Gather up your bailing twine - it's time for the National Ploughing ChampionshipsLeft a bit...

Gather up your bailing twine – it’s time for the National Ploughing Championships

It’s the largest exporter per head of population in the world and one of the ten most innovative nations on earth, but what was the most read story on its business pages this morning?  Why, the National Ploughing Championships.  Ireland, dear reader, is still a rural country at heart. One of the advantages for a townie like me of heading for […]

Doheny's pub, DublinBehind these doors lies greatness. Pic credit: the talented Patrick Donald

What’s the pub-ulation of your town?

Among the joys of blogging about cities are the random discoveries that illuminate the quirks of our urban life – such as how you can map the British Isles through the number of pubs in each town.  How much fun is that? Let me presage this blog with a big hat-tip to Tris Brown, who runs the office of Mayor Anderson here in […]

LuasDublin's stylish Luas trams. There aren't enough of them. Not nearly enough, in fact.

Traffic management is Dublin’s new ideological battleground

There used to be a saying in Irish politics that the first item on the agenda of any new group was the split. According to the Irish Independent Dublin’s latest ideological battleground is the politics of traffic management – and things aren’t going well, as Dougal Paver discovers. Anyone familiar with Dublin will know what a traffic-choked hell-hole it can […]

Dalkey Co DublinCastle Street in Dalkey: welcome to suburban bliss

Urban villages: cities’ great engines for localism

Great cities value their urban villages – and the best retain their unique character and charm. They’re a force for civility and engines for economic localism, provided institutional property ownership hasn’t turned them in to clones, suggests Dougal Paver. Back in the day I spent just over three years in Dublin, on and off, and fell hard for the city. It […]

Skibbereen digital hubSkibbereen in County Cork: an unlikely test bed for the digital economy

Digital hubs not just for the urban realm

Digital connectivity has become something of a watchword for urban planners, for reasons that need no rehearsing here. The absence of a mega pipe to everyone’s door is such a source of competitive disadvantage that central governments and local authorities the world over are finding the money to fund the necessary infrastructure.  And where they can’t, the private sector is […]