Keith O Neill profile picture
O Neill
Doctoral Researcher, Sociology


I hold a joint bachelors degree (BA) in Sociology and French from Trinity College Dublin, and a master of science (MSc) degree in Sociology from the University of Amsterdam. Over the previous decade I have worked inside of the third-sector in the Republic of Ireland, and most recently in Canada, working with marginalized and "at-risk" individuals and groups. Previously, I worked in the third-sector as a research and development coordinator (immigrant advocacy), and more recently in Canada, through front-line practice, working directly with young people experiencing homelessness, and its many complex intersections such as addiction and trauma. 

In the Spring-Autumn of 2023 I will be a visiting researcher in Canada at the University of British Columbia, in Vancouver, and at Ryserson University, in Toronto. 


[2022] January - March: Social Inequality - SOST0013  [Seminars] 

[2023] January - March: Social Inequality - SOST0013  [Seminars]


My research is interested in the relationship between the third sector and the state. In particular I am interested in understanding how non-profit social service organisations continue to evolve at the same time that the state increasingly withdraws.  

A central concern of my research is understanding changes in organisational practices on vulnerable people and groups represented by third sector / civil society organisations. In this light, I seek to understand how social inequalities are affected across different welfare-states in recline, and the subsequent expansion of third sector social economies.

As civil society is becoming increasingy responsible for providing protection in areas that the state previously tended to, should this shift be read as some new form of radical democratic participation ("from below"), or just more sophiticated modalities of an already familiar liberal intervention ("from above"). 

Research Interests: political sociology; third-sector; civil society; New Public Management; neoliberalism; comparative case study methods


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