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Aileen O'Carroll

Aileen O'Carroll

Policy Manager

Digital Repository of Ireland

BA (hons), Dip Social Research, Ms Soc Sc, PhD
DRI Role

Policy Manager

Research Interests
Digital data archiving, use and re-use, research methods and research design, life history research, labour process, sociology of time, comparative political economy
+353 (0) 1 708 3304



Dr Aileen O’Carroll is the policy manager at the Digital Repository of Ireland (DRI). She is based in the National Institute for Regional and Spatial Analysis (NIRSA), NUI Maynooth where she manages the Irish Qualitative Data Archive (IQDA). This role has involved the development and implementation of standards for deposit and access to qualitative data (text based, audio and visual) in line with emerging international and EU standards. She additionally advises researchers on best practice in managing and archiving research projects, both to ensure that ethical commitments are met and that the data gathered is of the highest standard to facilitate optimal re-use by a variety of audiences.

Aileen was involved in the formation of EQUALAN, a European network committed to promoting and implementing a strategy for preserving and organising qualitative and qualitative longitudinal data resources.

Aileen is also attached to the Life History and Social Change project, based at the National University of Ireland, Maynooth. This project gathered a database of life history interviews, calendars and network charts, drawn from a nationally representative sample of respondents to a survey of employment, family and living conditions. The aim is not simply to recover the voice of those who lived through social change but also to provide a richer understanding of the rationalities and vocabularies of social actors’ motives and how these are shaped by specific socio-historical and socio-spatial contexts. Aileen’s research is concerned with working time, particularly the organisation of working time in knowledge workplaces.

Selected Publications

O’Carroll, A. & Gray, J. (2012) ‘Education and class formation in 20th century Ireland: A retrospective qualitative longitudinal analysis’, Sociology.

O’Carroll, A., Gray, J., Komolafe, J., O’Byrne, H. & Murphy, T. (2011). Best practice in archiving qualitative data, NIRSA Working Paper, No. 65.

O’Carroll, A. & Gray, J. (2010/11) Qualitative research in Ireland: Archiving strategies and development, ’IQ, IASSIST Quarterly, 34(3 & 4) of 2010 and 35 (1 & 2) of 2011.

O’Carroll, A. (2008). Fuzzy holes and intangible time: Time in a knowledge industry. Time & Society, 17(2–3), 179–193.

O’Carroll, A. (2008). ‘Busy Ireland’ in Corcoran, M.P. and Share, P. (Eds.), Belongings: shaping identity in modern Ireland (pp. 245–258). Dublin: IPA.

O’Carroll, A. (2006). ‘Every ship is a different factory’. Work organisation, technology, community and change: The story of the Dublin docker. Saothar: The Irish Journal of Labour History (31), 45–52.

O’Carroll, A. (2005). ‘The long and the short: Working hours in the IT sector in Ireland’. In Gerry Boucher and Grainne Collins (Eds.), The new world of work (pp 163–180). Dublin: Liffey Press.