Washington Summit on the 25th Anniversary of the Good Friday/Belfast Agreement

Assessing the Progress, Contextualizing the Present, and Envisioning the Future

This one-day event in DC marked the twenty-fifth anniversary of the Good Friday/Belfast Agreement (GFA/BA), appraised the progress towards peace and reconciliation in Northern Ireland, and considered the path forward.

This event was co-sponsored by Georgetown University’s Berkley Center for Religion, Peace, and World Affairs, BMW Center for German and European Studies, and Global Irish Studies Initiative; American University’s School of Public Affairs (funded with a grant from SPA’s Helfat Family Faculty Development Fund), School of International Service, and Transatlantic Policy Center; the Department of Foreign Affairs of Ireland; the Northern Ireland Bureau; the U.K. Government; Ulster University; and the Washington Ireland Program.


9:00 - 9:15 a.m. | Kickoff 
Jayne Brady, Head of the Northern Ireland Civil Service

9:15 - 9:30 a.m. | Welcome
Senator George Mitchell (L'61), D-ME (retired)

9:30 - 10:45 a.m. | Panel 1: Reflecting on the Peace Journey
Discussion by academics and practitioners on the successes and challenges, aspirations and realities of the GFA/BA, progress since, and what remains to be done.

Dr. Duncan Morrow, Professor in Politics and Director of Community Engagement, Ulster University
Dr. Jonny Byrne, Senior Lecturer in Criminology, Ulster University
Dr. Carolyn Gallaher, Professor and Senior Associate Dean, School of International Studies, American University
Dr. Kimberly Cowell-Meyers, Associate Professor of Government, American University

11:00 - 11:30 a.m. | Keynote 1: U.S. involvement in GFA/BA
Ambassador Nancy Soderberg (SFS’84), Former Ambassador of United States to the United Nations and Former Deputy Assistant to the President for National Security Affairs

11:30 a.m. - 1:00 p.m. | Panel 2: Reflecting on the International Architecture that Facilitates Progress
Discussion on the diplomatic frameworks that made the GFA/BA possible and the current opportunities and challenges around international collaboration in support of the broader peace process.

H.E. Dame Karen Pierce, Ambassador of the United Kingdom to the United States
H.E. Geraldine Byrne Nason, Ambassador of Ireland to the United States
H.E. Stavros Lambrinidis, Ambassador of the European Union to the United States
Dr. Karen Donfried, U.S. Assistant Secretary of State for European and Eurasian Affairs
Dr. Andrew McCormick (moderator), former Director General, Internal Relations, Executive Office Northern Ireland

1:00 - 1:45 p.m. | Break

2:00 - 3:15 p.m. | Analyzing the Role of the United States
Discussion by current and former U.S. policymakers on the role of the United States in facilitating the ongoing peace process.

Congressman Bruce Morrison, Co-Chair of the Ad Hoc Committee to Protect the Good Friday Agreement
Ambassador Mitchell Reiss, Former Special Envoy to Northern Ireland
Senator Chris Murphy, D-CT
Sean Whelan (moderator), Washington Correspondent, RTÉ

3:30 - 4:45 p.m. | Panel 4: A New Beginning: What Next for Northern Ireland?
Discussion by newly elected representatives and youth voices from civil society on their vision for the future and how they frame the issues of the ongoing peace process.

Mr. David Brooks, Democratic Unionist Party Member of the Legislative Assembly (Washington Ireland Program alumnus)
Dr. Caoimhe Archibald, Sinn Féin Member of the Legislative Assembly
Ms. Lillian Seenoi-Barr, Director of Programmes, North West Migrants Forum
Mr. Chris Brown, Partner, Brown-O’Connor Belfast (Washington Ireland Program alumnus)
Ms. Jane McCormick (moderator), BBC Correspondent, Belfast

5:00 - 5:30 p.m. | Keynote 2: TBA 

5:45 - 7:00 p.m. | Reception

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