Social Responsibility and Sustainability

Our Changing World

A series of public lectures examining global challenges facing society, and the role of academia in meeting these challenges.

Our Changing World logo against a background of arctic iceburgs

The Our Changing World series, now in its ninth year, is a credit-bearing course that opens its doors to the public, who we invite to attend fascinating and accessible talks alongside our students. This year's theme is 'identity'.

Leading scholars and researchers from across different disciplines around the University will discuss everything from how cultural influences shape developing identities in children, to the ethics of how our personal data can be harvested and used.

Since 2010 the Our Changing World Lectures have explored a wide range of topics from climate change, infectious diseases, stem cells and medicine, to free trade and human rights.
We welcome suggestions for future lecture series. Please let us know if you have suggestions for a speaker, or a topic that you would like to see covered.

Upcoming events

Events may be photographed and/or recorded for promotional or recruitment materials for the University and University approved third parties.

Past events

Tuesday, 13 November 2018

Driven by the increasing threat of global climate change, there is an urgent need to rapidly decarbonise the global energy system. This lecture will identify the role that carbon capture and storage technologies can play in meeting this challenge and how identifying fingerprints in gases can help to provide secure carbon dioxide storage in the subsurface.

Read about Life's a gas; identifying fingerprints in gases for future clean energy provision

Tuesday, 6 November 2018

This lecture is about sons and fathers. Or, better, it is a lecture about father-ing: father as verb, father as something-that-happens; father as continuous event.

Read about 'Out here a man settles his own problems': fathers, identity, and learning from John Wayne

Tuesday, 23 October 2018

"Man up." "Don't be such a girl." "Take it like a man"

Read about Fluid States: Gender and Identity

Tuesday, 16 October 2018

This lecture is not about ‘identity politics’, but ‘the politics of identity’

Read about Personal Identity: Implications for the Individual, Society and the State

Tuesday, 2 October 2018

The immune system has a problem with ’self’. It is able to recognise an almost infinite variety of molecular structures, including the potential to respond to our own body

Read about The immune system and the problem of identifying 'self'

Tuesday, 25 September 2018

Our personal lives are key sites of consumption. How are we contributing to a more or less sustainable planet?

Read about Identity, inequality and personal life in an unsustainable globalised world

Tuesday, 21 November 2017

Please join us for the Our Changing World Enlightenment Lecture with Roy Greenslade.

Read about Enlightenment Lecture: can journalism survive the death of newspapers?

Tuesday, 14 November 2017

George Square Lecture Theatre, The University of Edinburgh, George Square, Edinburgh, EH8 9LD

Read about Liminal states: betwixt and between sleep and wakefulness

Tuesday, 7 November 2017

George Square Lecture Theatre, The University of Edinburgh, George Square, Edinburgh, EH8 9LD

Read about Knowledge and its boundaries

Tuesday, 31 October 2017

Please join us for the Our Changing World Lecture, "Immigration and the crisis of political trust", with Professor Christina Boswell.

Read about Immigration and the crisis of political trust

Tuesday, 24 October 2017

Please join us for the Our Changing World Lecture, "Natural benefits: human-nature relationships in the contemporary world", with Dr Nina Morris.

Read about Natural benefits: human-nature relationships in the contemporary world

Tuesday, 17 October 2017

Please join us for the Our Changing World Lecture, "New phases of matter through boundaries and topology", with Dr Christopher Stock.

Read about New phases of matter through boundaries and topology

Tuesday, 10 October 2017

Please join us for the Our Changing World Lecture, "Crossing boundaries: mental health and mental disorder, care and punishment", with Professor Lindsay Thomson.

Read about Crossing boundaries: mental health and mental disorder, care and punishment

Tuesday, 3 October 2017

Please join us for the Our Changing World Lecture, "Crossing boundaries for sustainability", with Michelle Brown.

Read about Crossing boundaries for sustainability

Tuesday, 26 September 2017

Please join us for the Our Changing World Lecture, "Redrawing boundaries: religion, violence and the search for peace", with Professor Jolyon Mitchell.

Read about Redrawing boundaries: religion, violence and the search for peace

Tuesday, 22 November 2016

Join us for the Our Changing World Enlightenment Lecture, "Scientists change the world: why can’t they change their image?", with science journalist and broadcaster Quentin Cooper.

Read about Enlightenment Lecture: Scientists change the world: why can’t they change their image?

Tuesday, 15 November 2016

Join us for Our Changing World Lecture, "Climate-smart food" with Professor Dave Reay.

Read about Climate-smart food

Tuesday, 8 November 2016

Join us for the Our Changing World Lecture, "The greening of the Arctic", with Dr Isla Myers-Smith.

Read about The greening of the Arctic

Tuesday, 1 November 2016

Join us for the Our Changing World Lecture, "Genetically engineering livestock – why?" with Professor Bruce Whitelaw.

Read about Genetically engineering livestock – why?

Tuesday, 25 October 2016

Join us for the Our Changing World Lecture, "Living in a salt-saturated society – do your genes fit?" with Dr Matthew Bailey.

Read about Living in a salt-saturated society – do your genes fit?

Tuesday, 18 October 2016

Join us for the Our Changing World Lecture, "The price of anarchy: why choosing the right routes for travel matters" with Dr Kathryn Stewart.

Read about The price of anarchy: why choosing the right routes for travel matters

Tuesday, 11 October 2016

Join us for the Our Changing World Lecture, "In our own terms: evolving identities and diversities in black and minority ethnic youth" with Dr Rowena Arshad.

Read about In our own terms: evolving identities and diversities in black and minority ethnic youth

Tuesday, 4 October 2016

Join us for this Our Changing World Lecture, "Social wellbeing: the global happiness epidemic" with Dr Neil Thin.

Read about Social wellbeing: the global happiness epidemic

Tuesday, 27 September 2016

Join us for the first Our Changing World Lecture, "Scotland and Europe: the past shaping the present?" with Professor Sir Tom Devine.

Read about Scotland and Europe: the past shaping the present?