The Constitution Unit

The Belfast/Good Friday Agreement at 25: What Should London’s Priorities Be?

Episode Summary

This seminar explores what London’s role and priorities should be as the Belfast/Good Friday Agreement passes its 25th anniversary.

Episode Notes

As the Belfast/Good Friday Agreement passes its 25th anniversary, uncertainty remains over whether Northern Ireland’s power-sharing institutions will be restored any time soon. Debate has intensified over possible reforms, notably to how the Northern Ireland Executive is formed and to voting procedures within the Assembly. There are also differing views over the optimal forms of North–South and East–West engagement. The UK government has a vital role in shaping Northern Ireland’s future, but trust in it is exceptionally low across all Northern Ireland’s communities. In this seminar, a panel of leading authorities will explore the question of what London’s role and priorities should be.


Simon Hoare, Conservative MP for North Dorset and Chair of the House of Commons Northern Ireland Affairs Committee

Professor Cathy Gormley-Heenan, Professor of Politics and Provost of Ulster University

Baroness (Angela) Smith of Basildon, Shadow Leader of the House of Lords, Labour Spokesperson on Devolved Issues in the Lords, and former minister in the Northern Ireland Office

Alan Whysall, Honorary Senior Research Associate at the Constitution Unit, former civil servant in the Northern Ireland Office, and author of Northern Ireland’s Political Future

Chair: Professor Alan Renwick, Deputy Director of the Constitution Unit, UCL

Further reading: 
The Agreement at 25: A Time for Constitutional Change in Northern Ireland? - Alan Whysall