2016 - 3rd International Irish Narrative Inquiry Conference, March 10-11
Conference Organisers

NUI Galway

Dr Anne Byrne is a sociologist with an enduring interest in archival research, diaries and letters, ethnography, socio-biography, personal/collective visual and narrative inquiry as a practitioner and researcher. Inspired by collaborative, participatory and creative practices, Anne worked with socially engaged artists on projects with early school leavers [see Byrne, A. Canavan, J and Miller, M. 2007 Participatory research and the Voice Centered Relational Method of data analysis: Is it worth it? International Journal of Social Research Methodology 12,1, 67-77] and with histories of farming communities in the 1930s, using photography, film and exhibition spaces to engage in dialogue and knowledge exchange [see Byrne, Anne, and O’Mahony, Deirdre, 2013. ‘”Revisiting and Reframing the Anthropological Archive”, Irish Journal of Anthropology 16,1, 8-15]. Anne teaches, publishes and supervises research on gender, identity, family, equality, stigma and rurality [Byrne, A. 2014. ‘Single Women in Story and Society’ In Inglis, T. (ed) Are the Irish Different? Manchester University Press: UK and Byrne, A. Duvvury, N. Macken-Walsh, A. Watson, T. 2014. ‘Finding room to manoeuvre; gender, agency and the family farm’ in Pini, B. et al (eds), Feminisms and Ruralities, Lexington University Press: USA ] Recent publications on women and men’s epistolary  narratives include Byrne, A. 2015. ‘A Passion for Books; the early letters of Nancy Nolan and Leonard Woolf 1943-1944’, Virginia Woolf Miscellany, No 86, 32-34 and Byrne, Anne and Kovacic, Tanya, 2014. “Those Letters Keep Me Going: tracing resilience processes in US soldier to sweet heart war correspondences, 1942-1945” in Reid, H., and West, L., (editors) Constructing narratives of continuity and change: a transdiciplinary approach to researching learning lives, Routledge UK. Anne is a member of the Gender, Discourses and Identity research group (Gender ARC, http://www.genderarc.org), Vice President of The Sociological Association of Ireland http://sociology.ie and is Head of School, Political Science and Sociology, NUI Galway.

 Dr Bonnie Thompson Long Originally a middle school teacher from Los Angeles, California, Bonnie joined the NUI, Galway School of Education in 2000 where she has worked with pre-service teachers as an education technologist and teaching practice tutor. She has also worked with practicing teachers on the PDESEN and M. Ed. Programs. Bonnie completed her M.Sc. in Technology and Learning at Trinity College, Dublin, in 2008, and her Ph.D. in Education Technology at NUI, Galway in 2014.

Bonnie’s main research interest lies in the use of technology to enhance the learning experience of pre-service teachers. Her master’s thesis for Trinity College, Dublin, entitled, “ Online Communities on the MUVE: Using Second Life to build an Online Peer-support Community for Pre-service Teachers”, dealt with the use of the multi-user virtual environment (MUVE) Second Life, as a means of creating an online peer-support system for pre-service  teachers at NUI, Galway. Areas of interest included the use of computer mediated communication (CMC) with pre-service teachers, social presence, teacher presence, community connectedness and online community building.

Bonnie’s Ph.D. research focused on the use of Digital Storytelling as a method of enhancing student teachers’ ability to be reflective practitioners. Her thesis, entitled, “Designing Digital Storytelling: Creative Technology for Reflection in Initial Teacher Education”, examined the use of Digital Storytelling as a technology enhanced learning process for pre-service teachers, and investigated how creative ICTs and innovative pedagogies could be combined effectively to enhance reflection, creativity and engagement in practice learning. Areas of interest included reflection and reflective practice, storytelling and narrative in education, Digital Storytelling, autoethnography in teacher education and pre-service teachers’ use of technology.

 Dr Kathy Reilly’s expertise and central research interests straddle a number of arenas within critical geographic inquiry; these include: geographies of children, young people and families; geographies of education and social justice; and participative field-based research practice. To date her research has engaged communities in Ireland, France, UK, Bosnia and Herzegovina, and Canada. All of her research practice is principally underpinned by participative field-based methodologies, allowing for work with various communities in Ireland and globally. In doing so, she acknowledges the need to work with research communities within and beyond the academic, connecting with community collaborators, activists and practitioners across various interdisciplinary fields.

Further details of current research projects can be found here: http://www.nuigalway.ie/our-research/people/geography-and-archaeology/kathyreilly/

Dr Simon Warren arrived in academia after sojourning in community and adult education, and community arts for a number of years, as well training to be a teacher.  Simon took of post at NUI Galway in January 2014 following work in various universities including University of Sheffield, Birmingham University, South Bank University, Institute of Education (University of London), and Warwick University.  Simon’s research has focused on the interrelationship between education policy and identity formation, particularly that of professionals.  Simon’s current research focuses on two areas.  He is inquiring into the materiality of learning in higher education that draws on a combination of practice theory and posthuman philosophy to examine the human-non-human relationship in learning and teaching.  Simon is also engaged in his Broken Academic project that uses autoethnography to examine the relationship between academic wellbeing and neoliberal reform in higher education.  Here Simon is particularly interested in the way narrative and autoethnograpahic inquiry can work as forms of ‘care of the self’.  This project is moving towards follow-on work that curates academics’ autoethnographic accounts of living in the neoliberal university.

Gillian Browne is currently the administrator for the Global Women’s Studies Programme at the School of Political Science and Sociology and the UNESCO Child and Family Research Centre. Since joining the University in 2006, Gillian has provided support to the MA Gender Globalisation and Rights and the MA in Family Support Studies and works on a range of event management and operational areas. Gillian holds a BA in Business Studies from the GMIT, Galway and a Higher Diploma in Education from NUI, Galway.

Prior to commencing employment at the CFRC, Gillian worked in a number of administrative roles in the Health and Technology sectors.

Institute of Technology, Sligo

Jackie O’ Toole M. Soc. Sc is a Lecturer in Social Research, Department of Social Sciences, IT Sligo. I am a feminist sociologist with research interests in critical weight studies; gender, sexuality and social care; narrative research; human rights and LGBTQ. Co-convenor of the Narrative Inquiry Annual Conference with colleagues in NUIG and Maynooth University, I have published in the areas of narrative inquiry; women and dieting; gender and social care; and early childhood in Ireland.


Maynooth University

Dr Grace O’Grady is lecturer in Education and Director of the Master of Education and Postgraduate Diploma in School Guidance Counselling. She teaches on all the programmes in the Education Department in the curricular areas of Human Development, Developmental Psychology, Child Protection and Social, Personal and Health Education and Counselling Theory. Her PhD dissertation was a narrative inquiry into the discursive construction of identities in adolescence and she teaches and supervises narrative research on the Masters and Doctoral Programmes in the Department. She is Co-Leader of the structured PhD Programme and a founding member of the Centre for Transformative Narrative Inquiry (Dept. of Adult and Community Education and Education Dept.): https://www.maynoothuniversity.ie/education/centre-transformative-narrative-inquiry . Her current research is a Creative Narrative Inquiry into the shifting identity of teachers as they begin to situate themselves differently as guidance counsellors in the school landscape: https://www.maynoothuniversity.ie/education/more-about-our-research .  Full publication portfolio is available on the following link:  https://www.maynoothuniversity.ie/education/our-people/grace-ogrady