About the Project

Who is conducting this study? 

The Centre for Disability Law and Policy (CDLP) at the National University of Ireland, Galway is researching the lived experience of people with disabilities in exercising their legal capacity. The Principal Investigator is Dr. Eilionóir Flynn, Deputy Director of the Centre for Disability Law and Policy, and Senior Lecturer at the School of Law, National University of Ireland, Galway. The project is funded by the European Research Council.

What is this research about and what does it involve?

The purpose of this research is to look at how people with disabilities are treated by the legal system when they want to make their own decisions – known as ‘legal capacity.’ It means being recognised as a decision-maker by the law and making decisions that the law requires other people to respect.

The project involves a series of workshops and conferences, bringing together people with disabilities and people who write about how law and policy affects people with disabilities. At the end of the project we will publish a book with people’s stories and ideas about how the law should change. Taking part in the project does not mean that you have to publish your story or idea in the book. Taking part in the project just means that you are willing to come to the conferences and workshops and be open to sharing your ideas and experiences with other people. If you would like to publish something in the book at the end of the project, we will discuss how to do that at the workshops.

The conferences at the beginning and end of the project will be open to the public. Each of the 6 workshops in the project will have a meeting open to the public on the first day, and will have private meetings on the second day so that people can have a safe space to discuss their personal experiences and how they think the law might need to change to give them more freedom to make their own decisions.

A provisional timeline of events can be found here.