The International Centre for Local and Regional Development (ICLRD) is a North-South-US partnership programme created to explore and expand the contribution that planning and the development of physical, social and economic infrastructures can make to improving the lives of people in both Irish jurisdictions – particularly those in divided and disadvantaged areas – and thus to peace-building and reconciliation on the island.
The ICLRD provides independent research, planning analysis and a range of international experience to assist policy makers, practitioners, local officials and community groups in promoting good local and regional planning as part of the process of conflict resolution and in achieving greater social and economic cohesion.
- Provides independent, joined-up research, thinking and policy advice on cross-border and all-island spatial planning issues (economic development, transport, housing, environment, service provision, etc);
- Offers capacity building programmes for communities, local, regional and national government actors;
- Acts as a catalyst and conduit to bring relevant actors, North and South, together to work on common goals; and
- Promotes international co-operation and exchanges.
The ICLRD promotes integrated regional development and fosters cross-border and inter-regional co-operation. An immediate focus is on identifying linkages between Shaping Our Future 2025, the regional development strategy in Northern Ireland, and the Republic of Ireland’s National Spatial Strategy for Ireland 2002-2020. The Centre concentrates on applied research, the development of case studies, workshops for experts and professional education programmes for civic leaders and practitioners. Each of these activities generates its own formal and informal networks, and promotes the exchange of ideas and experiences. The Centre encourages the dissemination of research findings and conference conclusions by means of progress reports, newsletters and a dedicated website.