Dr Thomas Leahy

Dr Thomas Leahy

Lecturer

School of Law and Politics

Email:
leahyt1@cardiff.ac.uk
Telephone:
+44 (0)29 2068 8839
Location:
2.35, Law Building, Museum Avenue, Cardiff, CF10 3AX
Media commentator

I re-joined Cardiff University in September 2017 as a lecturer in British and Irish politics and contemporary history. My areas of specialism include the Northern Ireland conflict and intelligence war, Irish republicanism since 1969, Northern Irish politics since 1998, post-conflict reconciliation and dealing with the past, and British-Irish relations since 1969.

Education and qualifications:

2015 – History PhD, King’s College London.

2011 – Master of Research in Modern History (Distinction), King’s College London.

2010 – BA (honours) History (First-class), King’s College London.

Honours and awards

2016-2018 – Economic and Social Research Council impact initiator and accelerator account.

2016-17 – Irish Research Council Government of Ireland Postdoctoral Fellow at the National University of Ireland Galway, Republic of Ireland.

2016 – Scouloudi historical research award, London.

2014 - Political Studies Association Ireland postgraduate bursary award to present at their annual conference in Galway, Ireland.

2013 – King’s College London continuation scholarship for PhD studies, London.

2011 – The Worshipful Company of Bowyer’s best MA dissertation prize on a military historical theme, King’s College London.

Professional memberships

  • - Member of the Political Studies Association Ireland.
  • - Member of the Political Studies Association.

Academic positions

I was an Irish Research Council Government of Ireland Postdoctoral Fellow until September 2017 at the National University of Ireland in Galway, Republic of Ireland. In 2016, I worked for Cardiff University and taught a third-year module on the Northern Ireland conflict. I was awarded my History PhD at King’s College London in September 2015.

Speaking engagements

Speaking engagements:

I have presented my research to academic audiences at: King’s College London, the Political Studies Association Ireland Conferences in Galway and Belfast, the Irish historians in Britain conference in Edinburgh, the European Consortium of Political Research conference in Oslo (Norway) and the Divided Societies conference in Dubrovnik (Croatia).

Media appearances:

I have spoken on topics relating to northern and southern Irish history and politics to media outlets including BBC World Service Radio and TalkRadio.

I currently teach a third-year undergraduate module on the Northern Irish conflict. I also co-teach on the third-year undergraduate Parliamentary Studies module specifically about the Northern Irish Assembly since 1998, and co-teach seminars on the second-year undergraduate British Politics since 1945 module.

At Masters level, I teach a module on the Northern Irish conflict and politics, 1969-2018.

At previous institutions, I have also taught modern European history since the French Revolution to 1991.

I am happy to supervise research students in the following areas:

  • - Any aspects of the Northern Ireland conflict and peace process.
  • - Northern Irish politics since 1998.
  • - Dealing with the past and post-conflict reconciliation in relation to Northern Ireland or in comparison with Northern Ireland.
  • - The intelligence war in Northern Ireland or in comparison with Northern Ireland.
  • - Peace processes and negotiations to end small-scale conflicts in relation to Northern Ireland or in comparison with Northern Ireland.
  • - British-Irish relations.
  • - Irish Republicanism.

My research focuses on key aspects of the Northern Irish conflict and intelligence war between the IRA and British state, politics in Northern Ireland since 1969, and triangular political relations between Northern Ireland, the UK mainland and the Republic of Ireland since 1969.

I currently have a book under consideration based on updated research from my PhD on: ‘Informers, the Intelligence War, the Irish Republican Army (IRA) and British Counter-Insurgency Strategy during the Northern Ireland Troubles, 1969 to 1998’. This research involved extensive interviews with former IRA informers, former republican prisoners, British and Irish politicians and security force members, and cross-referencing these sources with extensive memoir and UK, Irish republican and Irish state archival material.

My other principal research project at present is entitled ‘Memory beyond borders: dealing with the legacy of the Northern Ireland conflict in the Irish Republic, 1969 to 2018’. This research considers the contribution of the Irish state towards dealing with conflict legacy in and about Northern Ireland. The conclusions are based on extensive interviews with British and Irish victims groups, civil servants, political parties, security representatives, and UK and Irish national archival papers.

Other current research projects include an article under consideration on why the past influences present politics in Northern Ireland and the Republic of Ireland, and an article on British, Irish Republican, Irish government and Ulster Loyalist political strategies in Northern Ireland in 1975.

I am currently collaborating with colleagues and also external stakeholders in the UK, Northern Ireland and the Republic of Ireland who participated or observed the Northern Irish conflict to ensure that my research achieves a significant impact beyond academia, particularly in relation to debates about dealing with conflict-legacy on the island of Ireland.

I have received funding for impact and research from the Economic and Social Research Council, the Irish Research Council Postdoctoral Government of Ireland Fellowship, the Scouloudi Foundation, Cardiff University and King’s College London.

Publications:

Leahy, Thomas. 2015. ‘The Influence of Informers and Agents on Provisional Irish Republican Army Military Strategy and British Counter-Insurgency Strategy, 1976–94’ in Twentieth Century British History, Vol.26, Issue 1, pp.122-146.

Leahy, Thomas and Ó Dochartaigh, Niall. 2018 (forthcoming). ‘Citizenship on the ethnic frontier: nationality, migration and rights in Northern Ireland since 1920’. In Steven G. Ellis (ed.), Enfranchising Ireland? Identity, citizenship and state (Dublin: Royal Irish Academy, 2018).

I am happy to supervise research students in the following areas:

  • - Any aspects of the Northern Ireland conflict and peace process.
  • - Northern Irish politics since 1998.
  • - Dealing with the past and post-conflict reconciliation in relation to Northern Ireland or in comparison with Northern Ireland.
  • - The intelligence war in Northern Ireland or in comparison with Northern Ireland.
  • - Peace processes and negotiations to end small-scale conflicts in relation to Northern Ireland or in comparison with Northern Ireland.
  • - British-Irish relations.
  • - Irish Republicanism.

Areas of expertise

External profiles