50 years of Ireland in the EU

Ireland’s 50 years of EU membership has coincided with a radical economic and social transformation of our country.

Welcome to EU50

EU50 is series of events and initiatives to mark and celebrate 50 years of Ireland's membership of the European Union.
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Communicating Europe Initiative

Find a list of organisations and projects funded by the Communicating Europe Initiative

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Europe Day 2023

Marking the culmination of the Government’s EU50 programme, with activities in schools around Ireland and a performance of 'Ode to Joy' in the National Concert Hall.

RIA with Tánaiste

Into Europe: Ireland and the EU 1973 – 2023

INTO EUROPE is a Royal Irish Academy exhibition commissioned by EU50, DFA.

The Government’s EU50 programme is marking Ireland’s 50 years of EU membership since our decision to join the EEC in 1972. Government Departments, State Agencies, second and third level institutions, civil society groups, industry, cultural institutions and our Mission network have all been encouraged to get involved.

small part of the cover of the Irish Times supplement
Part of the cover of Ireland in the EU Irish Times supplement

Ireland in the EU Irish Times supplement

On 27 January 2023, the Irish Times group, in association with the Department of Foreign Affairs, published a special report in the Irish Times and Irish Examiner on Ireland in the EU: The impact of 50 years

Ireland in the EU | The impact of 50 years
pdf 8.6 MB

What is EU50?

Find out more below.
A view of the Poolbeg Chimneys.

History of Ireland in the EU

Read more about Ireland's 50 Years in the EU

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A view of the Four Courts at dusk.

EU50 Programme

Read more about our EU50 programme

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EU50 news and events

Find out more about some of the events that have formed part of the EU50 Programme.
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EU50 Iveagh House Lecture

Emily O’Reilly, European Ombudsman will deliver a Department of Foreign Affairs EU50 Iveagh House Lecture on Wednesday, 3 May 2023 at 12.30 pm.

Taoiseach Leo Varadkar, European Parliament President Metsola, EMI President Noelle O'Connell and TCD Students launch MyEU50 Competition in the long room in Trinity, standing together holding a MYEU50 sign

Ireland is Europe and Europe is Ireland

President of European Parliament, H.E. Roberta Metsola, visited Ireland to celebrate EU50 and addressed a special sitting of both Houses of the Oireachtas.

six men and women standing posing for a photo in black tie attire on the landing of a dual way staircase

Irish Times EU50 Debate

The motion for the debate was: "This House Believes that it is time for the citizens of the European Union to directly and democratically elect the President of the European Commission".

seven men and women standing posing for a photo in suits and office wear

Embassy Helsinki host EU50 Seminar

The Embassy of Ireland in Helsinki together with the Embassy of Denmark in Helsinki jointly organised an EU50 seminar in Finland.

five women sitting down on a stage for a panel discussion, one woman is talking

Gender equality in Europe: Are we there yet?

The Consulate General of Ireland, Frankfurt, hosted its first St. Brigid’s Day event on 1 February.

President O'Learly and Minister for European Affairs Peter Burke TD wearing black clothes standing in front of Irish and European flags

St Brigid's Day EU50 Lecture recording

President of the European Court of Human Rights, Justice Síofra O’Leary marks St Brigid’s Day with EU50 Iveagh House Lecture

crowd sitting at exhibition launch

Embassy Lisbon hosts Minister James Browne TD

Embassy Lisbon hosts Minister James Browne TD in collaboration with the Danish Embassy.

five women sitting down on a stage for a panel discussion, one woman is talking

Gender equality in Europe: Are we there yet?

The Consulate General of Ireland, Frankfurt, hosted its first St. Brigid’s Day event on 1 February 2023.

one person standing at podium with three seated, with one seated speaking into a microphone

Embassy Vilnius joint seminar with Embassy of Denmark

Embassy of Ireland in Vilnius held a joint public seminar with the Embassy of Denmark to commemorate 50 years of EU membership.

graphic denoting map lines

Launch of An Post EU50 Stamp

An Post’s first stamp of 2023 marking the 50th anniversary of Ireland joining the European Communities (EC), now the European Union (EU), was unveiled on 6 January.

Micheal Martin and Ursula von der Leyen waving from the doorway of a building.

“Ireland Lies at the Heart of Europe”

President of European Commission, H.E. Ursula von der Leyen, addresses both Houses of the Oireachtas, celebrating EU50 and Ireland's place in Europe.

Ger Gibbons, ICTU, Danny McCoy, IBEC; Dr Frances Ruane, NPCP and moderator Dearbhail McDonald

Ireland and the single market conference

A cross-section of stakeholders from Irish and European economic, academic and political life met to offer perspectives on the past, present and future of Ireland’s development as a member of the Single Market.

Minister of State Thomas Byrne and Adam Tooze speaking on stage.

Minister Byrne marks Ireland’s 50 years of EU membership at Columbia University

Minister of State Byrne addressed an audience of students and faculty at Columbia University’s School of International and Public Affairs

Two members of the panel standing on stage in front of banners for the Swedish and Irish Embassies.

Ireland & Denmark marking 50 years of EU membership – a mid-life crisis?

Embassy of Ireland Stockholm partnered with the European Commission and the Danish Embassy in Stockholm.

Members of Enterprise Ireland sitting as a panel on stage.

Seminar - The Future of the European Financial Sector

The Consulate in Frankfurt, in partnership with Enterprise Ireland, underlined Ireland’s role as a key player in setting the EU financial services agenda

Irish-Danish journalist Clare MacCarthy, and panelists Noelle O Connell (CEO of European Movement Ireland), and Claus Grube (former Permanent Secretary of the Danish MFA, and former Permanent Representative to the EU).

Ireland & Denmark marking 50 years of EU membership – a Golden Jubilee?

Embassy Copenhagen co-hosted the event with the European Parliament Liaison Office in Denmark, at Europa House in Copenhagen.

Professor O’Brennan standing with staff from the Embassy of Ireland Bucharest.

Professor John O’Brennan on Ireland's relationship with the EU

Embassy of Ireland Bucharest hosted the event in partnership with Bucharest University

Professor Diarmaid Ferriter speaking at a podium.

Into Europe – Reflections on 50 years of EU membership

The UCD school of history hosted an EU50 conference, which sought to reflect on Ireland’s 50 years of membership.

EU Commissioner Mairead McGuinness speaking into a microphone.

Commissioner McGuinness celebrates Ireland’s 50 years of EU Membership

Mairead McGuinness addressed an event hosted by Ireland's Consulate in New York.

Michel Barnier and Simon Coveney shaking hands

EU50 inaugural Iveagh House lecture with Michel Barnier

Mr Barnier delivered his Iveagh House lecture on “A European perspective on Ireland’s membership of the European Union”.

Prof Imelda Maher and Jamie Smith sitting in armchairs on stage in front of an EU50 backdrop.

Prof. Imelda Maher and Journalist Jamie Smyth in conversation in NYC

Discussions covered Ireland’s winding path to EU membership, and how the EU can garner hope as it looks to the future

Ireland and Denmark EU50 celebration panel discussion

Ireland and Denmark EU50 celebration panel discussions

Discussions focused on the role of small countries in the EU, particularly how Ireland and Denmark have maximised their influence over the last 50 years.

Irish Universities Association Universities 50 Event Group Photo

Irish Universities Association Universities50 event

The reception highlighted the continued two-way opportunities for both Irish and European students and universities across all disciplines.

EU Special Representative for Human Rights Eamon Gilmore in Embassy Madrid

Human Rights discussion with Eamon Gilmore at Embassy Madrid

Mr Gilmore spoke about the Irish and Colombian Peace Processes, and the global Human Rights situation.

Photo of Minister Byrne at Iveagh House for a commemoration of the 1972 Staines Air Disaster

Commemoration of the 1972 Staines Air Disaster

Minister of State Thomas Byrne T.D. hosted the families of victims of the Staines Air Crash to commemorate the 50th Anniversary of the tragedy.

Taoiseach Micheál Martin unveiling the John Hume bust

Presentation of John Hume Bust and Address by Taoiseach Micheál Martin to the European Parliament

This bust is a reminder of John’s unwavering commitment to peace on the island of Ireland.

Minister Byrne at the University of Limerick Symposium

University of Limerick Symposium, 10-11 May 2022

The Department of Foreign Affairs, under the EU50 programme, supported a two day symposium on "The European Dimension in Irish Education".

Taoiseach Micheál Martin and Minister Byrne meet with young people for Europe Day celebrations

EU50 Europe Day Celebrations

Over the course of Europe Day, 9 May, Government Ministers met with young people in schools across Ireland, to hear what Europe means to them.

Micheál Martin showcasing the Treaty of Accession to the European Union.

Celebrating 50 Years in the EU

Taoiseach Micheál Martin addresses #IrelandEU50 Accession of Ireland to the ECC event

Éire AE50 logo

Gaeilge san AE

Is cuid ríthábhachtach dár bhféiniúlacht agus dár n-oidhreacht í an Ghaeilge. Ar an 1 Eanair 2022, bhain an Ghaeilge stádas iomlán amach mar theanga oifigiúil de chuid an Aontais Eorpaigh. Mar gheall air seo, tá an Ghaeilge anois ar chomhchéim leis na teangacha oifigiúla eile san AE. 50 bliain tar éis dul isteach san AE, tá ár dteanga náisiúnta anois ag croílár an Aontais.

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