University of St Andrews: Scotland’s Future Series gets underway with podcast recordings

A new project launched by the Principal at the start of this semester to stimulate discussion and debate around Scotland’s future has taken its first major step by awarding funding to nine unique projects.

Thanks to £35,000 of financial assistance from the University to support relevant research and outreach work, the Scotland’s Future Series opened its first round with applications invited for funding of up to £3000.

A number of outstanding applications were received from academics, students and professional staff. The panel, comprising Professor Brad Mackay, Senior Vice-Principal and VP (International and External Relations); Professor Tom Brown, Vice-Principal (Research and Innovation); Ester Ruskuc, Director of Strategy and Policy; Niall Scott, Director of Communications; and Professor Stephen Gethins, Strategic Adviser on External Relations, awarded funding to a number of projects submitted in the first round, while several other applicants were encouraged to develop their proposals and resubmit to the next funding round.

Larger projects, which will receive funding of up to £3000, will look at a variety of issues ranging from climate change to decolonising the past to shape the future, and from local advocacy to responsible debate.

Smaller projects, awarded funding of up to £1000, include the creation of a Scotland’s Future Podcast series, the continuation of a project on rewriting gender in an age of transition, a paper on Scotland’s sub-state leadership on global climate action and the implications of this for Scotland’s constitutional debate, as well as a Chaplaincy Prize for 2023 on a Scotland’s Future theme.

Commenting, Professor Brad Mackay said: “The panel was delighted by the huge amount of enthusiasm for the Scotland’s Future Series and the standard of applications was extremely high. We were pleased to see a wide variety of contributions from staff and students, including interdisciplinary applications.”

He continued: “One of the proposals was a podcast series which involves hearing from successful applicants about their projects, why they were inspired to take part and what they hope to achieve. The podcasts will also feature news and events relevant to the ethos of the Scotland’s Future Series, with the first one focussing on the war in Ukraine. This will be a great way for people across the University and the wider St Andrews and Fife community to engage with the wide variety of debate and discussions being promoted by the University on Scotland’s future and place in the world, in a constructive and informative way.”

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