This was a diverse, imaginative and inspired talk.
- with singer songwriter Karine Polwart, Thomas McEachan (Youth Parliament0, Chris Van Der Kuyh (Dundee Games industry) The theme was Voltaire's quote during the Enlightenment - “We look to Scotland” – they asked, does Scotland still have this clout today and spoke of civic spaces for people to meet.
McEachan spoke of a greater sense of civic responsibility towards and by younger people, who were volunteering more. Start a community group, the money is there. He spoke of Scotland’s future forum the technical influences on society. He felt that Quantitative GDP numbers are not so important. He said there was so much soul destroying work many young people are enduring today – of what we value about people – we care about respect, compassion, warmth …
The Enlightenment economist Adam Smith did not only write of economics, he also wrote, The 'Theory of moral Statements of Human Empathy’. He also campaigned against slavery.
Karine gave us a few stories. The drinking dens of Edina where ideas got fermented and exchanged. The star poet Robert Fergusson, was invited to elite circles. He was friends with psychiatrist Andrew Duncan, who was devoted to the Royal Edinburgh hospital. Sadly he died young. After the death of Fergusson he used his influence to found a mental health institute. She spoke of the transformative effect of open spaces to meet in real life people not always like ourselves.
Chris Van Der Kuyh (Dundee Games industry) said we were loosing tools – is technology making things too easy? He has worked on Minecraft Game for 7 years. The games industry requires ability to think in a different way – for entrepreneurship and not accepting the status quo and for creating the impossible. Walter Scott shone a light on Scotland.
They discussed the importance of a ‘Collaborative culture.’
They expressed important routes to change -
The future is not about political voices – rather it will be team based. Politics goes in circles and does not get the big ideas. We must decide on the values for Scotland; mentor young people; share access and international collaboration.