and political realities that themselves were, in a symbiotic way, consequences of decisions made in earlier years. They also note the extent to which this settlement has come under pressure from new notions of sovereignty implicit in the Brexit process.


1 Introduction: defining moments in the British-Irish relationship
2 The Sunningdale Agreement, 1973
3 The Anglo-Irish Agreement, 1985
4 The Downing Street Declaration and Framework Documents, 1993-95
5 The Good Friday Agreement, 1998: negotiation
6 The Good Friday Agreement, 1998: implementation
7 Conclusion: benchmarks from the British-Irish process


John Coakley, MRIA, is Professor of Politics at Queen's University Belfast, and Fellow of the Geary Institute for Public Policy at University College Dublin. Recent publications include Nationalism, Ethnicity and the State: Making and Breaking Nations (Sage, 2012), Reforming Political Institutions: Ireland in Comparative Perspective (IPA, 2013), Breaking Patterns of Conflict: Britain, Ireland and the Northern Ireland Question (co-edited, Routledge, 2015), Non-Territorial Autonomy in Divided Societies: Comparative Perspectives (edited, Routledge, 2017) and Politics in the Republic of Ireland (co-edited, 6th ed., Routledge, 2018). ; Jennifer Todd, MRIA is a Fellow of the Geary Institute for Public Policy at University College Dublin. She has been Fernand Braudel visiting Fellow at the European University Institute (2016) and is presently Fellow of the Political Studies Association of Ireland. She is co-author of the classic Dynamics of Conflict in Northern Ireland (Cambridge 1996), and recent publications include Identity Change after Conflict: Ethnicity, Boundaries and Belonging in the Two Irelands (Palgrave 2018), and jointly edited volumes on Ethnicity and Religion (Routledge, 2011); Breaking Pattens of Conflict (Routledge 2015).