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IN SITU Lab: In focus – the Western coastal periphery, Ireland

Photo: Nancy Duxbury

The Western coastal periphery of Ireland is a region that includes Galway County and City, Roscommon County and Mayo County and has a vibrant cultural and creative industries sector, particularly around traditional and contemporary music, theatre and performance as well as a significant cluster of film and television production companies. Galway City is known as a city of festivals with events taking place throughout the year including Film Fleadh, Galway International Arts Festival, Macnas, Cúirt International Festival of Literature, Galway International Oyster Festival and Baboró International Arts Festival for Children among many, many others. 

The west of Ireland is known for its natural beauty and the Wild Atlantic Way and Connemara attract international tourists throughout the year.  The University of Galway and the Atlantic Technical University are important Higher Education institutions in the region and together attract over 22,000 students. Galway City can be considered a ‘university town’ as nearly 28% of its population are students. There are also several Irish-speaking areas or Gaeltachts in the region. The preservation of Irish as a living, community language adds to the region’s distinctiveness. 

UrbanLab Galway is based at the University of Galway and has strong connections with local creatives and artists and other local actors. While each County and City Council in the region have developed their own arts and cultural strategies their efficacy is varied and often dependent on relations between local government and creative and cultural actors. However, accommodation shortages and a lack of supporting infrastructure remain concerns. In addition, mobility, connectivity and transport are also issues facing the sector.  


The IN SITU team members are: Patrick Collins and Mark Justin Rainey.

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