Photo Credit: Bobbie Hanvey
Olwen is a leading Policy Analyst and Consultant, with an established track record in developing and implementing equality, diversity and inclusion projects, and since 2017, a number of policies and strategies in the arts and culture sector. Notably, this has included the Arts Council / An Chomhairle Ealaíon Equality, Human Rights and Diversity Policy and the National Library of Ireland’s Diversity and Inclusion Policy.
Olwen is an Associate Consultant of the Institute of Public Administration, and guest lectures on their Professional Diploma in Human Rights and Equality. Olwen also advises on, and facilitates in the development of organisational and advocacy / policy strategies.
A graduate of the Whitaker School of Government and Management (IPA), and NCI (formerly the National College of Industrial Relations), Olwen holds a BA (Hons) in Industrial Relations, a Postgraduate Diploma in Economic Science, Public Policy Analysis, an MEconScience in Public Policy Analysis and a Professional Certificate in Governance. Olwen was awarded joint-first in class for her thesis which examined social justice advocacy in public policy through the prism of the #MarRef and #WakingTheFeminists movements; she regularly gives public talks and lectures on both her work and research.
In late 2017, and in response to the revelations of harassment in Irish theatre, the #MeToo and #IrishWeinstein hashtags, Olwen co-authored the Amplify Women toolkit with Dr. Brenda Donohue and colleagues from across the legal, workplace relations and representative / advocacy communities. Olwen was the Project Advisor for the Speak Up: A Call for Change report, published in October 2021.
A passionate advocate for both gender equality and the role of arts in society, Olwen is a former Board member of the National Women’s Council of Ireland (NWCI) and the inaugural Chair of Network Ireland’s Advisory Council (she was the organisation’s National President in 2015). Olwen has served on the Boards of the Lyric Theatre (Belfast), Poetry Ireland and CoisCéim Dance Theatre, and was Chair of the Policy Research Committee of the National Campaign for the Arts (NCFA). Olwen currently serves on the Board of Women's Aid and the Centre for Crossborder Studies.