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Church, State and Social Science in IrelandKnowledge Institutions and the Rebalancing of Power, 1937-73$
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Peter Murray and Maria Feeny

Print publication date: 2016

Print ISBN-13: 9781526100788

Published to Manchester Scholarship Online: May 2017

DOI: 10.7228/manchester/9781526100788.001.0001

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PRINTED FROM MANCHESTER SCHOLARSHIP ONLINE (www.manchester.universitypressscholarship.com). (c) Copyright Manchester University Press, 2021. All Rights Reserved. An individual user may print out a PDF of a single chapter of a monograph in MSO for personal use.date: 16 September 2021

The institutionalisation of Irish social research

The institutionalisation of Irish social research

(p.139) 5 The institutionalisation of Irish social research
Church, State and Social Science in Ireland

Peter Murray

Maria Feeney

Manchester University Press

Chapter 5 returns the focus to the social sciences. The injection of resources into Ireland’s scientific research infrastructure at the end of the 1950s created two new social science research producers – the Rural Economy Division of An Foras Taluntais and the Economic Research Institute. In the former rural sociology took a recognised place alongside a variety of other agriculture-relevant disciplines. In the latter the distinction between the economic and the social was a blurred and indistinct one. During the first half 1960s the unenclosed field of social research was to be the subject of a series of proposals from actors located within the Catholic social movement to a variety of government departments for the creation of research centres or institutes. This chapter details these proposals and the fate of consistent refusal with which they met. Empirical social research in Ireland was funded and organised in a manner that effectively excluded the participation of any Catholic social movement actor without a university base when the government approved the transformation of the Economic Research Institute into the Economic and Social Research Institute. This approval for a central social research organisation was crucially linked to the project of extending the scope of government programming to encompass social development as well as economic expansion.

Keywords:   Catholic social movement, Social research infrastructure, Social research centralisation, State economic planning, State social planning

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