In 2010 the National College of Art and Design (NCAD) and University College Dublin (UCD) agreed to form a strategic alliance. Although the immediate impetus was the dissolution of the National University of Ireland, and thus of the body that awarded NCAD’s degrees, from the beginning those involved hoped that the alliance would create new synergies. While the character and purpose of an arts college and of a research university might appear quite different, there have long been significant overlaps. Moreover, many aspects of the missions of these two types of institutions are presently converging. This alliance has the potential to open a new chapter in the history of NCAD and UCD, and also in their relationship with the city of Dublin, that will enhance their national and international reputation and that of Dublin as a centre of imaginative thinking about the role of the visual arts in contemporary society and about the role of creativity in scientific, social scientific, and humanistic inquiry.
To date, collaborations between the academic staff of the two institutions has clustered around six themes. Chosen both to enhance existing collaboration and to prompt new, typically interdisciplinary, contact between faculty at UCD and NCAD, these were: Culture and its Institutions; the Expanded Academy; Health and Well-Being; Studio/Lab; Text and Image; and Urban Cultures/Urban Futures.
Culture and its Institutions
- ‘Object Matters’: Joint monthly seminar series, 2011/12
- ‘The Fourth Wall: on film & architecture’: Joint symposium, May 2011
- Summer School on Cultural History, GradCAM @ NCAD and UCD’s HII, September 2011.
The Expanded Academy
- ‘Others and Exiles’: Joint postgraduate module, 2011/12
Health and Well-Being
- MSc Medical Devices Design
- ‘Tunnelling Art & Physics’: Joint undergraduate project, Fine Art & Physics, 2010/11 & 2011/12
- ‘Spaces for Learning’: Joint postgraduate module, Education (UCD & NCAD), Design (UCD Architecture & NCAD), SMARTLab (UCD), 2011/12
- Group Design, a collaborative undergraduate module being developed for 2012/13
Text and Image
- Shared postgraduate seminar, Fine Art & Creative Writing
Urban Cultures/Urban Futures
- ‘Resetting the Square’: Joint undergraduate project, Fine Art & Landscape Architecture, 2010/11
- ‘Design, Culture and Dublin’: Joint graduate module (ARCT 40), 2011/12
- ‘Material and Culture’: Joint graduate module, Architecture & Visual Culture (NCAD) 2011/12