Postgraduate Activity at the NCFIS



1. Part of a vibrant international network;
2. Possibility of funding through national or European networks;
3. Close one-to-one supervision (or co-supervision/co-tutelle with French universities) in a pleasant working environment;
4. Access to the expertise of visiting lecturers;
5. Excellent publication opportunities and the possibility of gaining editorial experience through the postgraduate online journal Jofis (jofis1);
6. Regular postgraduate seminars (journées d’études) which facilitate dissemination of research ideas;
7. Attendance at annual AFIS (Association of Franco-Irish Studies) conferences and delivery of papers.


 ‘The NCFIS encourages innovative ideas and the analysis of contemporary texts as well supporting new approaches to well-established material.’
‘For my research the NCFIS was the ideal choice since I received supervision from experts in the field who were committed to a collaborative approach, meaning that I had access to specialised perspectives on the Franco and Irish side, and in terms of textual and theoretical frameworks.’
‘Researching at the Centre means becoming part of a vibrant culture which values multidisciplinary knowledge and which is at the core of a network of international, academic links. The research environment at the NCFIS is inclusive, with many opportunities for presenting research and an active background in publishing.’
‘My main reason for choosing the NCFIS was the opportunity to work with Dr. Eamon Maher, one of the leading scholars in John McGahern Studies, on a research project that sought to place the writings of McGahern within a wider European literary and philosophical canon.’
‘From my first day at the NCFIS, I received dedicated, professional supervision and was encouraged to take an active part in the Centre’s research activities and outputs. This was an important factor in my decision to study at the NCFIS as it enabled me to progress and mature as a postgraduate researcher.’
‘The Centre is not only a collaborative research hub for academics and postgraduate researchers in Ireland, it has also fostered extensive inter-institutional partnerships across Europe. My postgraduate work at the National Centre for Franco-Irish Studies afforded me the chance to establish professional relationships and networks with leading academics in the humanities and social sciences.’
‘Throughout my time at the NCFIS, I was encouraged and mentored not just by my supervisors, Dr. Maher and Dr. Eugene O’Brien, but also by the close-knit cadre of academics, students and support staff at the NCFIS, as well as the members of its sister organisation, the Association of Franco-Irish Studies (AFIS).’


1. John McGahern (1934-2006): A Writer in Tune with his Time;

2. Beverage research;

3. Issues in Contemporary Irish Catholicism;

4. Representations of Catholicism in the Irish novel of the second half of the twentieth century – Kate O’Brien, Walter Macken, John Broderick, Edna O’Brien, Brian Moore and John McGahern;

5. Gastronomy in French and Irish Culture;

6. Applications of French Critical Theory to Irish culture and society;

7. The French Influence on the twentieth century Irish Novel;

8. Roman et christianisme en France au XXe siècle – François Mauriac, Georges Bernanos, Julien Green, Gilbert Cesbron, Luc Estang, Jean Sulivan ;

9. Writing the Great War in France: Louis-Ferdinand Céline, Blaise Cendrars, Jean Giono;

10. Secularism/laïcité and the religious habitus in France and Ireland ;


Students need to have at least a 2:1 level 8 honours degree in a relevant discipline. They will register initially for a research Masters and transfer to the PhD track if the research completed is viewed to be of the requisite standard by an outside expert.


Dr. Eamon Maher,
Director, National Centre for Franco-Irish Studies,

IT Tallaght,
Dublin 24
Tel: + 353 1 4042871
Mobile: 087-7663865

6th PhD from NCFIS

Patricia Medcalf graduated in Novemeber 2018. Her topic was: Four decades of Guinness Advertising in Ireland: Increments of Change

She is pictured here with her supervisor, Dr Eamon Maher.

Trish Medcalf PhD ceremony Nov 2018


First PhD from the NCFIS

Graduates from the NCFIS





Peter D.T. Guy was awarded a Doctorate in Philosophy in November 2009 for his thesis ‘As Mirrors are Lonely’: A Lacanian Reading of Three Irish Novelists.



2nd PhD from the NCFIS

In November 2010 Jean-Christophe Penet was awarded a PhD for his thesis entitled ‘Goodbye to the Power and the Glory? From Modernity to Ultramodernity – A Socio-NCFIS PHD graduationHistorical Analysis of Secularisation as the restructuration of Catholic Beliefs and Practices in France and Ireland’.

The thesis was co-supervised by Eugene O’Brien and Eamon Maher. The two external examiners were Professor Michael Cronin (DCU) and Professor Tom Inglis (UCD). Jean-Christophe is the second PhD to come out of the National Centre for Franco-Irish Studies.



Third PhD from the NCFIS

On the 13 September 2012, Jeanne Lakatos successfully defended her PhD thesis, entitled ‘Revolutionary Rhetoric in the Texts of Sydney Owenson (Lady Morgan): A Sociolinguistic Analysis and Application of the Semiotic Theory of Iconic Realism.’

A sample of the comments will reveal their satisfaction with the work: ‘The referencing is most competent; the bibliography is wide-ranging; and the intellectual scope of the thesis is comprehensive, looking at semiotics, continental philosophy, literary and linguistic theory and sociolinguistics’; ‘The fusion of theory and text is well-maintained and sustained throughout the thesis and the reader leaves the work with a strong overview of Owenson as a writer located in her culture and aware of the political and social constructions and constraints of that culture.’
Jeanne is Adjunct Professor in the School of Arts and Sciences, Connecticut University, USA.

Fourth PhD from the NCFIS

In September 2013, Brian Murphy, a lecturer in Tourism and Hospitality in IT Tallaght, and a dedicated proponent of the NCFIS, did an excellent Viva on his thesis which dealt with the theme of 'Changing Identities in a Homogenised World: The Role of “Place and Story” in Modern Perceptions of French Wine Culture.
The external examiners were Professor Grace Neville (UCC) and Dr Máirtin Mac Con Iomaire (DIT – Cathal Brugha Street).

Fifth PhD from the NCFIS

In September 2014, Sarah Balen, a Lecturer in English in IADT and a Board member of the NCFIS, successfully defended her thesis, A City Rooted Out of Time: A Rhizomatic Analysis of the City and Woman in the Poetry of Charles Baudelaire, Fernando Pessoa, T. S. Eliot and Peter Sirr. The external examiner was Professor Anne Fogarty (UCD), who was most complimentary about the quality of the thesis. Sarah has been contracted to write a monograph based around her research topic.

First International Franco-Irish Postgraduate Conference

The first National Centre of Franco Irish Studies International Postgraduate Conference entitled Encounters / La rencontre was held at ITT Dublin on 5-6 October 2007. To read the conference program click here Conference Programme 2007 .

NCFIS Postgraduate ConferenceDr. Eamon Maher, Professor Catherine Maignant
(Université de Lille3), Christophe Lerouge (French
Embassy) and Jean-Christophe Penet


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