Background to the Research
- This chapter reviews information gathered on the implementation of TSN
in research carried out in the winter of 1995 and the spring of 1996.
The purpose of the research was to determine the adequacy of the implementation,
operation and impact of TSN since its introduction in 1991 and to compare
this across government departments. All the Northern Ireland departments
were included in the research, as were the NIO and the cross-departmental
- The research used a structured questionnaire with a number of open-ended
questions on training, planning and definitions of need, departmental
deadlines and monitoring.
- Questionnaires were received by all Northern Ireland departments, the
NIO and CCRU with a six weeks set deadline for response. No department
met the deadline however all departments responded eventually, aside
from the NIO and DENI.
its introduction TSN has attracted considerable political attention
among both party and non-party political organisations and this is increasing.
The research reported here however suggests there may be a growing gulf
between the public expectations and civil service views of the potential
of TSN and its practical application by government.
gap results from a failure of government to set the parameters of the
TSN debate within its own administration. This failure is exacerbated
by the fact that, whether government wish it or not, TSN is central
to wider political considerations of a governing a divided society,
and as such transparency is a critical issue.