#TheReset Podcast: “Why can’t government do things (anymore)”?

Ed Straw has been in and around government and state led projects for a large part of his later working life. He has also been involved with the UK Labour Party using his trained engineer’s eye to look at how things work. His new book throws new light on the problem of poor “government agency”. Powered by RedCircle In it we cover: Governments are hooked on a systematic approach which assumes society remains as simple as it once was. This results …

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#TheReset: NI’s opportunity lies in attracting new people as well as new jobs

Today I spoke with my old friend and Lagan College alumnus Shane Greer, who now owns and publishes Campaigns and Elections Magazine and lives and works in Washington DC about whether in order for Northern Ireland to get a good reset we need to think more globally, not to mention bigly. The main impetus for the start of the discussion was his recent Reset essay on what he sees as a live opportunity to exploit the new home working arrangements …

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Siobhan O’Neill on the need to develop “pack leaders” at every level of society in our responses to Covid 19…

Now today’s Cargo of Bricks with Siobhan O’Neill, Northern Ireland’s mental health champion was recorded before this morning’s announcement of a four-week circuit breaker lockdown, which in reality is some way short of the near-total lockdown we had in Spring. But in today’s podcast, we cover what we have learned so far and what are the issues that come with facing the uncertainty of a second wave and trying to balance a number of factors external to the core concern …

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Covid has unleashed a vast global economic experiment, #CargoOfBricks…

In today’s Cargo of Bricks, we take our first look at how the southern economy is coping with the shocks to the labour market in particular. With my guest Dan O’Brien, chief economist at the IIEA in Dublin we cover… Powered by RedCircle It is absolutely impossible to read too far into the success or failure of what amounts to ‘the biggest social policy or political experiment in decades’. Government is able to hold to it’s massive intervention in the …

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#CargoOfBricks: Strategic response needed from Stormont for “education leavers”

The Reset In partnership with the Ulster Bank

One of the key reasons for having #TheReset project in a space like Slugger is to look behind the headlines and try to assay the effects of the Covid emergency, not just in health, but in other key areas of life. As we prepare for a second wave, the effects on those leaving education are acute. So this week I spoke to Professor of Education Tony Gallagher, to get his take on what that means in practice… Powered by RedCircle …

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#TheReset Podcast – Steve Bradley on the future of Derry…

Steve Bradley is a regeneration consultant, you can follow him on Twitter. Steve is a very popular writer on Slugger with some of his posts getting over 40k readers, you can view an archive of his posts here. In this podcast, we discuss the future of Derry and the Northwest. In particular, we discuss: The future of Ulster University in Derry or lack thereof The potential for an independent University How Covid-19 will affect Derry, in particular, fewer people having …

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#TheReset: What does Jürgen Klopp have to do with democratic renewal? #CargoOfBricks #Podcast

Do we need a re-set in political culture? We often tie ourselves in knots thinking that Northern Ireland is an exception to the rest of the world, but this week’s guest on #CargoOfBricks Richard Wilson’s experience is much broader and he thinks politicians are falling far short of current needs. Powered by RedCircle In it we cover… How our Victorian ideas of how representative democracy actually works are being quickly outrun by a connected electorate which is losing its patience …

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#TheReset: Sheer fluidity of technological change means our cultural industries should be more central than ever

It’s hard to think of a working sector in society that delivers quite so much social, cultural, and economic benefits to society at large but where the living for those talented individuals who often devote their lives to it is quite so precarious than in the Arts and Cultural industries. In today’s Cargo of Bricks, I speak to Ali FitzGibbon and discover how the long slow and steady bottom-up development of Northern Ireland’s cultural industries over the last thirty years …

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#TheReset: Time to wake up to Covid’s economic challenges and get beyond our long sleepy capture by the Status Quo…

And after a brief break after the first series of the Cargo Of Bricks, we start the second series in partnership with Ulster Bank with a brief introduction from Richard Ramsey to the Reset Project, an overview of where Northern Ireland finds itself regarding Covid and how to get involved in #TheReset. Powered by RedCircle In it he covers… How politicians need to take heart from their ability to work under the pressure of the crisis and change things that …

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#InConversation Podcast with Professor David Rooney from Queen’s about renewable energy and electric cars…

David Rooney is a Professor in the School of Chemistry and Chemical Engineering at Queen’s University Belfast. In this podcast, we chat about improvements in battery technology and how this will affect the growth of electric cars. We also discuss Hydrogen as a fuel source for transport. Already nearly 50% of the electricity generated in Northern Ireland comes from renewable sources and this figure will continue to rise. We discuss new ways of generating electric such as anaerobic digestion and …

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#InConversation podcast with Tim Attwood on the life and legacy of John Hume…

Tim Attwood was an SDLP councillor and party worker who knew John Hume well. We discuss Hume’s early years, the setting up the Derry credit Union as well and John’s business ventures with a Donegal Fish Smoking House. We move on to the importance Hume placed on his Irish American connections and how he saw it as crucial to get investment into Northern Ireland. We also discuss what Hume was like at a personal level. His sweet tooth and love …

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#InConversation podcast with Greg Keefe from Queen’s about rebuilding our cities and societies after Covid-19…

Greg is one of my favourite guests. He is a very imaginative thinker who really makes you see the world in a new light. He has a very down to earth casual manner that explains complex topics is an accessible way. You will be guaranteed to learn something interesting from our chat. Greg is Head of the School of Natural and Built Environment. He is an academic and urban designer with 25 years of experience. In this podcast we chat …

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#InConversation Podcast with Michael McCoy. From the Ormeau Road to Tokyo and other tales…

Michael is a regular in the comments, I thought to myself a chat with a Belfast guy who now lives in Japan would make a great podcast. Originally from the Ormeau Road in Belfast, Michael McCoy has lived in Japan for the past 30 years where he works as an executive coach. In this conversation, we discuss growing up in Belfast in the 1970s as well as getting his take on Brexit and what we need to do to stimulate …

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Cargo of Bricks Ep 10: How Social science can help NI politicians catch up with where the people already are and want to be…

Rosa Luxemburg once observed that without all the components of democracy (elections, unrestricted free press and assembly, and free struggle of opinion), “public life gradually falls asleep, and a few dozen party leaders of inexhaustible energy direct and rule”. In Northern Ireland we certainly have elections (three of them last year alone). But after twenty years plus of on/off institutions politics there’s a growing gap between the people and the political machines which appoint them to look after their interests. …

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#InConversation Podcast with Dr David Suitor – Dentistry and the challenges of Covid-19…

Open wide! this week I chat with Dr David Suitor who has been a dentist in Belfast for over 17 years. We chat about the general state of dentistry in Nothern Ireland as well as the specific challenges of Covid-19. Normally dentists can see 4 or 5 patients per hour but Covid-19 precautions have dramatically reduced the number of patients they can see. This has repercussions for the ability of patients to get treated as well as the financial viability …

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#CargoOfBricks: From library assistant in Oldpark to Smash Hits boss in four years…

Talking to a retired nationalist politician recently he recounted how important it was for him to get out of Belfast in the early days of the troubles to UCD and a Dublin in which society and its operants (arts, commerce, science) outsized the politics of the day. #CargoOfBricks and Brian’s In Conversation podcast series draw from a wider circle of sources share insights and stories that perhaps can have a fresh bearing on our lives in-the-round, not always through the …

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Busting Myths and Making the case for extending the franchise for Presidential Elections.

With the formation of a new Irish government and as we look toward recovery, I wanted to put together a discussion about Presidential voting rights for the diaspora. My panel had Ben Kelly from the VICA Campaign and Naomi O’Leary from the Irish Times and the Irish Passport Podcast.  “Áras an Uachtaráin” by jaqian is licensed under CC BY David McCannDavid McCann holds a PhD in North-South relations from University of Ulster. You can follow him on twitter @dmcbfs

#InConversation Podcast with Dr John Moriarty from Queen’s about changes to work patterns during Covid-19…

John is a fellow in the Centre for evidence and social innovation and a sociology lecturer School of Social Sciences, Education and Social Work at Queens University Belfast In this podcast we chat about the changes to the workplace from Covid 19. As well as the obvious downsides, there have also been some positive to the lockdown. People are commuting less, meetings now take place on video saving time and money etc We also talk about the challenges of working …

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#CargoOfBricks 8: Ruth Dudley Edwards on life in Lockdown London and getting “kettled” outside Downing Street

Episode Eight of #CargoOfBricks is with the Dublin born, London based commentator on both Irish and British politics, and crime writer. Initially, Ruth started as a lockdown sceptic, so I asked how she had managed what was probably the oddest period of disruption in our post-war lives, and what changed during the lockdown, for her and for the rest of us… Powered by RedCircle In a free-flowing conversation, she talks about… Although she began defiantly anti lockdown, ‘when the orders …

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#CargoOfBricks: Cooperation, looking outwards and maximising Northern Ireland’s advantage…

Episode Seven of #CargoOfBricks, is with Willie McCarter a man who brought Fruit of the Loom in from the US to expand his family business at a time when the Troubles were at their height and brought skilled jobs to both sides of the border: In it Willie tells us: In the early 80s, with high-interest rates as governments tried to get inflation under control, the business was getting crushed on cost and prices. With IDA support, they looked for …

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