Jackie Bourke

Jackie Bourke is a research consultant specialising in urban issues and children’s rights. She also works as a writer and editor.

Jackie Bourke is a research
specialising in
 urban issues
and children’s
She also works as a
 writer and editor.

About Jackie

Dr. Jackie Bourke is a researcher and writer who is interested in cities and children’s rights. These two subjects formed the basis of her doctoral study which examined how children experience urban public space.

Dublin city

Having lived in Dublin City for most of her life she is intrigued by the diversity of encounters city residents describe – both the good and the bad!

Urban Planning

Using collaborative approaches to research and urban planning, she explores how adults and children experience everyday life in the city.

Children's Rights

She is a children’s rights advocate who promotes the importance of giving children and young people a say in all matters which affect them.


She has written for a wide range of publications for many years. She also edits educational resources, reports and periodicals.

Urban Research

One of Jackie’s key interests is ‘place-making’ and how people create a sense of place in public space.

Using qualitative methods, her research explores the dynamic interplay between people and the city.

She has worked with women who have mapped their daily experience of walking through the city and she lectures in feminist urban planning and the gendered implications of urban design.

Jackie has also worked with groups of children and young people, who photographed the everyday experience of their urban environments and shared their views on their outdoor freedoms.

She is a member of the Space&Place Research Collaborative, Maynooth University.

Writing & Editing

Jackie writes about urban life for both academic and non-academic publications.

She is co-editor of the Irish Journal of Social, Economic and Environmental Sustainability.

She writes reports, proposals, submissions and educational resources for both public bodies and NGOs.

She is also on the editorial board of the Children’s Research Network of Ireland and Northern Ireland Research Digest.


In 2006 Jackie founded Playtime, an initiative which aims to raise awareness of the right to play and freedom in the city.

She is a member of the Children’s Rights Alliance and through her work she advocates for children and young people to have a say in everything that affects their daily lives.

She has conducted collaborative research projects with children and young people and designed participative processes for commissions such as the Play Space in Killybegs Co. Donegal. She successfully campaigned to have children included in Irish planning legislation.