State and civil society in Ireland: Conclusions and prospects
Murphy, Mary and Kirby, Peadar (2009) State and civil society in Ireland: Conclusions and prospects. In: Power Democracy and Dissent. Framer Ltd., Dublin, Ireland.
The end of Ireland’s economic boom provides an opportunity critically to assess the nature of the state-civil society relationship as it has evolved, and to offer perspectives on how it might change in the immediate future. This is the purpose of this chapter. It begins by summarising what the book has told us about the nature of the relationship between state and civil society in Ireland as we put the Celtic Tiger period behind us. The chapter then illustrates some examples of the consequences of the type of state-civil society relationship that became dominant in Ireland over the past two decades, identifying some worrying absences. The following section theorises the symbiotic relationship between state and civil society and how both have mutually constituted themselves with outcomes that are ever more evident throughout Irish society. The chapter finishes by mapping some alternatives about how the relationship could be transformed in a way that would be more beneficial for civil society and for Irish society more widely.
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