Tea & Talk Podcast Cover

Are you a naturally curious person?

Following on from our successful Tea & Talk series held during our Curious 2019 summer events programme, the concept expanded upon to provide access to experts talking on a wide range of subjects and provide the opportunity for listeners to learn something new, expand their horizons and hear from national and world experts in their respective disciplines.

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Series 1: Covid-19’s impact on society

The pilot series of Tea and Talk with the RSE focuses on the impact of Covid-19 on the different industries and areas of society, looking at how they have built up resilience and the steps needed to emerge from the other side of the pandemic.

Featuring conversations with Professor Dame Anne Glover, Dr Deborah O’Neil, Professor Stephen Reicher, Dr Stella Chan, Talat Yaqoob, Fergus Linehan and Professor Nasar Meer.


Dr Rebekah Widdowfield chats with Professor Dame Anne Glover about the importance of using science and scientific evidence to inform government policy and how these have been used in the UK during the Covid-19 crisis.
Dr Rebekah Widdowfield chats with Dr Deborah O’Neil about the efficacy of creating drugs, how the vaccine development process works, current efforts being made to produce treatments for COVID-19, and how the current pandemic has affected our approach to global production and collaboration.
Rebekah Widdowfield chats with Professor Stephen Reicher about the science and analysis of public behaviours during the Covid-19 pandemic.
Rebekah Widdowfield and Dr Stella Chan discuss how lockdown and the Covid-19 pandemic have affected people’s mental health, how mental health services may be impacted post-lockdown and coping strategies for difficult times like the present.
Rebekah Widdowfield and Talat Yaqoob discuss how Covid-19 has highlighted inequalities across various sectors across the country, including the economy, employment, healthcare and childcare.
Rebekah Widdowfield chats to Fergus Linehan about the impact Covid-19 has had on Arts & Culture, how the way we consume art has changed and what roads to recovery for venues and festivals are possible.
Rebekah Widdowfield and Nasar Meer discuss the impact of Covid-19 on black and ethnic minority groups across Scotland and the UK.

Series 2: What does a post-covid scotland look like?

Series two of Tea and Talk with the RSE looks at what society could look like on the other side of the pandemic and the work being undertaken by the RSE Post-Covid-19 Futures Commission. What positive changes could be made from the lessons learned over the past year?

Featuring conversation with Caroline Gardner, Professor Niamh Nic Daéid, Dame Seona Reid, Professor Dame Anna Dominiczak and Professor Sir Ian Boyd.


Rebekah Widdowfield chats with Caroline Gardner about learning from the pandemic to support inclusive public services and innovative thinking.
Rebekah Widdowfield chats with Professor Niamh Nic Daéid about using the learning from the Covid-19 pandemic to enhance Scotland’s ability to effectively utilise data, evidence, and science in preparing for and responding to future challenges.
Dr Rebekah Widdowfield talks to Dame Seona Reid about the impact of Covid-19 on culture and the creative arts.
Rebekah Widdowfield talks to Professor Dame Anna Dominiczak about launching the Lighthouse Labs, the UK’s capacity for testing at such scale and the need for collaboration between science and industry.
Rebekah Widdowfield chats with Professor Sir Ian Boyd about using the learning from Covid-19 to enhance Scotland’s resilience to deal with large-scale disruptions and challenges of the future.

Series 3: Tackling inequality in scotland

Covid-19 highlighted a lot of the inequalities we face in society. Series three of Tea and Talk with the RSE looks at some of the different forms of inequality that exist in Scotland and how we can tackle them to become a fairer society.

Featuring conversations with Talat Yaqoob, Louise Macdonald, Professor Graham Watt CBE, Professor Lynn Abrams, Professor Ian Rivers, Professor Nick Watson, Theresa Shearer and Professor Alison Phipps.


Rebekah Widdowfield talks to Talat Yaqoob and Louise Macdonald about improving both public debate and participation by looking at how the public has been informed and engaged during the Covid-19 pandemic.
Scotland compares very poorly with other countries in Europe and even within the UK when it comes to health inequalities, but why?
Dr Rebekah Widdowfield and Professors Lynn Abrams and Ian Rivers discuss how to solve gender and LGBTI equality and diversity issues in a modern Scotland.
A discussion on the inequalities and future of social care and welfare systems that many people with disabilities rely on in a post-pandemic economy.
Dr Rebekah Widdowfield discusses the issues asylum seekers and refugees face in a post-Brexit Britain with RSE Fellow, Professor Alison Phipps.

Series 4: Climate change and COP26

Coinciding with COP26 being held in Glasgow, Series four of Tea and Talk with the RSE looks at how climate change is affecting our country and society, what actions need to follow from COP26, and what life might look like in a world working towards net-zero.

Featuring conversations with Professor James Curran, Professor Duncan Maclennan, Dr Sandro Carnicelli, Dr Leslie Mabon, Professor Gordon Masterton, Professor Iain Docherty, Professor Maggie Gill, Professor Colin Campbell, Professor Jim Skea and Professor Camilla Toulmin.


We chat to Professors James Curran and Duncan Maclennan FRSE about the impact of climate change on Scottish cities, and the policy and lifestyle changes needed in order to make cities more environmentally friendly.
We chat with members of the RSE Young Academy of Scotland, Dr Sandro Carnicelli and Dr Leslie Mabon about the impacts of climate change on tourism.
We speak to RSE Fellows Professor Gordon Masterton and Professor Iain Docherty about transport, mobility and what net-zero means in practice.