Public engagement is intrinsic to all the RSE’s programmes and activities. As an independent organisation with a reputation for intellectual rigour and a Fellowship of diverse experience and expertise, the RSE is well placed to engage the public and provide an impartial platform for debate.

The RSE’s public engagement strategy builds on the experience and learning from prior years and aims to engage the people of Scotland with four guiding principles:

Inclusive, inter-generational and for the whole of Scotland

Multi-disciplinary and cross-disciplinary

High quality and high impact

Listening to communities.

The work of the RSE’s Public Engagement Committee utilises different approaches to engage with the public, including: expert talks; panel discussions; group discussions; family days; blogs; interactive exhibitions, and workshops. Our annual summer events programme, Curious, celebrates extraordinary people discussing contemporary issues and big ideas. These multi- and cross-disciplinary activities attract a cross-generational audience and take place in the RSE building, online and in locations throughout Scotland.

We have a young people’s programme which includes the delivery of RSE schools talks, free educational events for schools throughout Scotland. Providing young people in Scotland with a unique opportunity to engage with experts on a wide range of subjects.

Engaging with the public about their expectations of academia is hugely rewarding and a wonderful way of communicating the value of research and developing its societal impact.

Professor Jeremy Smith FRSE, RSE Young People’s Convener

To help us deliver our programme, we seek input from RSE Fellows and other experts. We also work with a range of partner organisations and collaborators to deliver activities and engage with individuals and communities. Looking ahead, we will be continuing to focus on embedding equality, diversity and inclusion throughout the programme, ensuring that our activities are as accessible to all.

Opportunities for Fellows

Short-term opportunities:

  • Contribute to our Scotland-wide series of Schools Talks which run throughout the school year
  • Submit an idea for an activity for Curious, the RSE’s summer programme or offer to chair one of the events.

Longer-term opportunities:

  • Membership of the Public Engagement Committee
  • Provide input and help shape upcoming activities
  • Submit an idea for an event or activity for the 2024/25 public engagement programme

To get involved, contact our team at [email protected].

Explore RSE public engagement work

Get under the surface with Scotland’s leading experts! The Royal Society of Edinburgh’s flagship series, Curious, is back from 04-17 September.
The RSE holds free educational events for schools throughout Scotland. These are primarily delivered through our RSE schools talks programme.
The Public Engagement Committee advises on the development and delivery of all RSE public engagement activity.
As Scotland’s National Academy, the RSE is proud to number amongst its Fellowship some of the most talented leaders, thinkers