Founded by Professor Stanley Nisbet in 1954
Home Current Programme News Stanley Nisbet Professional Developement Membership Contact Us Photo Album
"after-religionist". He is well known for his support of progressive causes, including campaigning on human rights for gay and lesbian people in both Church and State. He is a patron of LGBT Youth Scotland, an organisation dedicated to the inclusion of LGBT young people in the life of Scotland. He has questioned and addressed complex ethical issues in the areas of sexuality, drugs and bioethics. He has written extensively on these topics, being the author of more than 20 books exploring their relationship with modern religion. A Fellow of the Royal Society of Edinburgh, Holloway was Professor of Divinity at Gresham College in the City of London. From 1990 to 1997, he was a member of the Human Fertilisation and Embryology Authority and held the position of chair of the BMA Steering Group on Ethics and Genetics. He was also a member of the Broadcasting Standards Commission and is currently chair of the Scottish Arts Council and of Sistema Scotland. Dr Holloway has been a reviewer and writer for the broadsheet press for several years,including The Times, The Guardian, The Independent, Sunday Herald and The Scotsman. He is also a frequent presenter on radio and television, having hosted the BBC television series When I Get to Heaven, Holloway's Road and The Sword and the Cross. He currently hosts the BBC Radio Scotland book review programme, Cover Stories. Holloway presented the second of the Radio 4 Lent Talks on 11 March 2009. On May 28 2012, he began presenting a fifteen-minute programme about faith and doubt, following The World at One on BBC Radio 4, called Honest Doubt: The History of an Epic Struggle.

The Lecture: All That Jazz: Improvising Ethics Today
The 2012/13 Lecture was given by Dr Richard Holloway Scottish writer and broadcaster and was formerly Bishop of Edinburgh in the Scottish Episcopal Church.
Dr Richard Holloway was educated at Kelham Theological College, Edinburgh Theological College and the Union Theological Seminary, New York City. Between 1959 and 1986 he was a curate, vicar and rector at various parishes in England, Scotland and the United States. He was Bishop of Edinburgh from 1986 and was elected Primus of the Scottish Episcopal Church in 1992. He resigned from these positions in 2000 and is now regarded as one of the most outspoken and controversial figures in the Church, having taken an agnostic worldview and commenting widely on issues concerning religious belief in the modern world. His own theological position has become increasingly radical and he has recently described himself as an
The 2011 Lecture was given by Professor Anton Muscatelli  FRSA FRSE AcSS  
Principal and Vice-Chancellor of the University of Glasgow.
Anton Muscatelli is a graduate of the University who began his post as Principal on 1 October 2009. Anton Muscatelli studied at the University, where he graduated MA in Political Economy and with a PhD in Economics. He was a lecturer in Economics from 1984 and Daniel Jack Professor of Economics from 1992 until 2007. He was Dean of the Faculty of Social Sciences, 2000 to 2004, and Vice-Principal (Strategy, Budgeting and Advancement) from 2004 until 2007. He then moved to Heriot-Watt University where he was Principal and Vice-Chancellor from 2007 to 2009. Professor Muscatelli has been a consultant to the World Bank and the European Commission, and was a member of the Panel of Economic Advisers of the
Secretary of State for Scotland from 1998-2000. Since 2007, he has been an adviser to the House of Commons Treasury Select Committee on monetary policy, and in 2008 he was appointed to chair an independent expert group for the Calman Commission on Devolution, set up by the Scottish Parliament and led by the Chancellor of the University of Glasgow, Sir Kenneth Calman. This includes experts from the UK, Europe, and North America. He chaired the Research and Commercialisation Committee of Universities Scotland in 2007-08 and from 2008-2010 is Convener of Universities Scotland and Vice-President of Universities UK. He was appointed a Fellow of the Royal Society of Edinburgh in 2001, and of the CESifo Economics Research Institute in Munich in 1999.
The Lecture: “Autonomy,regulation and the performance of public Universities across Europe and the U.S. What does the evidence tell us?
The 2009 Lecture was given by Rt Hon Charles Kennedy MP
Rector of Glasgow University.
Charles Kennedy was brought up and educated just outside Fort William, before attending Glasgow University.  Following his graduation in 1982, he worked as a journalist and broadcaster with BBC Highland in Inverness. He was then awarded a Fulbright Scholarship to attend Indiana University in the United States.  In 1983 he was working towards a PhD at Indiana when the opportunity arose to seek the SDP nomination for the newly former Ross, Cromarty and  Skye seat.  Charles made a flying visit home, won the ballot and returned full time to the UK in April. The general election followed and - less than six weeks later - he was elected to the House of Commons, defeating the sitting Government Minister to become the youngest MP of the time.
Charles Kennedy was elected the UK Liberal Democrats' Party President, the equivalent of party chairman, in 1990, and served in that post until 1994. In August 1999 he was elected as the Leader of the Liberal Democrats, and he was appointed to the Privy Council in October 1999.In his six years as Leader he took the Liberal Democrats from strength to strength in local and national politics, taking some fundamental and hugely difficult political decisions.  He also took the Liberal Democrats to their most successful election performance for some 80 years when they returned 62 MPs in May 2005. He stood down as Leader of the Party in January 2006. In September 2007 Charles Kennedy was unanimously elected President of the European Movement in Britain.   Charles Kennedy was elected to his first three year term as Rector early in 2008 and re-elected for an historic second term early in 2011 - the first two consecutive terms Rector since Benjamin Disraeli.  He is elected and serves as an Independent, free from party politics.   At Westminster he is an occasional critic of the Coalition government, not least on the issue of student fees, where he has spoken and voted against UK government policy.

The Lecture: ‘Education in the New Political Landscape of Scotland’

There was no 2010 Lecture

The 2008 Lecture was given by Sir (Alastair) Muir Russell KCB DL FRSE
Civil Servant, and former Principal of Glasgow University from 2003 to 2009.
Sir Muir Russell was educated at the High School of Glasgow and graduated from Glasgow University in 1970, BSc with first class honours in Natural Philosophy. He joined the Scottish Office and during his thirty-three years as a civil servant he was Secretary of the Scottish Development Agency on its establishment in 1975; Principal Private Secretary to The Secretary of State for Scotland from 1981 to 1983; Permanent Under Secretary of State, 1998 to 1999, and Permanent Secretary to the Scottish Executive from 1999 until 2003. During his time as Principal, and under the strategy Building on Excellence, Sir Muir guided the University to improvements  
in the quality of teaching and learning, and research. Progress was based on re-establishing a sound financial platform, and the opportunities this gave to make investments in the University's resources and key activities. The results of this were apparent in the improved quality of the student experience, reflected in the consistently excellent and improving National Student Survey results, in the increasing numbers of applicants at undergraduate and post graduate levels, both home and international and in the University's high reputation for the quality of its teaching. Research too made progress with many areas leading Scotland, some amongst the top in the UK. He left the University, its reputation enhanced, and with a stronger sense of ambition for the future.
The Lecture: ‘The Good and the Best; Creating Scotland’s Educational Future’
The 2007 Lecture was given by Professor Sir Kenneth Calman KCB,DL,FRCP, FRCS, FRSE
Chancellor of the University of Glasgow.
Sir Kenneth Charles Calman was elected Chancellor of the University in 2006. He is a graduate who was appointed to the Cancer Research Chair of Oncology in 1974 and became Professor and Dean of Postgraduate Medical Education in 1984. He was awarded an honorary DSc in 1996. Calman graduated from the University BSc, MB ChB, PhD and MD and lectured in Surgery before his appointment to the Cancer Research Chair in 1974. In 1989 he was appointed Chief Medical Officer at the Scottish Office Home and Health Department. He was Chief Medical Officer at the Department of Health in London from 1989 to 1991 and worked in the Department of Education
and Science and its successors from 1991 until his appointment as Vice-Chancellor and Warden at the University of Durham in 1998. He was made a Knight Commander of the Order of the Bath in 1996, and is a Fellow of the Royal College of Physicians, the Royal College of Surgeons and the Royal Society of Edinburgh.In 1998, he was appointed Vice-Chancellor and Warden of Durham University. His time as vice-chancellor saw the expansion and integration of the campus at Stockton-on-Tees, with two colleges being established there in 2001 and the campus being renamed Queen's Campus during the 2003 Golden Jubilee celebrations. A new college was also opened in 2006, Josephine Butler College. There has also been a return to the teaching of medicine at Durham, with students doing their pre-clinical studies at Queen's Campus before transferring to Newcastle to complete the clinical part of their degrees. His time as vice-chancellor also saw the closure of the Department of East Asian Studies in 2007. Professor Calman retired as Warden in 2006 and was succeeded by Professor Christopher Higgins. Professor Calman was a member of the Nuffield Council on Bioethics from 2000-2008. He chaired its inquiry on the Ethics of research related to healthcare in developing countries from 2000-2002, and was a member of the Working Party on Public health(2006-2007) On 23 January 2006, it was announced Professor Calman had been elected Chancellor of the University of Glasgow by the General Council of the University. 
The Lecture: 'The Role of the University in the 21st Century'
The 2000 Lecture was given by Stewart Ross Sutherland, Baron Sutherland of HoundwoodKTFRSEFBAFKC 
British academic and public servant and one of the UK's most distinguished philosophers of religion.
He was educated at Robert Gordon's College. In 1963 he graduated from the University of Aberdeen with a first-class Master of Arts in Philosophy, and received a Master of Arts in the Philosophy of Religion from Corpus Christi College, Cambridge in 1965. He was then appointed assistant lecturer in Philosophy at the University College of North Wales, and three years later returned to Scotland as a lecturer at the University of Stirling. In Stirling, he established the Religious Studies department and recruited John Drane and the late Glyn Richards to work
alongside him in this enterprise. Then in 1977 he became Professor of the History and Philosophy of Religion at King's College London, and was subsequently appointed Vice-Principal and Principal there in 1981 and 1985 irespectively.In 1990, Sutherland became Vice-Chancellor of the University of London, and was appointed Chief Inspector of Schools two years later. He succeeded this post as Principal and Vice-Chancellor of Edinburgh University, in which position he served until 2002. He was the Provost of Gresham College between 2002 and 2008. In 1992, he was elected to the British Academy, and in 1995 he became a Fellow of the Royal Society of Edinburgh, the same year he was knighted and became President in 2002. Following his involvement in the establishment of the Age Concern Institute of Gerontology at King's College London, he was invited by the incoming Blair government in 1997 to chair a Royal Commission on Long-Term Care of Older People. This recommended that government (including the NHS and local authorities) should be responsible for providing free care in the spirit of the NHS Act to all people even if their illness takes the form of a chronic mental frailty. His recommendations were taken up by the devolved Scottish government, though were never implemented for England and Wales.
The Lecture: ‘Good Schools - Mirrors or Lamps’

 Copyright © 2011 All rights reserved.

The 2014/15 Stanley Nisbet Lecture was given by Kenneth Roy.

Journalist, Writer, Broadcaster and editor of Scottish Review.

Kenneth Roy was born in Falkirk in 1945, and once had the honour of being named his native town’s Man of the Year. He was educated at Denny High School, but left as soon as possible in order to become a cub reporter on the Falkirk Mail, where his responsibilities included covering the twice-weekly dog meeting (he was briefly a greyhound racing tipster for the Daily Record) and reviewing films, a job which did not involve actually going to see any films.

At the age of 19 he became one of the youngest reporters ever employed by the Glasgow Herald (as it then was). He founded Scottish Theatre magazine at the age of 24 and was presenting Reporting Scotland on BBC Television by the age of 27. For nine years he presented political and religious as well as current affairs programmes on both television and radio. He left the BBC to establish a new independent local radio station. in south-west Scotland, and was West Sound’s first managing director.

In 1983 he founded Carrick Media which publishes Who’s Who in Scotland and other reference titles. He established Scottish Review magazine in 1994.

He resumed his journalistic career — abandoned 21 years earlier — as a weekly columnist with the launch edition of Scotland on Sunday, in 1988. Later he wrote a weekly column for The Herald (as it now was), a daily column for The Scotsman, and a weekly column for The Observer. He was twice Critic of the Year in Scotland and in 1994 he was named Columnist of the Year in the annual UK Press Gazette awards.

He has been Editor of Scottish Review since 1995 (now published online with a weekly readership of around 30,000). In 2000 he founded the Institute of Contemporary Scotland which runs the Young Scotland, Young United Kingdom and Young International Programmes.  His most recent book is The Invisible Spirit: A life of post-war Scotland 1945-75, which was the only book by a Scottish author to be included in the Guardian Books of the Year for 2013.

His books include Travels in a Small Country, Conversations in a Small Country, Both Sides of the Border, A Man of His Word (in honour of Alastair Hetherington), and The Closing Headlines (an account of his career in broadcasting).

He is married with two children and lives in Ayrshire.

Article Courtesy of Scots Independent

The Lecture: The end of Literacy?

Past Lecture Speakers