Vocational Panel

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The Vocational Panels are one of three methods by which members are elected to Seanad Éireann, the upper house of the Oireachtas (parliament) of Ireland.

The composition of Seanad Éireann is defined in outline by Article 18 of the Constitution of Ireland, which provides for 11 appointees of the Taoiseach, 6 senators elected by the universities, and 5 vocational panels, which together elect 43 members of Seanad Éireann, the upper house of the Oireachtas (parliament) of the Republic of Ireland.

The composition of each panel and procedures for the election are laid down by the (the "1947 Act").


Section 52 of the 1947 Act defines the numbers of senators to be elected from each of the panels. The Act also provides for the division of each panel into two sub-panels: the nominating bodies sub-panel and the Oireachtas sub-panel; and for the election of Members from the panels and sub-panels as follows:

Nomination procedures

Candidates must be Irish citizens over the age of 21. Candidates can be nominated by two methods: by Oireachtas members or by nominating bodies. Nominating bodies are organisations that are connected to the particular vocation, for example the Irish Congress of Trade Unions can nominate in the Labour panel, and the Royal Irish Academy can nominate in the Cultural and Education panel.

As the electorate is restricted to elected Councillors, Teachta Dálas and Senators, the political parties have a great influence in the nomination procedures....
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