Business groups and academics urge stability at Stormont
Leading academics and business groups have called on political parties to deliver a functioning power-sharing administration following the election to ensure economic stability.
The CBI, Chamber of Commerce and Industry and the Federation of Small Businesses were among the groups that urged against a return to direct rule.
They said urgent action was needed to ensure Northern Ireland's "economic, social and political interests are accurately and clearly represented at the UK and European level, seeking to ensure the minimum level of disruption" following Brexit.
The groups also said EU withdrawal had clear implications for the peace process.
Among those backing the call are the Construction Employers Federation, Manufacturing NI, the Institute of Directors, the Northern Ireland Independent Retail Trade Association, the Northern Ireland Retail Consortium, the Quarry Products Association, the Northern Ireland Food & Drink Association, the Ulster Farmers' Union, the Northern Ireland Council for Voluntary Action and the Londonderry Chamber of Commerce.
Queen's University vice-chancellor Patrick Johnston and Patrick Nixon, the vice-chancellor of Ulster University, have also given their support.