Join us for the new podcast series that celebrates Arts & Humanities across Scotland! The SAHA Conversations series brings together Arts & Humanities enthusiasts from different industries: from business to design, from politics to media and many others. Wherever their careers might have led them, they all share a passion for arts and humanities and recognise their important contribution to society today.
A SAHA Conversation with Christine Wilson
In this new SAHA Conversation we are joined by Christine Wilson, Interim Director of Research and Policy Insight at the British Council. Christine has been with the British Council since 2004. She is responsible for a global research and insight portfolio spanning education, arts, youth and skills, as well as exploring the role of cultural relations in supporting the UK’s soft power and foreign policy. She is series editor of the Cultural Relations Collection, which encourages new thinking in this field.
She was previously Head of Research, responsible for global standards and practice, ethics and networks. She led the Next Generation research series, which aims to engage youth voices around the world and contribute to improved policy making, and has covered countries including Nigeria, Myanmar, Lebanon, Poland, the UK and Vietnam. In 2016-17, Christine was Director of the Hammamet Conference, an international platform for leaders from North Africa and the UK to engage in dialogue following the Arab Uprisings. In 2018, she co-chaired the steering group for Peace and Beyond, an international conference to encourage new thinking and research in peacebuilding and reconciliation, and edited the conference publication.
Christine is an Advisory Board member at the Institute for Advanced Studies in the Humanities (IASH) at the University of Edinburgh, and is a Fellow of the Royal Society of Arts (RSA). She has previously served on the board of the Scotland-Malawi Partnership, and on the Scotland Committees of the UNESCO UK National Commission and of the RSA. She has studied at the Universities of Edinburgh and Ulster, and the Open University. Prior to joining the British Council, Christine was a journalist focusing on politics and civil society in Scotland.
As it has become customary by now in this SAHA conversations we ask Christine to reflect on her career trajectory but we discuss other subjects also, such as her work on international cultural relations, decolonisation and ongoing research exploring young people’s ambitions and aspirations across the world.
Resources mentioned in this episode:
Institute for Advanced Studies in the Humanities (IASH)
Next Generation research series
The Climate Connection
International Cultural Relations Research Alliance Conference 2021
The transcript for this episode is available on the SAHA web page (the Alliance Activity section).
A SAHA Conversation with Sally Mapstone
The latest episode in the SAHA Conversations series includes an insightful discussion with Professor Sally Mapstone FRSE. As Principal and Vice-Chancellor of the University of St Andrews, Professor Sally Mapstone directs the University’s Strategy and is responsible for the University’s operations. She is also Vice-Convener of Universities Scotland, a board member of Universities UK, a trustee of UCAS and of the Europaeum, Vice-Chair of the Board of the Carnegie Trust for the Universities of Scotland, and Chair of the Board of Trustees of the Higher Education Policy Institute. Sally is a medievalist with expertise in medieval and Renaissance Scottish literature. She is President of the Saltire Society, which champions Scottish culture. Sally is also a Fellow of the Royal Society of Edinburgh, our SAHA member.
In our SAHA Conversation Professor Mapstone reflects on her career trajectory and her work on medieval Scottish literature. We also discuss the advantages of having a humanities education today.
Resources mentioned in this episode:
A Sonnet a Day by Sir Patrick Stewart
Humanities Graduates and the British Economy: The Hidden Economy
The episode transcript is available on the SAHA webpage (Alliance Activity section).
A SAHA Conversation with Bridget McConnell
We continue our podcast series with a conversation with Dr Bridget McConnell. Dr Bridget McConnell has a track record of achievement in the cultural and sport sector. She has been Chief Executive of Glasgow Life since 2007 where she leads a team of over 2,500 people. During her time there, she has overseen the development of the Zaha Hadid-designed Riverside Museum, which won the 2013 European Museum of the Year; the Emirates Area; and Sir Hoy Velodrome. She was a member of the 2014 Commonwealth Games bid team and organising committee. In 2015 Bridget was awarded a CBE in the New Year Honours for Services to Culture. Bridget has links with several SAHA member institutions. An alumna of the University of St Andrews and the University of Stirlling, Bridget was also awarded honorary doctorates from the Universities of St Andrews, Aberdeen, Glasgow and The Royal Conservatoire of Scotland. She is also a fellow of the Royal Society of Edinburgh. Our SAHA Conversation focuses on arts and culture and Bridget reflects on her career trajectory and the importance of culture to support our post-covid recovery.
Resources mentioned in the episode:
COP26 – event held in Glasgow 31 Oct to 12 November 2021
The episode transcript is available here.
A SAHA Conversation with Clark McGinn
Our first guest for the SAHA Conversation series is Dr Clark McGinn. Clark is a leading consultant in the global mission-critical helicopter industry, based in London but advising international clients. He was educated at the University of Glasgow, where, in addition to graduating MA (Hons) in Philosophy, he was a noted student debater, founding the World Student Debating Competition, winning the Observer Mace and selected to represent the UK in the annual ESU Debate Tour of the USA. After university, he embarked on a thirty-year career in corporate banking and capital markets in London and New York, which pivoted in 2004 into helicopters. After creating RBS’s rotary wing business, he built the Captive Dublin lessor for the largest helicopter operator (CHC) and later, the global sales and relationship team for Waypoint Leasing. He has worked as an independent subject matter expert and consultant to leading investors and operators since 2018. Clark holds the Fellowship of the Chartered Institute of Bankers. He is also known as a speaker and writer on Robert Burns, having earned his PhD from Glasgow on the history of the Burns Supper. He is currently an Honorary Research Fellow of the Centre for Robert Burns Studies and was awarded Fellowship of the University of Glasgow for his charitable support of its alumni Burns Supper programme over many years.
In this SAHA Conversation Clark reflects on the value of an education in philosophy today and he explains how this degree has helped him in his career in the banking sector. We discuss his passion for Robert Burns also and the bard’s role in bringing people together the world over also.
Resources mentioned in this episode:
Centre for Robert Burns Studies at the University of Glasgow
Interactive map of Burns Suppers
The episode transcript is available here: https://rse.org.uk/expert-advice/scottish-arts-and-humanities-alliance/
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SAHA Conversations Promo
Announcing our new podcast series, SAHA Conversations!