NUI Galway Professor to Deliver Lecture on Youth and Civic Engagement

Professor Pat Dolan, UNESCO Chair and Director of the Institute for Lifecourse and Society at NUI Galway
Apr 15 2021 Posted: 11:31 IST

Professor Pat Dolan, UNESCO Chair in Children Youth and Civic Engagement at NUI Galway will deliver the D’Arcy McGee Beacon Inaugural Fellowship Lecture, hosted by the University of British Columbia. The online lecture entitled Empathy Education: Intersectional Approaches to Youth and Civic Engagement’ will take place on Tuesday, April 20, 2021 at 6pm BST.

During his lecture Professor Dolan will discuss how empathy education in secondary schools and community youth programmes enables young people to be responsive to others and more responsible in their behaviour. Using methodologies such as training youth to be social researchers, or peer to peer learning through music, sport and literature are all crucial parts of empathy and compassion education.

Research has shown that these methods not alone can be woven into the classroom settings to reduce hate speech, racial profiling and other discriminatory behaviours by young people, but they also promote positive behaviour.

Speaking ahead of the event Professor Pat Dolan, NUI Galway, said: “While we know that empathy education is crucial for positively engaging young people in their families and communities, we should not have to focus on young people’s negative or riotous behaviours as a means of valuing them.

“The instances of violence involving youth from loyalist and nationalist communities in Northern Ireland last week is a serious concern. It occurs in the context of a segregated schools system in Northern Ireland, coupled with a lack of cross community empathy education, which if it did exist it could have helped prevent the violence that is based on a lack of understanding among young people who actually have far more in common in terms of their disadvantage.”

The lecture is free to attend and open to the public. For more details, or to register for the event visit: or email


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