President of NUI Galway Professor Ciarán Ó hÓgartaigh has been announced as the new President of Universities Ireland Council.
Universities Ireland was founded in 2003 by the nine university presidents on the island of Ireland to promote and develop cooperation between their institutions on a cross-border basis.
Professor Ó hÓgartaigh’s appointment was confirmed at a meeting of the council at the Royal Irish Academy in Dublin yesterday.
He takes on the role at a crucial time for the people living in both jurisdictions in Ireland, with continued challenges and opportunities which have shared solutions across the island in areas such as health, housing and the environment.
Professor Ó hÓgartaigh said that co-operation is central to the future of universities and their continued potential to make a difference to society and our economy, for the public good.
“Creating communities of scholars and students contributes to a greater understanding of each other’s challenges and a greater impetus to grasp together the opportunities that face us all,” he said.
“As we navigate a set of relationships in transition, we recognise that the issues we face are increasingly complex, cross-disciplinary and inter-generational.
“Research and teaching – universities on the island of Ireland – have a particular role to play in helping us to navigate social and economic change. These are better addressed together than apart.”
He said that we are a small island on the edge of Europe – but that we are at the centre of things, between continents.
“Valuing each other’s traditions, we look forward to working together – thegither – le chéile – with all our stakeholders, North and South, East and West, in further strengthening the ties that bind us and the future that we shape and share together.”
Prof Ó hÓgartaigh takes on the role at a crucial time for the populations in both jurisdictions in Ireland, with continued challenges and opportunities which have shared solutions on the island of Ireland in areas such as health, housing and the environment.