Friends of The Scotsman

Donald Morrison: Scottish bookmakers are backing a scheme to save lives

A lot of people think the bookmakers is a den of iniquity. It’s not like that.”


Polly Jones: Banking on crisis grants when your benefits don’t cover cost of essentials

Last year a food bank parcel was given out in Scotland for every copy of The Scotsman bought between 2012 and 2016. Hundreds of thousands of Scots are now turning to emergency food aid to feed themselves and their families.

Leuchie House is Scotland's dedicated respite centre for people with long-term conditions. Picture: Simon Groset

Becky Everett: Loneliness and isolation as bad for health as smoking

Loneliness is as likely to put us at risk of an early death as smoking 15 cigarettes a day and can increase our likelihood of an early death by 29 per cent.

Many young men, especially those from poorer communities, are caught up in patterns of what might be called hypermasculine behaviour and risk being left behind by a changing world. Picture: Getty

Martin Robb: Boys need help to find new ways of being men without using ‘traditional’ models

It’s not easy being a boy in 2018. Young men today face challenges that weren’t experienced by their fathers and grandfathers, including changing gender roles and the disappearance of many traditionally ‘male’ jobs, and with them many of the processes that once helped boys to make the transition to manhood.

David Watt is Chief Executive of Arts & Business Scotland.

David Watt Helping our great cultural heritage to weather the storms of cash cutbacks

This is European Year of Cultural Heritage. Under the slogan “Our heritage: where the past meets the future”, the aim is to encourage more people to discover and engage with cultural heritage in all its forms, be that tangible or intangible, natural or digital.

'Doric Boule', created in 2017 by Nick Ross, a graduate of Gray's School of Art in Aberdeen, featured a series of granite benches sourced from quarries all over the world installed in Marischal College's quad

Hillary Nicoll: Look Again... there is a lot more to Aberdeen than just grey granite

Look Again Festival of Art and Design is a relatively new fixture in the cultural calendar in Aberdeen, but one that is making an increasingly important impact on the city, not only with its annual celebration of great new art and design in public spaces, but also by encouraging creative talent to stay and work in the city.

Opinion 5
Sydney Chasin, founder of lil'POP

Edward Cunningham: Unlocking Ambition programme a route for entrepreneurs 
to realise aspirations

The Commercialisation Inquiry of 1996, which included Scottish Enterprise and the Royal Society of Edinburgh (RSE), concluded that a mechanism was needed to enable the commercialisation of the excellent research being carried out in Scottish universities and research institutes. Hence, the Enterprise Fellowship programme was created and began in 1997.

SCIAF WEE BOX Bishop William Nolan and Alistair Dutton with pupils from St Joseph's Academy Kilmarnock. Thursday 8th Feb 2018 Photo by Paul Mc Sherry SCIAF

Alistair Dutton: A WEE BOX makes a BIG difference for families in poverty

As the deadline of 8 May for our WEE BOX appeal donations being doubled by the UK government fast approaches, it’s worth celebrating how support from people in Scotland is changing lives overseas.

Fiona Hutchison, Sector Engagement Executive for Tourism, Interface

Fiona Hutchison: Let’s work together to offer tourists the best of Scotland

One dreich day years ago I was confronted by Duane Hanson’s Tourism sculpture in Glasgow’s Gallery of Modern Art. Hanson was interested in the banality of consumer society. He cast models of figures in ordinary mundane situations, in this case a couple with sunglasses and cameras gazing upwards at some unidentified spectacle with glaikit expressions.

Technology is advancing rapidly, but at least Dr Who's Cybermen haven't invaded - yet. Picture: BBC/PA

Kirsty Yuill: Technology is changing the insurance landscape

WHETHER it’s the Cybermen and the Daleks in TV’s Dr Who or the all-controlling computer HAL in 2001: A Space Odyssey, the threats posed by technology have become part and parcel of the science fiction landscape. Yet technology is no longer exclusively the preserve of sci-fi geeks; it touches every aspect of our lives – and even insurance is no exception.

News 3
Tim Hargreaves is a Chartered (UK) and European Patent Attorney for Marks & Clerk LLP

Tim Hargreaves: AI ushers in a healthcare revolution for start-ups

It’s widely held that artificial intelligence (AI) will soon come to revolutionise every part of our lives, but nowhere more so than in healthcare – and that’s an area of innovation where Scotland is firmly leading the way.

Opinion 2
John Sturrock

John Sturrock: Nelson Mandela, master of mediation

In just a couple of weeks, more than 120 mediators from all over the world will arrive in Edinburgh for the annual conference of the International Academy of Mediators. This is a wonderful occasion and a great opportunity for Scotland. Mediation in the mainstream? Quite a thought.

Scots-born John Muir was a tireless campaigner for the preservation of wild spaces in the United States and his legacy lives in on the hundreds of articles and books he wrote in his lifetime

Peter Pearson: John Muir’s ways more important than ever

According to an old biblical saying, a prophet is ­never honoured in his own country. Not so long ago, these words could have applied to John Muir, who was born 180 years ago tomorrow and rose to become a national hero in the United States after emigrating there with his family at the age of ten.

Opinion 1
The shoreline at Granton

Charlotte Johnson: Botanics pushes the boat out with shoreline exhibition

From the Forth bridges and Queensferry to the beaches of Portobello and ­Joppa, Edinburgh’s coastline communities have a proud heritage of distinct social and cultural traditions where a sense of community has endured.

Professor Richard A. Williams, Principal of Heriot-Watt University

Richard Williams and Bob Keiller: We need to work together to deliver inclusive, innovation-led growth in Scotland

Scotland has exciting, innovative businesses and world class universities. However, our growth rates are not yet what they need to be.

Opinion 1
Gary Donaldson is Head of Product at Mllar & Bryce

Gary Donaldson: Inhibitions and insolvencies can lead to deeds disasters

Buried in amongst the many critical checks that solicitors will instruct as part of the conveyancing process is a search of what most will know as the personal register or the Register of Inhibitions (RoI).

Opinion 3
Graham Rankine (gamekeeper, Whitburgh Farms), Alastair Salvesen (owner, Whitburgh Farms), Dave Parish (GWCT) and Ross MacLeod (GWCT). Picture: Keith Cowieson

Dr Dave Parish: Big Farmland Bird Count can tell us a lot

The Game & Wildlife Trust Big Farmland Bird Count takes place every year in February. For this survey GWCT encourages farmers, gamekeepers and land managers to spend just 30 minutes in one day that month noting what birds they see over the ground they manage and their approximate numbers.

Opinion 2
Vicki Swales, Head of Land Use Policy, RSPB Scotland

Vicki Swales: Farming policy a field to look at in climate change plans

Whether viewed from a global or Scottish standpoint, we face twin environmental challenges – preventing climate change and halting the loss of wildlife.

Opinion 3
Alex Nairn, Trustee of Elie Estate.

Alex Nairn: Looking forward to more baby buntings

Scottish estate managers have a wide list of responsibilities – from managing holiday lets, to creating new social housing developments, to ensuring land is being managed – both by ­ourselves and by our tenant farmers – in an environmentally ­efficient way.

Senior pupils on challenging Outward Bound courses can learn many 'soft' skills which will be of use in the world of work, while future employers can also help with active mentoring and even taking part

Bound to succeed – getting youngsters and employers outdoors together

In Scotland, our government has done much to facilitate and encourage the education sector to equip young people with the knowledge and skills they need to flourish once they enter the working world. Initiatives such as Developing the Young Workforce bring together schools and employers in working partnerships to encourage and deliver learning opportunities.

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