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Seanad: Higher Education Authority Bill 2022: Committee Stage (6 Jul 2022)

David Norris: I move amendment No. 1: In page 11, to delete lines 29 and 30, and in page 12, to delete lines 1 and 2. I understand the Cathaoirleach with his usual graciousness will allow me to make a general statement.

Seanad: Higher Education Authority Bill 2022: Committee Stage (6 Jul 2022)

David Norris: Today is the 40th anniversary of the death of Terence Higgins after whom the Terence Higgins AIDS trust was founded. It is worthy of note by Seanad Éireann in view of the tragic consequences of that epidemic. I would like also to recognise and thank my colleague, the vice-chancellor of University of Dublin, Dr. Seán Barrett, who is with us today in the Visitors Gallery. He is a...

Seanad: Higher Education Authority Bill 2022: Committee Stage (6 Jul 2022)

David Norris: This 142-page Bill has serious implications for Ireland because it will make Ireland a country that will not tolerate even one autonomous university. This is about autonomy. Trinity College Dublin, TCD, in particular, has a very distinguished historical background, as, of course, has Maynooth University, which was founded in the days before Catholic Emancipation. The Bill is a power grab...

Seanad: Higher Education Authority Bill 2022: Committee Stage (6 Jul 2022)

David Norris: Excuse me-----

Seanad: Higher Education Authority Bill 2022: Committee Stage (6 Jul 2022)

David Norris: My script says perhaps they should have a chat.

Seanad: Higher Education Authority Bill 2022: Committee Stage (6 Jul 2022)

David Norris: The Department of Enterprise, Trade and Employment’s annual budget is just short of €900 million. IDA Ireland and Enterprise Ireland firms employ some 475,000 people. The agencies do not appoint people to the boards of the enterprises they finance. The reward to Irish society is the employment they create, rather than seats on these companies' boards. Should the reward to...

Seanad: Higher Education Authority Bill 2022: Committee Stage (6 Jul 2022)

David Norris: Let the record show that the Minister is shaking his head.

Seanad: Higher Education Authority Bill 2022: Committee Stage (6 Jul 2022)

David Norris: It has been guillotined.

Seanad: Higher Education Authority Bill 2022: Committee Stage (6 Jul 2022)

David Norris: Who guillotined it then?

Seanad: Higher Education Authority Bill 2022: Committee Stage (6 Jul 2022)

David Norris: That is not how they see it.

Seanad: Higher Education Authority Bill 2022: Committee Stage (6 Jul 2022)

David Norris: I move amendment No. 2: In page 12, between lines 7 and 8, to insert the following: “ “academic member” means a member of An tÚdarás who, at the time of his appointment as such member, held an academic post; “academic post” means a post in an institution of higher education (other than a post as chief officer) all or part of the duties of the...

Seanad: Higher Education Authority Bill 2022: Second Stage (28 Jun 2022)

David Norris: Bong.

Seanad: Higher Education Authority Bill 2022: Second Stage (28 Jun 2022)

David Norris: We all do.

Seanad: Higher Education Authority Bill 2022: Second Stage (28 Jun 2022)

David Norris: I have never smoked with a bong in my life. Give me a joint any day.

Seanad: Higher Education Authority Bill 2022: Second Stage (28 Jun 2022)

David Norris: Trinity College is.

Seanad: Higher Education Authority Bill 2022: Second Stage (28 Jun 2022)

David Norris: On 8 June 2021, the President of Ireland, Michael D. Higgins, stated: It is not an overstatement, I believe, to make the argument that the ruination of the university tradition, by a process of attrition, surrender to the quiet hegemony of that which is really unaccountable, is at hand. Indeed the very raison d'êtreof the university, I believe, is at stake. That is a very...

Seanad: Higher Education Authority Bill 2022: Second Stage (28 Jun 2022)

David Norris: Alas. What a pity. May I point out to the previous delightful speaker that Trinity is the highest ranked university on this island? We were proud that at one point it was ranked 50th or thereabouts globally. Given that there are universities like Oxford, Cambridge, Dartmouth, Yale and Harvard, that was a wonderful position for a small island like this to be in. In terms of diversity, this...

Seanad: Higher Education Authority Bill 2022: Second Stage (28 Jun 2022)

David Norris: Very good. Well done. There is some confusion in this provision and it should be cleared up. Despite the Minister's undoubted intelligence - he is probably the most intelligent person in government-----

Seanad: Higher Education Authority Bill 2022: Second Stage (28 Jun 2022)

David Norris: There is a blush.

Seanad: Higher Education Authority Bill 2022: Second Stage (28 Jun 2022)

David Norris: All of that said, I am not sure how much experience the Minister has in higher education apart from being a student. Perhaps he has that experience. The joint committee wrote: It is widely recognised that legislative reform will be of limited value unless it is accompanied by a sustainable funding model. The HEA, as part of its core remit, must retain a key role of advising the Minister...

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