Founded by Edinburgh’s Town Council in 1583, the University of Edinburgh is the oldest university in the English-speaking world to be established on a civic foundation and as such, we place special importance on how we engage with our city, our region and its various communities.
The University of Edinburgh has had a strong association with the City of Edinburgh and its local communities. In the early 20th century, this relationship was exemplified by the University Settlement movement, which sought to alleviate poverty across the city and empower communities. Fast forward 80 years, and the University is now a key partner in the Edinburgh and South East Scotland City Region Deal, where we put our excellence in research and education at the service of communities, government and industry, to realise the benefits of data driven innovation and promote inclusive economic growth.
In 2016, the University of Edinburgh became the first university in Scotland to have a formal community engagement strategy, and our University strategy - Strategy 2030 - reinforces the significance of our relationship with our communities even more, by placing social and civic responsibility at the forefront of our ambitions. This strategy commits us to deliver positive change locally and regionally, as well as globally, and that has been the driver for our Talent in the Community plan.
In the spirit of co-creation, we are developing our wide range of educational activities with communities, both external to the University as well as with our own staff and students. We reach out to local schools, colleges and civic organisations, to better understand how we can offer education opportunities that are needed in the context of the community we serve. We engage with local companies, to help us plan and deliver our vision, and we remain committed to seeing the impact of our work cascades widely and effectively. To this end we offer a series of seminars and other events to engage our community locally and world wide, and we we will establish an Advisory Board that involves key stakeholders to help us shape and direct our plans.