Ulster Unionist Economy Spokesperson John Stewart MLA has expressed his disappointment that the Economy Minister has not sought to encourage Northern Ireland’s Universities to fund doctorates or post doctorate research and study relating to the Centenary of Northern Ireland.
John Stewart MLA said:
“With the Centenary of Northern Ireland fast approaching, a number of events have already been announced and many others are in the planning stages.
“Dublin City University recently advertised a Post Doctoral Fellowship on the future of the island of Ireland, and given that next year will mark the Centenary of Northern Ireland, it would seem logical that Northern Ireland universities would be sufficiently interested in the subject to facilitate in depth study and research.
“I tabled a question (attached) to the Economy Minister to ask if she had held discussions with our local Universities in Northern Ireland with regard to the availability of funding for doctorates or post doctorate research and study relating to the Centenary of Northern Ireland.
“You would have thought that this topic might have been of some interest to a Unionist Minister, but I regret to say that her response was less than encouraging. It may well be the case that ‘the Universities have discretion to allocate the studentships based on their respective internal assessment criteria’ but it surely isn’t asking too much to expect a Unionist Minister to at least make the suggestion that the Centenary of this State is worthy of consideration as a topic of research and study?”