Check out our next Beltane Breakfast! + what else is coming up

We’ve tidied up after Explorathon and the NUCLEUS conference (and, okay, the Fringe too) and are kicking off our autumn/winter programme with our October Beltane Breakfast! Come along on Friday 28th October to meet screenwriter Krysty Wilson-Cairns and find out how you can work with her.

We’re playing catch-up with our scheduling, but things we know are coming this academic year are below. The list is being added to as we speak (and may be tweaked in light of the current Beltane business planning), but we don’t expect major changes.


Krysty Wilson-Cairns, the subject of our October Beltane Breakfast

Krysty Wilson-Cairns, the subject of our October Beltane Breakfast

Breakfasts, Twilights and Engaging Sessions

Our programme of Breakfasts and Twilights for this year will include a session to share information from the NCCPE’s Lessons from the REF event, and more information about the STEAM Summer School.

Also, our partners at Heriot-Watt Engage will be running their Engaging Sessions programme throughout the academic year. These monthly events run 1-3pm at Heriot-Watt’s Riccarton campus and cover different aspects of public engagement with research, including evaluation, artists-in-residence and UK policy. The sessions are open to staff and research students from all universities in Edinburgh. Subscribe to HW Engage’s mailing list to be the first to know about them!

Beltane Fellowships

Beltane Fellowships are returning! The funding model is a wee bit different (cash for projects rather than time), but a call is imminent. We had a good meeting earlier this week with the new Head of Scotland’s Futures Forum, Robert Littlejohn, so we’re hopeful the Fellowships will include (but not be limited to) an opportunity to work with the Parliament once more.


  • Making Conversations Count (AKA dialogue and facilitation skills ): 2 days during the second week in December 2016
  • Voice and presentation skills: December 2016 (tbc)
  • Research, Researchers and the Media (AKA media training): Easter 2017
  • The Workshop Workshop (running workshops and drop-ins for public audiences – notably science festival audiences): Feb/March 2017 (tbc)
  • Gamification, science busking, storytelling and evaluation: We will probably run these in the summer of 2017 as preparation for Explorathon 2017
2016 Cabaret of Dangerous Ideas

2016 Cabaret of Dangerous Ideas

Cabaret of Dangerous Ideas

The next call for the Cabaret of Dangerous Ideas will be out very soon, with a deadline for show ideas of early December 2016. We will run three bootcamps in 2017 (January, April and June) to prepare our 2017 performers and other contributors!

FameLab 2017

This international science communication competition is returning to Scotland! This year, our colleagues at Heriot-Watt Engage are taking the organisational helm. The Edinburgh heat and Scottish final will be at or shortly after Christmas-time.

PhD in an Hour

We’ll shortly be advertising for people for sessions starting Feb 2017. You can find out more about PhD in an Hour here.

EU Researchers’ Night 2017

#Brexit or not, Explorathon is definitely happening in 2017; specifically, it’ll be on Friday 29th September 2017. We’ll be issuing a call for researchers to contribute to the different events in early 2017. You can read about how 2016 went here.

Beltane Annual Gathering 2017

We’re hoping – just hoping – that we might manage to hit the date of the other Beltane Festival this year and get it at the end of April or start of May 2017! We still need to discuss the theme with our partners and Advisory Group. (Heather and I have been getting excited about Geddes again.)

logoPint of Science

(This isn’t a Beltane-driven event, but we are helping where Beltane can with speakers, venues etc.) The second Edinburgh Pint of Science takes place in May 2017. The Edinburgh team is currently looking for volunteers.


Other things going in the background will be NUCLEUS, the ongoing Scottish Parliament and Universities Knowledge Exchange Seminars (attendance by invitation only) and, at the University of Edinburgh, meetings of the Edinburgh Public Engagement Forum (EPEF) and support for TEDx University of Edinburgh.