The Ghassan Abou-Alfa and Eileen O’Reilly Medical Diplomacy Annual Lecture at Trinity College Dublin will raise awareness of medical diplomacy among students, faculty and invited guests.
Diplomacy is changing. Countries and their representatives no longer interact solely through traditional channels and diplomats no longer speak only to diplomats. The influence of independent actors on foreign policy is substantial. Physicians, well regarded across cultures may become the instrument of this forward diplomacy driven by a sense of moral justice and a desire to serve the most vulnerable populations. Health gives voice to the notion that whilst we may disagree, we do not always have to be in conflict when acting in accordance with common humanitarian principles.
In this inaugural lecture, HE Ambassador Dr Vincent O’Neill, Ireland’s Ambassador to Jordan, will draw on his experiences as a physician and diplomat over the past 30 years. As a small island in the west of Europe, Ireland has long defined itself by having an outward focus, reflected in the structure of our economy, the migration of Irish citizens worldwide, the contribution of generations of Irish people to international development, including in the field of global health. Over the past three decades, Ireland’s commitment to global health has deepened, and there has been greater engagement by the Irish Government, universities, organisations and individuals. The COVID-19 pandemic has highlighted the inadequacy in infrastructure and political will to address threats to global health and to the vulnerabilities of citizens, particularly in poorer countries.
Dr O’Neill will explore how Ireland can, and why it needs to, deepen its engagement and commitment – politically, diplomatically and technically – with global health over the coming years.
This webinar is produced by Trinity Development & Alumni.