Royal Society of Edinburgh investigates Scotland’s creative industries in new event series 

Each year, the Royal Society of Edinburgh chooses a key topic to investigate, inviting sector experts to engage in a series of events that take on some of the key questions and debates in the subject area. This Spring, the RSE investigates Scotland’s creative industries, shedding light on their role as a catalyst for change, an avenue for resistance and identity creation, and how they can help address contemporary challenges in Scotland.

This year’s series explores topics from the evolving role of Scotland’s libraries and celebrating literary traditions to understanding the intersection of design, landscape, and identity, and exploring women’s impact on countercultural creativity. The RSE will also visit several iconic cultural venues, including the V&A Dundee, The National Library of Scotland, and Glasgow Women’s Library for our events, which are completely free and open to all.

Amongst the speakers, the RSE are thrilled to welcome critically acclaimed author and Fellow Louise Welsh, who will be interviewed by Jenny Niven, Director of the Edinburgh International Book Festival, on Monday, 20 May, at 18:00. They will be exploring the creativity that defines their distinguished careers, promising an engaging and insightful discussion. Aminah Shah FRSE (National Librarian and Chief Executive of the National Library of Scotland), Sean McNamara (Head of The Chartered Institute of Library and Information Professionals), and Éadaoín Lynch (Scottish Book Trust) will form a panel discussing the unique challenges and opportunities for Scotland’s libraries.

As Scotland’s National Academy, we celebrate interdisciplinary expertise across sectors, including the creative industries – from art and literature to music and design.

The programme is a series of five events, beginning with a discussion of women’s countercultural creativity on Thursday 11 April, and culminating with Louise Welsh in conversation with Jenny Niven on Thursday 20 May.


WOMen’s CounterCultural Creativity

Thursday 11 April |18:00 – 19:00 | Glasgow Women’s Library & Online

Visit Glasgow Women’s Library for a discussion about feminism, sexuality, fashioning, crafting and countercultural creative industries

The Future of Scotland’s Libraries

Wednesday 17 April, 18:00 – 19:00 | National Library of Scotland

Navigating challenges and charting futures in Scotland’s libraries with leaders in the sector.

Drawing from nature: how Scotland’s Landscape shapes design

Saturday 11 May, 13:00 – 14:00 | V&A Dundee

Join us at V&A Dundee to explore how landscapes inspire designers across Scotland.

A man standing in front of a building

The Paisley weaver poet and songwriter: celebrating Robert Tannahill

Friday 17 May, 19:00 – 21:00 | Royal Society of Edinburgh

Celebrating the 250th anniversary of Paisley weaver poet and songwriter Robert Tannahill and reevaluating his legacy and cultural impact.

Louise Welsh posing for the camera

Louise Welsh in conversation with Jenny Niven

Thursday 20 May 2024, 18:00 – 19:00 | Hybrid

Witness the meeting of two Scottish literary minds in this evening of discussion and reflection between Louise Welsh and Jenny Niven.

Read More in ReSourcE Winter 2023

The Winter 2023 edition of ReSourcE also explored the pivotal role of the creative industries in shaping the future and addressing the pressing challenges of our time. Read more from contributors from the RSE Fellowship and beyond – an assembly of visionaries, authors, scholars, and industry leaders – who share their insights into the expansive impact of the creative industries.

Read ReSourcE Winter 2023 (3MB, PDF)

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