News Archive


Back to the news page

The Edinburgh Lectures 2009-10 'Making Scotland'

The Edinburgh Lectures 2009-10

The theme for this year's Edinburgh Lectures series is 'Making Scotland'.

It focuses on "how physical, political, commercial and cultural issues shape our country and its people and Scotland's role on the global stage".

First launched in 1992, the Edinburgh Lectures take place throughout the autumn and winter and are open to the public.

This year's programme commemorates a number of notable anniversaries, including the 10th anniversary of devolution, the 150th anniversary of Charles Darwin's birth, the centenary of the Women's Suffrage Movement in Edinburgh.

Comprising 13 topical lectures in all, the series will see a host of luminaries taking to the stage, including the producers of the highly popular television series 'A History of Scotland', Edinburgh International Film Festival director Hannah McGill and the celebrated Scots artist and playwright John Byrne.

Other highlights in the line-up include Eric Booth, a member of President Barack Obama's culture team, who will give a talk on 'The Brass Tacks of a 21st Century Culture'; and HRH Prince El Hassan bin Talal of Jordan, with a lecture entitled 'Inching Towards Peace: A New International Humanitarian Order'.

Lord Provost George Grubb said: "Since 1992, the Edinburgh Lectures have provided a platform for prestigious speakers to address issues of national and international significance. We're delighted to have created a stunning line-up of speakers for this year's Making Scotland series, which will focus on how physical, political, commercial and cultural issues shape our country and its people and Scotland's role on the global stage."

The lectures are led by the Council and presented in partnership with the University of Edinburgh, Heriot Watt University, Edinburgh Napier University, Queen Margaret University, the Open University in Scotland, National Museums of Scotland, the Scottish Arts Council, Scottish Government and The Royal Society of Edinburgh.

The full programme and booking details can be found at:

In a late change to the programme, Baroness Helena Kennedy QC will now give the opening lecture on1 October, focusing on the topic of democracy.

Lady Kennedy stepped in at short notice after the programmed speaker, Helen Steven, was taken ill.   The opening lecture will still be introduced by Councillor Deidre Brock, Culture and Leisure Convenor, and Chaired by Janet Fenton from the Edinburgh Peace and Justice Centre. Lady Kennedy's lecture on democracy will compliment the huge range of events and activities taking place as part of Gude Cause, which was formed to commemorate the 1909 suffrage procession in Edinburgh.  

Helen Steven has worked tirelessly on this campaign so it is a great pity she cannot deliver her lecture. We wish her a very speedy recovery.

Back to the news page