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Cairnes School/Whitaker Institute Inaugural Professorial Lecture Series – Professor Alma McCarthy

October 9, 2019 @ 1:00 pm - 2:00 pm

Speaker(s): Professor Alma McCarthy

Organised by: Whitaker Institute and J.E. Cairnes School of Business and Economics

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Attracting, managing, developing and retaining talent in the Irish public sector

Following several recent professorial appointments at the J.E Cairnes School of Business and Economics at NUI Galway, the Whitaker Institute in conjunction with the Cairnes School is pleased to announce the Cairnes School/Whitaker Institute Inaugural Professorial Lecture Series featuring our newly appointed professors.

Professor Alma McCarthy, recently appointed Professor of Public Sector Management will launch the series on Wednesday, 9 October.

Drawing on more than a decade-and-a-half of research expertise, Professor McCarthy will reflect on the key learnings from her research into public sector organisations in Ireland and discuss lessons from international best practice.  She will identify opportunities and challenges currently facing public sector organisations in relation to human resource and talent attraction, management and development.  She will also discuss how current demographic and societal trends are impacting human resource management in the public sector and will reflect on the likely future trends for which public sector organisations must plan.

Professor McCarthy will be in conversation with Tomás Ó Síocháin, CEO of the Western Development Commission (WDC). The WDC is the state agency tasked with advising the Government on policy for the west and has experience in senior management positions in other public sector organisations.


Professor Alma McCarthy (Cert. Executive Coaching, Dip. Training & Education, BBS & French, MCIPD, PhD) is Head of the Management Discipline and Professor of Public Sector Management in the JE Cairnes School of Business and Economics at the National University of Ireland, Galway. She has taught previously at the University of Limerick and Waterford Institute of Technology. She lectures in the areas of Human Resource Management, Organisational Behaviour, Leadership, and Learning and Development. Her research interests include public sector leadership and human resource development, training, work-life balance, and 360º feedback. Alma’s publications include: a number of articles in journals such as the International Journal of Human Resource Management, Human Resource Management Review, Personnel Review, Advances in Developing Human Resources, the European Journal of Training and Development, and the Journal of Managerial Psychology; papers at national and international conferences including the International Research group for Public Sector Management, European Academy of Management, the American Academy of Management, and the American Society for Industrial and Organizational Psychology; and co-authored books and several chapters in edited books. She is a Chartered Member of the CIPD, the American Academy of Management, the Society for Industrial and Organisational Psychology, and recently served as elected Vice-Chair and Chair of the Irish Academy of Management. She is an accredited member of the British Psychological Society (BPS) and certified to administer a broad range of cognitive ability, personality and occupational interest psychometric assessments.

Tomás Ó Síocháin holds degrees in law (B.Corp & LLB) a H.Dip in Applied Communications (Gaeilge) and an MBA from NUI Galway. Tomás is CEO of the Western Development Commission (WDC) which is the state agency tasked with advising the Government on policy for the west, using the Western Investment Fund as venture capital to support start-ups and helping SMEs to grow.  Prior to joining WDC, he worked as External Engagement Programme Manager in NUI Galway where he led the incorporation of Shannon College of Hotel Management into NUI Galway.  He was the inaugural Chair of the Regional Skills Forum West and is currently Chair of the Communications Committee of the Atlantic Economic Corridor Task Force.  He worked for over 14 years in public service broadcasting, as a broadcast journalist covering business, news and sport for RTÉ and as a programme editor working across Nuacht RTÉ and Nuacht TG4. He was Executive Producer of the 2011 TG4 General Election Leaders’ Debate and Presidential Debate and is an External Assessor for the Broadcast Authority of Ireland’s Sound and Vision Scheme.