By C. Gormley-Heenan
Through supplying a serious interpretation of political management throughout the Northern eire peace method, Gormley-Heenan indicates the 'leadership lens' deals insights now not provided through traditional analyses of peacemaking procedures. The publication discusses the confusions, contradictions and chameleonic nature of management and its position, potential and influence.
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Extra resources for Political Leadership and the Northern Ireland Peace Process: Role, Capacity and Effect
Despite this, neither group of scholars sought to cross-pollinate from the other. This has resulted in the development of distinct and separate fields of study which hold much merit individually but could have provided an added richness to the study of both had they been pulled together. One of the problems with looking at political leadership in Northern Ireland is the need to cross-pollinate between the two literatures without being able to rely upon any prior inroads in this regard. The second issue relates to the theoretical underpinnings of some of the leadership literature and the peace and conflict literature.
67 The literature, which focuses on the more specific aspects of peace processes and peace agreements, postulates a number of necessary conditions for a successful outcome that move beyond the ‘change of leadership’ arguments. Most of these focus on the need for a strong leader and a motivation towards peace. 70 He argued that both sides, in such an instance, would be happy to maintain the conflict status quo, because they would lose nothing. Both might agree to the concepts of peace processes in theory because it shows some kind of movement on their part, but would not agree with peace agreements, per se, because it could require significant concessions down the road.
The weakness is that this argument places little emphasis on the reality that many ‘top leaders’ are adept at finding ways around 32 Political Leadership and the Northern Ireland Peace Process previously articulated goals when a process needs to move forward. The methods that leaders use in order to move from previously articulated positions have not really been examined. Some such methods, however, have been examined by Dixon in the case study of Northern Ireland. 57 Although he is certainly one of the most obvious, Lederach was not alone in his focus on leadership.
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