Talk: Dr Michael Barron 'Manualising Social Change'

26 November 2021

Community activist Dr Michael Barron and Dr Lisa Godson discuss the idea of manualising social change.

While we live in a time of significant social change, the processes through which change is created and sustained remain intangible and inaccessible to most people. Whether it is change in school culture, in how health services are delivered or in national policy and legislation, this inaccessibility creates frustration and a sense of an ‘elite’ who gate keep. Drawing on the books he recommended, and on his own experience at the heart of many progressive changes in Ireland, Dr Michael Barron makes the case that manualising social change processes is urgent, increases transparency and trust, and is fundamental in supporting democracy in uncertain times.

Dr Michael Barron is a community activist who since the late 1990s has worked with minority and marginalised communities. He was centrally involved in the LGBTI+ rights movement in Ireland (including the marriage equality referendum campaigns) as founding director of BeLonG To, the campaign to remove the ‘Baptism Barrier’ from Irish schools, and carried out the official review of the Together For Yes referendum campaign. He has focused much of his work on building cross community coalitions for social justice and currently works as a funder of equality movements. He has written extensively on social movements and the role of civil society in affecting legislative and policy change.

This event took place as part of Dublin Art Book Fair 2021: Manual, sponsored by Henry J Lyons and supported by Dublin UNESCO City of Literature.