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Professor Michael Gallagher

Fellow Emeritus (Political Science)


Michael Gallagher is an Emeritus Fellow in the Department of Political Science (Professor of Comparative Politics 2006-21, Associate Professor 1998-2006) and was Head of Department for nine years in three separate spells (2005-08, 2010-13, 2015-18). He was a Lecturer (since 2012 this grade has been titled assistant professor) in the department 1979-1998. He was elected a Member of the Royal Irish Academy in 2013. He was a Visiting Professor in the Center for European Studies and Ireland House, New York University, 1997, a Visiting Professor in the Department of Politics and Public Administration, City University, Hong Kong, 2001, and a Visiting Professor at Sciences-Po Lille in February 2007. He did two degrees (a first degree and a masters) in Computer Science, emphasising the area of artificial intelligence and using in particular the specialist language POP-2, before switching to Political Science in the mid-1970s. His main areas of expertise are comparative electoral systems, political institutions, political parties, and Irish politics.
  Backgrounds, attitudes and activism of party members   Comparative European politics   Comparative political institutions   Electoral systems   Irish politics   Political parties
Details Date
Election analyst on RTE radio for general, European and local elections since 1979; contributor to newspapers, other media and on political issues
Co-director of two workshops at annual sessions of European Consortium for Political Research
Consultancy re Kazakhstan electoral system in Almaty (Alma-Ata) on behalf of National Democratic Institute
Presented papers at conferences in 15 different countries (Austria, Denmark, Finland, France, Germany, Hungary, Ireland, Italy, Japan, Netherlands, South Korea, Spain, Ukraine, UK, USA) 1980-
Joint editor, Irish Political Studies 1992-94
Expert witness before Oireachtas Joint Committee on the Constitution, November 2008 and November 2009
Expert witness at Constitutional Convention, Malahide, May 2013 and June 2013
Expert witness to Committee on Electoral Reform of Canadian House of Commons, July 2016; disproportionality formula subsequently held up for display by Minister Maryam Monsef in Commons chamber.
Language Skill Reading Skill Writing Skill Speaking
English Fluent Fluent Fluent
Details Date From Date To
Member, Political Studies Association of Ireland; President 1994-96; vice-president 1992-94; secretary 1988-92; committee member 1986-87, 2003-05;
Past or present member of editorial boards of journals including: Austrian Journal of Political Science, Electoral Studies, European Journal of Political Research, Irish Political Studies, Parliamentary Affairs, Party Politics, Representation
Member, Political Studies Association (UK)
Member, Elections, Public Opinion and Parties group (EPOP)
Member, Comparative Electoral Systems group of International Political Science Association, past committee member
Michael Gallagher, Michael Marsh and Theresa Reidy (eds), How Ireland Voted 2020: the end of an era, 1, Cham, Switzerland, Springer / Palgrave, 2021, 1 - 373pp, Notes: [The definitive analysis of Ireland's 2020 election; the ninth in the How Ireland Voted series], Book, PUBLISHED
The politics of referendums in, editor(s)David Farrell, Niamh Hardiman , Oxford Handbook of Irish Politics, Oxford, Oxford University Press, 2021, pp610 - 626, [Michael Gallagher], Book Chapter, PUBLISHED
The results analysed: the definitive end of the traditional party system? in, editor(s)Michael Gallagher, Michael Marsh, Theresa Reidy , How Ireland Voted 2020: the end of an era, Cham, Switzerland, Springer / Palgrave, 2021, pp165 - 196, [Michael Gallagher], Book Chapter, PUBLISHED
Elections and referendums in, editor(s)Daniele Caramani , Comparative Politics 5e, Oxford, Oxford University Press, 2020, pp178 - 192, [Michael Gallagher], Book Chapter, PUBLISHED
John Coakley and Michael Gallagher (editors), Politics in the Republic of Ireland, 6th ed, 6, Abingdon and New York, Routledge, 2018, 1 - 423pp, Notes: [6th edition of the main Irish Politics book ], Book, PUBLISHED  URL
Politics, the constitution and the judiciary in, editor(s)John Coakley and Michael Gallagher , Politics in the Republic of Ireland 6, Abingdon and New York, Routledge, 2018, pp57 - 85, [Michael Gallagher], Book Chapter, PUBLISHED  URL
The Oireachtas: president and parliament in, editor(s)John Coakley and Michael Gallagher , Politics in the Republic of Ireland 6, Abingdon and New York, Routledge, 2018, pp164 - 190, [Michael Gallagher], Book Chapter, PUBLISHED  URL
The constituency role of Dáil deputies in, editor(s)John Coakley and Michael Gallagher , Politics in the Republic of Ireland 6, Abingdon and New York, Routledge, 2018, pp191 - 215, [Michael Gallagher and Lee Komito], Book Chapter, PUBLISHED  URL
Dimensions of variation in electoral systems in, editor(s)Erik S. Herron, Robert J. Pekkanen, and Matthew S. Shugart , Oxford Handbook of Electoral Systems, Oxford and New York, Oxford University Press, 2018, pp23 - 40, [Michael Gallagher and Paul Mitchell], Book Chapter, PUBLISHED  URL
What do Irish voters want from and think of their politicians? in, editor(s)Michael Marsh, David Farrell, Theresa Reidy , The Post-Crisis Irish Voter, Manchester, Manchester University Press, 2018, pp190 - 208, [David Farrell, Michael Gallagher, David Barrett], Book Chapter, PUBLISHED  URL

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Award Date
MRIA (Member of the Royal Irish Academy) 2013-
President, Political Studies Association of Ireland 1994-1996
His main specialism in a comparative context is electoral systems, which could be very broadly defined as the set of rules that structure the way in which votes at elections are cast and then convert these votes into seats. He maintains an electoral systems web site at He is also interested in the role of political institutions generally. For a number of years he has worked on political parties, especially their internal organisation and the role of members within them. He has undertaken research on many aspects of Irish politics, and on a number of aspects of comparative European politics.