There have been widespread tributes paid to the university professor and expert on policing, Dr Vicky Conway, whose death was announced by Dublin City University's School of Law and Government.
Dr Conway was a lecturer at DCU who had served two terms as a member of the Policing Authority, as well as being a member of the Commission on the Future of Policing.
DCU President Daire Keogh described her as a "wonderful colleague" who epitomised the mission of the university to transform lives and society.
Minister for Justice Helen McEntee said she was shocked and saddened by the passing of an academic who had made a substantial contribution to developing the oversight of policing in Ireland and displayed a deep commitment to the human rights of the most vulnerable.
We are terribly sad to have to share the passing of our colleague Vicky Conway. She was a wonderful person, wise and kind, and we will miss her. pic.twitter.com/bnxczPcJ5C— Law and Gov DCU (@LawGovDCU) July 20, 2022
Garda Commissioner Drew Harris described Dr Conway as a strong and dedicated advocate for minority communities and vulnerable members of society.
Chairperson of the Policing Authority Bob Collins said her contribution to policing was rooted not only in academic curiosity, but in a genuine desire to ensure that everyone's engagement with the gardaí was based on a respect for their humanity and a vindication of their human rights.
The Irish Council for Civil Liberties described her as a fearless voice for accountability and policing oversight, and a brilliant and ground-breaking academic who made an enormous contribution to Irish Law.
Community and voluntary groups and public representatives from all parties have also expressed their shock and sadness at the death of Dr Conway and offered their condolences to her family.
Dr Conway joined the School of Law and Governance in DCU in July 2015, having previously held positions at the University of Kent, Queen's University Belfast, the University of Limerick and the University of Leeds.
A graduate of University College Cork and the University of Edinburgh, she was awarded her PHD at Queen's University in Belfast in 2008.
She was made Associate Professor of Law in Dublin City University in 2017 and was its first Convenor of Equality, Diversity and Inclusion.
She was also a leading researcher on policing in Ireland with an emphasis on the intersection between social change, police culture and police accountability and her expertise was recognised in a number of government appointments.
Dr Conway was, along with two other colleagues, part of an EU programme which developed training for criminal defence solicitors to enable them to best defend their client's rights in the garda station which is now accredited by the Law Society of Ireland.
In 2020, she started a podcast called Policed in Ireland to hear the lived experience of being policed in Ireland.