Academy Gold Medallists 2006
L-R: Gold Medal Winners Professor Peter Neary (Social Sciences) and Professor James Dooge (Engineering Sciences)
Professor James Dooge, Academy Gold Medal in the Engineering Sciences
James Dooge, emeritus Professor of Civil Engineering in University College, Dublin. Having spent his early years in public works, James Dooge became Professor of Civil Engineering in University College Cork, before, in 1970, taking up his chair in University College Dublin. This is but the framework, however, for a life that has been marked by extraordinarily distinguished public service and by scholarship of the highest quality and originality. He served as a member of the Senate in various capacities; he was a senatorial member of Dr Garrett Fitzgerald’s government in the role of Minister for Foreign Affairs; he chaired the Committee on Institutions, an ad hoc committee of representatives of EEC heads of government charged with examining the possibility of institutional reform of the European communities. In the academic world he was President of the Royal Irish Academy, 1987-90. He was elected a foreign member of the Royal Academy of Engineering, which prestigious body awarded him its 2005 Prince Philip Medal. He is the recipient of some eight honorary degrees and numerous other academic honours and civic awards.
James Dooge has been described as global before the world was global. His work, says one of his assessors, changed the nature of his subject. It has had substantial influence on the design of water systems such as reservoirs and all aspects of hydraulic and dam engineering, and has been key to understanding the effects of climate change and how to optimise water resources. James Dooge is widely regarded as one of the founding fathers of modern hydrology. A lone scholar who often did his most important work as a solo worker rather than as team leader, he has, nevertheless, been an inspirational figure for younger engineers. He has been an active researcher for fifty years, a great engineer who has brought huge credit to Ireland.
Professor James Peter Neary, Academy Gold Medal in the Social Sciences
James Peter Neary, Professor of Political Economy in University College, Dublin. Before being appointed in 1980 to the chair in University College Dublin (only nine years after receiving his BA degree there), Peter Neary held positions in the Economic and Social Research Institute, in Trinity College Dublin and in Nuffield College Oxford, where he had been awarded his DPhil in 1978. He has held numerous distinguished visiting positions in Oxford, Paris, Stockholm, Oslo, Vienna, Kiel, Kingston (Ontario), Berkeley, Princeton, MIT and elsewhere. He has been president of the European Economic Association and is a Fellow of the Econometric Society. Thanks to the clarity and precision of his pedagogical style, he is in constant demand as a plenary lecturer. His career is marked by tireless energy and commitment in the national and international development of his discipline.
Peter Neary’s best known contributions to economic theory are in the field of International Trade, for which he has provided a unifying framework allowing a better understanding of contrasting approaches, and in Keynesian macroeconomics, whose theoretical underpinnings were greatly strengthened by his work. In a fast-changing discipline, many of his influential and widely cited papers have shown a remarkable endurance. His path-breaking paper (with Max Corden), ‘Booming sector and de-industrialisation in a small open economy’, continues to spawn a huge theoretical and empirical literature over thirty years after its publication. This classic paper showed how a favourable shock to one sector, such as a discovery of petroleum, could choke off activity in the rest of the economy.
He has also been an advocate of careful and consistent approaches to measurement of economic concepts. His recent book (with James E.Anderson), Measuring the Restrictiveness of International Trade Policy, rigorously develops an analytic tool for making direct comparisons between tariffs, quotas and other forms of trade restraint, and is proving its worth in practical application by the leading international organizations.
Peter Neary is undoubtedly Ireland’s most distinguished academic economist and a leading figure worldwide.