Prof Patrick Paul Walsh spoke at the UN Sustainable Development Transition Forum (SDTF) in  Incheon, Republic of Korea on 29th - 31st October, 2018. 

The focus of the event was "Accelerating Progress towards the SDGs: Enhancing the Role of the High-Level Political Forum (HLPF)".

Prof Walsh spoke in Session 1: How can HLPF provide the most useful policy
guidance for SDG implementation? and Session 6: Data, Indicators, and Science for Tracking Progress on the SDGs.

The HLPF has the potential to create government lead global partnerships in a new wave of multilateralism. The success of national/regional level SDG partnerships are central to this vision. The Communique that came from the deliberations of the meeting can be found amongst the summary documents of the forum here

Competition and Welfare Effects of Differentiated Taxation: Evidence from the Irish Automobile Market

Anna Bennato, Franco Mariuzzo and  Patrick Paul Walsh (2018)

Centre for Competition Policy,  University of East Anglia,  Working paper 18-5.


In recent years, policy makers in developed countries have adopted taxation systems that attempt to curb consumers’ behavior away from a harmful lifestyle such as a tax on sugar content.


The papers develops a theoretical model to disentangle the effects on competition and welfare of the adoption of an ad valorem tax that varies according to product characteristics (quality) in an imperfectly competitive market. As an example of a market where taxation varies by product attributes, taxes increased with engines size, we use product-level yearly data on the Irish automobile market between 2004-2008 to explore the impact on competition and welfare of differentiated taxation by product characteristic.

Key findings

In the  Irish automobile market taxes increased with engines size but  did not lead to a significant shift in sales structure, as was its objective  Rather, it shifted profits and consumer surplus away from bigger and towards smaller engines, as a result of a tax-induced strategic change in the nature of short run price competition. Our analysis provides an understanding on the changes in short run price competition, sub-market sales and welfare structure, in a way that one can expect from taxing an environmentally unfriendly aspect of a product.  In the short-run, due to strategic price responses to the different levels of taxation, one sees dirty engines becoming cheaper and clean engines more expensive with no change in market share.  In the medium to long run, the tax structure may induce R&D that makes big engines clean pushing rents back up to big cars.  In the short run, the tax structure did not reduce harmful CO2 emissions in terms of global warming.

The Centre for Competition Policy (CCP), at the University of East Anglia, undertakes competition policy research, incorporating economic, legal, management and political science perspectives, that has real-world policy relevance without compromising academic rigour.

Full Paper and Policy brief attached.

Seréna Pilkington, a former student of SPIRe, has had a paper published by Cornell University's Cornell Cosmic journal. The paper is called A Space Oddity: The Impact of Emerging Space Nations on International Security
Seréna Pilkington is a recent graduate from the School of Politics and International Relations (SPIRe) at the University College Dublin, Rep. of Ireland. She completed her bachelors thesis on modern space relations with a focus on international security. She later won the UCD Tom Garvin award for highest graded thesis. She plans to pursue a Masters in International Security in 2018, with a special focus on space relations.

Ms Tahulela Aifani Confidence is a Masters graduate from Cape Peninsula University of Technology, Cape Town South Africa, She was awarded an Erasmus Mundus (AESOP) scholarship to visit UCD to explore PhD opportunities in UCD, and currently she is accepted to pursue Doctor of Philosophy (Social Sciences & Law) under the supervision of Patrick Paul Walsh. Her research interests are on Household Waste minimization initiatives, poverty reduction and the Sustainable Development Goals.

While she was in Dublin, she attended the Launch of The Sustainable Development Goals: National Implementation Plan 2018-2020 presented by Minister Denis Naughten.

She worked on her proposal with Prof Patrick Paul Walsh (Supervisor) where the research topic was provisionally accepted, Ms Tahulela Aifani’s future plan in terms of PhD is to pursue a UCD PhD won a joint program of work with North West University in South Africa, the PhD will be based on a three paper model. She will do six months of coursework and research in UCD and 6 months NWU till the completion of the program.

Provisional Thesis Title: Sustainable solid waste management in South Africa Cities: The potential of turning household waste into a resource for poverty alleviation in all its forms.


The Central Statistics Office (CSO) are currently recruiting  for the Graduate Placement Programme 2018/2019.

The CSO have a number of  opportunities in the following areas

  • Statistics/Data Analysis/Economics
  • Information Technology
  • Multimedia/Graphic Design/Digital Marketing
  • Environmental Science including Geographical Information Systems
  • HR/Legal/Finance/Business Process Improvement

Please see the link below to the competition:


Please note that the closing date for applications is 5pm, Tuesday 8th of May 2018

For further information regarding the competition, please contact Maria Looney at (+353) 21 4535158 or alternatively email graduateplacement@cso.ie

Apply here

A two-year full-time programme (or four years part time) that offers professional training in Sustainable Development Practice at graduate level. It is part of an internationally recognised affiliation of programmes working in line with Columbia University and the MDP (Master of Development Practice) Global Association (mdpglobal.org).

It prepares students to better identify and address the challenges of extreme poverty and sustainable development through excellent course offerings and placements.

Master of Public Administration in Development Practice brochure.

This is an ideal programme for recent graduates who plan to make a meaningful contribution to global poverty reduction and sustainable development practice. It also appeals to those already working in the sector of development who want to enhance their skill set and bolster their career.

Our central aim is to produce professionally trained graduates with both the theoretical insight and practical skills that will enable them to successfully pursue a career in international development practice to work in government, civil society or the private sector.

UCD Post-doctoral Research Fellow Level 1 or Level 2, UCD School of Politics and International Relations. Applications are invited for a Post-doctoral Research Fellow Level 1 or Level 2 in the UCD School of Politics and International Relations. This is a temporary post for 18 months.

The purpose of the role is to deliver a specific research project funded by the Irish Environmental Protection Agency (EPA). The project - Framework for Achieving Environmental Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) - will provide governance, reporting and data needs framework for transitioning Ireland towards achieving environmental targets for the SDGs. This will represent the first such attempt in Ireland and will establish an important benchmark for understanding future SDG requirements in the environmental area.

Salary: PD1: €36,854 - €42,603 per annum; PD2: €43,828 - €47,728 per annum.

Appointment on the above range will be dependent upon qualifications and experience.

This position may be appointed at either UCD Post-Doctoral Research Fellow Level 1 or Level 2 depending on the relevant qualifications and experience of the successful candidate.

Closing Date: 17.00hrs (Local Irish Time) on 16th April 2018.

UCD Online Job Application System.


UCD School of Politics and International Relations Seminar

Thursday April 12th in the UCD Newman SPIRe G316  at  1 pm

The International Development Civil Society Sector in Poland

Presenter     Dr Galia Chimiak, Polish Academy of Sciences.

Discussant  Prof Patrick Paul Walsh,  UCD School of Politics and International Relations

Dr  Galia Chimiak is an associate professor at the Institute of Philosophy and Sociology at the Polish Academy of Sciences. Her research interests are in societal self-organisation and international development cooperation. Galia Chimiak was a visiting fellow at UCD SPIRE. Her book “The Growth of Non-Governmental Development Organisations in Poland and Their Cooperation with Polish Aid” came out in Warsaw,  IFiS Publisher, 2016.

Read her blog post for this seminar on the SPIRe blog:  The international development civil society sector in Poland: from beneficiary to agent of change 

Article: The Growth of Non-Governmental Development Organisations in Poland and Their Cooperation with Polish Aid

Submit abstract with a chance of getting $2,000 for a full report.

19 January 2018

The secretariat of the consortium of Master’s in Development Practice Programs (MDP) at the Earth Institute's Center for Sustainable Development, Columbia University, NYC, invites abstracts exploring challenges in development education and practice. Abstracts should illuminate a specific issue (and may propose a solution) related to one of the following general themes:

  • What content knowledge is in greatest demand by employers in the development field today? Is demand being met?
  • What skills are in greatest demand by employers in the development field today? Is demand being met?
  • Are graduates of sustainable development programs (or MDP programs) prepared for today’s workforce?
  • Could other programs and degrees (e.g., specializations at the undergraduate and secondary school-level, or joint-degrees at the Master’s level) help meet demand? If so, how?
  • How can access to high quality sustainable development training be improved in the world’s developing and/or developed countries?
  • How can continued professional development be promoted across the field?
  • What should be the role of online education in development education?
  • How should the UN’s 17 Sustainable Development Goals be incorporated into curricula?
  • How are partnerships (particularly in the private sector) helping to move forward the implementation of SDGs and, by association, sustainable development in general?
  • How can sustainable development education be funded?

Contributors may include anyone in the development space: students, alumni and faculty of sustainable development programs; development professionals in private industry or non-profits; government leaders and independent experts. (Please note: student submitters must have a faculty co-author.)

Abstracts must be 300-500 words in English and be submitted online by March 15th. Each abstract may only be submitted once and under one theme. Failure to answer questions on the submission form or the submission of the same abstract under multiple themes is likely to result in the abstract being declined. The Secretariat will notify contributors by April 1st whether their abstracts have been selected or not.

Final Papers

For selected abstracts only, contributors will be given three months to develop a full paper, according to editorial guidelines that will be provided. Finished papers must be 4,000-6,000 words in length (excluding citations) and be submitted online by July 2nd, 2018. Contributors of papers that are submitted on time and according to editorial guidelines will receive a total of US$2,000 per paper, not individually.

Finished papers will help inform the Education for Sustainable Development Report, which will define priorities in sustainable development education for the coming decade. The Secretariat may excerpt or quote papers in the Report (with due reference to authors), or use papers indirectly in shaping the content of the report. All finished papers will be made freely available on the www.globalmdp.org website that will promote and disseminate the Report.

Here is the Master’s in Development Practice Programs (MDP) call for abstracts to explain submission process.


A Commission Report, released in October 2008, emphasized the need for a new type of “generalist practitioner” with cross-disciplinary skills in health sciences, natural sciences, social sciences and management. Based on this report, Columbia University led a consortium of institutions around the world in launching a new degree: Master’s in Development Practice (MDP). The global consortium now consists of 34 MDP programs in 23 countries, and continues to expand. Over 3,500 students have graduated with an MDP degree.

As the 10th anniversary of that landmark Commission Report nears, it’s time to take stock of the state of development education once again. The Secretariat, with guidance from a number of influential thought leaders led by Professor Jeffrey D. Sachs, will produce a report, to be released in January 2019. The new report will consist of high-level recommendations, and will be useful for a broad audience, including MDP institutions that want to review and update their programs; institutions that are considering adding a program in sustainable development; prospective students who want to understand the direction of development education; and employers across the field that want to hire and re-train staff to meet development goals of the future.

Timeline for submissions:

  • 15 January 2018 Call for Abstracts open
  • 15 March 2018 Deadline for submitting abstracts online
  • 1 April 2018 Abstract decision letter sent by email
  • 2 July 2018 Deadline for full papers (for selected abstracts only)

Education for Sustainable Development Report: call for abstracts


See  ICSD 2017 Columbia University  - Panel: Training Future Leaders on Sustainable Development


Since October 2017, the Joint Committee on Foreign Affairs and Trade, and Defence, has  undertaken a review of the Government’s official development assistance Irish Aid programme.

The review has included several meetings with stakeholders.  UCD's  Patrick Paul Walsh, Professor of International Development Studies had a meeting which is recorded  here.

The session was held on Thursday, 16 Nov 2017 and participants were: Session A - Patrick Paul Walsh, Professor of International Development Studies, UCD Session B - Ambassadors of the Federal Democratic Republic of Ethiopia; Republic of South Africa and the Republic of Kenya.

The full report and recommendations of the Joint Committee on Foreign Affairs and Trade and Defence, Review of the Irish Aid Programme, can be downloaded here.

The report makes twenty two recommendations that will feed into a new white paper on Ireland in the era of Sustainable Development.