Wednesday, June 17, 2020


Professor Peter Gallagher, Eucharia Meehan, Ruairi O hUiginn and Professor Chris Bean

By Elizabeth lee

THE links between Carlow and the Dublin Institute for Advanced Studies (DIAS) are being explored as part of DIAS 2020, a year-long programme of activities marking the 80th anniversary of the institute.

When it was founded by Éamon de Valera in 1940, DIAS was only the second institute for advanced studies in the world (after the Institute for Advanced Study at Princeton in the USA) and the first such institute in Europe.

Over the past eight decades, DIAS has conducted ground-breaking research and attracted renowned academics from all over the world in its core disciplines of Celtic studies, theoretical physics, astrophysics and geophysics. The institute has pioneered space research in Ireland, revealed hitherto unknown facts about Celtic society and its legacy and contributed to greater global understanding of the underpinning mathematical principles of nature.

Donation to Carlow County Library

The DIAS 2020 campaign was launched at the beginning of this year and includes a range of activities and events to celebrate the 80th anniversary of DIAS’s establishment. As part of the campaign, DIAS is this month donating a copy of Ingenious Ireland to Carlow County Library – and to every county library across Ireland.

Written by the late Mary Mulvihill, a pioneer of science communication, Ingenious Ireland contains a county-by-county breakdown of intriguing inventions and discoveries, showcasing Ireland’s rich heritage of research, scientific curiosity and inventiveness.

They are planning a celebratory event, Christmas Stars, this December, which will bring together people with connections to DIAS, past and present.

Dr Eucharia Meehan, CEO and registrar of the institute, said: “Over the last eight decades, the researchers at DIAS have included refugees from Nazi Germany; scientists who worked on NASA’s first moon landing; the holders of prestigious international awards; and people who went on to contribute to Nobel prize-winning research. We have been lucky to attract leading academic talent, both from Ireland and further afield.

“Anecdotally, we know there are hundreds of families throughout Ireland who have strong DIAS connections and memories. In our 80th year, we are calling on any Carlow family or individual with a link to DIAS to get in touch with us and to attend our celebratory event at Christmas. If you had a parent, grandparent, aunt, uncle or long-lost family friend who worked at DIAS in the past, we want to hear from you!”

Families or individuals with a connection to DIAS can contact them at [email protected] / 01 6140100. Further information about DIAS 2020 is available at www.dias.ie/dias2020/

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