Ireland’s industrial history as reflected in the largest manufacturing employers at EEC accession

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Guest speaker: Frank BarryProfessor of International Business, Trinity College Dublin

Seminar topicIreland was one of the least industrialised countries in Western Europe at the foundation of the state in 1922 but had achieved a substantial degree of convergence in economic structure by the time of EEC accession in 1973. The present paper provides details of the largest manufacturing firms in Ireland at the latter date. Already by then the share of foreign-owned firms was high by international standards.  Each of the various phases of the country’s economic history since the industrial revolution and the integration of the Irish and British economies in the 19th century is found to have left a legacy. The paper also reveals the significance of several phases whose distinctiveness has gone unrecognised until now. 

Speaker bioFrank Barry is Professor of International Business and Economic Development at the Trinity Business School.  He holds a PhD in Economics from Queen's University, Ontario, and has held academic positions at the University of California, the University of Stockholm and the University of New South Wales, and with the Harvard Institute for International Development.  He has worked as a consultant for the World Bank, the European Commission and various UK and Irish government departments, and is a research associate with the Nairobi-based African Economic Research Consortium.  His main research is in the areas of foreign direct investment and Irish economic and business history.