This is an edited collection featuring contributions from a range of leading Irish scholars in the fields of Sociology, Social Policy, Criminology and Urban Geography. Limerick city currently has the highest crime rate in Western Europe and contains the areas of most severe urban deprivation in the Republic of Ireland. The collection seeks to explore how this profound social exclusion emerged and critically assesses proposed solutions to this social disadvantage including the Regeneration programmes. The evaluation of social exclusion in Limerick also provides a key opportunity to link the Irish experience of social exclusion to European and American literatures on ghettoization and urban poverty.
In 2007, following the Fitzgerald Report, the Irish government launched a 500 million euro project for the Regeneration of areas of severe deprivation in Limerick City. The establishment of these projects, though greeted with great public acclaim, was in many ways, an acknowledgement of the failure of successive public policies to tackle the complex sets of problems which existed in Limerick. Although the Regeneration process is now in full swing, there is evidence that the approach being adopted by state agencies is not drawing comprehensively on the body of research which already exists on social deprivation in Limerick. Understanding Limerick: Social Exclusion and Change seeks to address this gap by gathering together recent expert research on Limerick which draws on a range of theoretical and disciplinary perspectives. By piecing together these expert perspectives, it is argued that the severely deprived in Limerick have experienced a range of different forms of social exclusion which have intersected in an almost unique way to create the current crisis in some neighbourhoods.
Contributors to this text have expertise in a range of research fields including sociology, social policy, planning and urban regeneration, gender and ethnicity studies as well as law and criminal justice perspectives. This edited collection provides not only an overview of available research on Limerick but also attempts to establish how lessons learned from evaluating social exclusion in Limerick might contribute to broader national and international policy debates.
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Date of Publication: 22/06/2011