Help choose a speaker


All members of the Society are eligible (and indeed encouraged) to submit names of potential speakers, bearing in mind the Criteria for Selection of Speakers (below).

Suggestions should be sent to George Rawlinson, our Administrator, in the first instance, and may be submitted at any time throughout the session, by email or by post

By post: George Rawlinson, 15 Lanark Street, Glasgow, G1 5PY
By e-mail:

It would be helpful, but not essential, if proposals were made on-line here:

Please fill in as much information as you can about the proposed speaker on the form but in- depth research is definitely not required!

In order to keep to our timetable (outlined below) normally only those suggestions which are submitted prior to the AGM of the current session can be considered.


S/he should

be a person of distinction and reputation in his/ her discipline or area of expertise
have proven experience and acknowledged skill in communicating with non-specialist audiences
be willing to engage in a lively Q and A session.
be willing to speak without a fee.
not have lectured to the Society in the past five years


Speakers are selected around 16 months prior to the beginning of the session in which they will give their lectures. For example, as Session 215 begins, the programme for Session 216 (2017/8) is virtually complete (barring the usual caveats re accidents, acts of God, etc.)

The Speaker Group, a sub-committee of Council, chaired by a Vice President or other senior office bearer, is composed of about eight members of Council, each having expertise in one or more of the subject areas normally covered in our lecture programme, viz. Medicine, Arts and Humanities, Sciences, Social Sciences, Business, Law, Public Affairs, etc. The Speaker Group meets shortly after the AGM in April and considers the long list of suggestions. If necessary, it will meet again prior to the June Council Meeting, but in any event the Group is expected to present to that Council Meeting a shortlist of around thirty names. This will be pruned by Council to about twenty. From these names the programme for the session after the current one is created. Ideally that programme should be more or less in place by October/November of the current session.

In drawing up the programme Council considers

Breadth of topics; Gender balance ; Geographical spread, and of course, the availability of speakers