Niall Johnston

Niall Johnston


Currently, the Project Director for the UK Government-funded Freedom of Religion or Belief (FoRB) Leadership Network, Niall is also the Parliamentary Advisor to the Somalia Stability Fund and an Advisor on FoRB to the Archbishops’ Council of the Church of England. Niall has over 25 years’ experience delivering technical assistance and development support to parliaments in developed, developing, fragile and conflict-affected environments across more than 60 countries and 170 legislatures.

A former army officer and an Anglican priest since 1993, he is particularly interested in issues around support to legislatures in the context of transitional democracies, especially in the Muslim world and in the leadership aspects of Article 18 of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights.


Cultural Diplomacy and the Art of Soft Power

What is the role of cultural diplomacy in our ever-increasing polarised and divided world? How can we foster a better understanding between cultures and nations? How can cultural diplomacy pave the way to the wider cooperation and dialogue? During this seminar we will examine the role of cultural diplomacy, learn how we can foster an effective cultural dialogue, and examine the role of art and artists in shaping the island of Ireland’s image (North and South) in the international context.