Steven Agnew’s achievement in North Down is a much more significant breakthrough for the Greens than even Brian Wilson’s election in 2007. For the first time the Greens have mustered a vote in a regional election entirely under their own steam, whereas Wilson was able to draw on a significant personal vote garnered as an independent candidate. There’s also a sense that Agnew will bring a strong and coherent Green Party voice to the Assembly, buoyed by likely victories in the North Down council elections. Former leader,John Barry, has polled strongly in Holywood.
The Green Party in North Down have offered the Greens across Ireland one piece of good news in what has turned out to be a disappointing year for their colleagues in the Republic, where the party is going through an existential crisis after their expulsion from Government and Dail Eireann.
I am a lecturer in sustainable development and governance at the School of Law, Queens University Belfast. I also conduct work at United Nations negotiations on the environment for the International Institute for Sustainable Development.
My book on the attention economy and mindfulness as commons was published by Routlege in June 2017. See A Political Economy of Attention, Mindfulness and Consumerism: Reclaiming the Mindful Commons (Routledge Studies in Sustainability)
My research interests include consumerism, green politics and the economy. I locate myself firmly to the left of the political spectrum. I write in a personal capacity.
Born in Donegal, I was raised in Derry and now reside in Belfast with my family.