The humanities are human-centred disciplines that are engaged in the study of how people process and document the shared human experience’ through culture, history and language. They offer a long-term historical perspective fostering the growth of self-aware, outward-looking, and creative societies. The growth of STEAM approaches in education — Science, Technology, Engineering, Arts and Humanities, and Mathematics — is testament to the vital role played by the arts and humanities in developing critical thinking, creativity and communication. STEAM is based on an understanding that innovation is often found where different subjects intersect and that student achievement in science and mathematics increases when arts and humanities perspectives are integrated.
Across the island of Ireland the humanities have been central to creating and maintaining Ireland’s significant cultural reputation at home and abroad.The humanities make a significant contribution to the reflective exploration of literary, visual and performance arts which are such a strong part of Irish culture. The humanities help us to understand the shared histories and complex relationships on the island of Ireland and with Britain, while fostering awareness of intercultural differences. The arts and humanities also make a huge contribution to the creative sector – through museums, galleries, libraries, music, performing arts, publishing, tourism and the visual arts, etc. It is imperative that the links between these disciplines and the creative industries are strengthened so that they can reach their full potential