Five million questions to be posed on voters’ behalf

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A SCOTTISH university has launched a major project aimed at examining the issues around independence.

Organisers of the Five Million Questions project by Dundee University, which comes ahead of the planned autumn 2014 referendum, hope it will apply academic rigour to the ongoing debate, and engage with the public on all aspects of the major questions posed by the prospect of independence, through lectures and discussions.

Professor Christopher Whatley, vice-principal of Dundee University and leader of the project, said: “There is space in the debate under way in civic Scotland for deeper analysis and more profound thinking about the nature of what is under consideration in the referendum.

“Recent weeks have seen calls from the public and prominent Scots to bring a deeper, honest analysis to the debate.

“Five Million Questions will address this need.”

Prof Whatley added: “Polling tells us that it is questions of history, identity and emotional attachment that will play perhaps the most significant role in terms of the electorate’s decision-making.

“In addition there are a host of other issues – in relation to law, international relations, environment, energy, education and educational funding, to name but a few – that demand serious consideration.

“Engaging in this critical issue for Scotland [and] the UK is a responsibility of the country’s universities if they are to discharge their role as repositories of much of the nation’s knowledge, as forums where informed but radical ideas can be expressed and places from whence the public can expect some measure of wisdom.”