September 2015

September 2015

24th September 2015: RSE@ScottishBorders: A Sixteenth Century Murder Mystery: Who Killed Lord Darnley?

Read the summary report on the discussion about Who Killed Lord Darnley?

Speakers: Professor Sue Black FRSE, Director, Centre for Anatomy and Human Identification, University of Dundee
Professor Niamh Nic Daeid FRSE, Professor of Forensic Science, University of Dundee
Dr Richard Shepherd, leading forensic pathologist and
Dr Karly Kehoe, Lecturer in History, Glasgow Caledonian University

A re-examination of the evidence alluding to the murder of Lord Darnley, husband of Mary Queen of Scots, at Kirk o' Field in February 1567. Professor Sue Black chaired a multidisciplinary team, including an historian, a pathologist and a fire and explosions expert, in an attempt to resolve the 'cold case' of Lord Darnley's murder in the light of modern investigative techniques.

14th September 2015: Lecture: The Twist in Light’s Tail

Speaker: Professor Miles J Padgett FRS FRSE, Vice-Principal for Research and Kelvin Chair of Natural Philosophy (Physics and Astronomy), University of Glasgow

Read the summary lecture of Professor Padgett's lecture The Twist in Light's Tail

Click here to view a PDF version of the slides used during this presentation

Light’s energy is fundamental to life. But in addition to energy, light beams carry a momentum. A laser pointer shining at you both makes you slightly hotter and pushes you away. This push force is approximately the weight of a single biological cell. Beyond the energy and push of light, my own team’s interest is light’s twist. Making cells dizzy (an optical spanner) is fun, but our work also includes light’s twist to increase the data capacity of communication systems and provide new insights into quantum science.

This Lord Kelvin prize lecture formed a part of an RSE Ordinary Meeting and was preceded by Society business, such as Fellows signing the roll.

14th-15th September 2015: Conference: Constitutional Change in Canada and the UK - Challenges to Devolution and Federalism

Canadian federalism and British devolution face new challenges. There are questions over the right level for social solidarity and welfare. There are disputes about fiscal decentralisation and transfers. Policy issues cut across the levels of government, calling for new forms of intergovernmental cooperation. Party politics is reconfiguring at different levels. The courts play an increasing role in settling disputes amongst levels of government. There are questions of national recognition and the place of Scotland and Quebec. The conference brought together scholars from Canada and Scotland for a comparative analysis of these questions and what each country can learn from the other.

Read the report of this event here.

The presentations from the two day conference are available here:

Intergovernmental Relations in Canada by George Anderson;
Inequality and Decentralization in Canada by Professor Keith Banting;
Fiscal Federalism: Scotland by Professor David Bell;
Multilevel Party Systems by Professor Michael Keating;
Plurinational Federalism and Constitutional Accommodation
by Professor Guy Laforest;
Rescaling welfare? Assessing the Prospects and Implications of the Devolution of UK Social Security
by Professor Nicola McEwen;
Legal Issues and Constitutional Jurisprudence by Professor Tom Mullen;
Intergovernmental Relations in the UK by Dr Bettina Petersohn;
Multilevel Party Systems by Professor Lori Thorlakson;
‘Popular Constitutional Amendment’: Referendums and Constitutional Change in Canada and the United Kingdom by Professor Stephen Tierney;
Fiscal Federalism by Professor François Vaillancourt.


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