The 221st lecture series
Change of Date Please note that the talk by Baroness Helena Kennedy KC in now on Thursday 10th November, same time and same venue.
The Royal Philosophical Society of Glasgow was founded in 1802, when the term ‘philosophy’ meant knowledge in the broadest sense. The Society provides stimulating lectures and discussion for members on a great diversity of topics.
Our 220th season has just ended, and we are now planning the lectures, member trips and events for next season, beginning in September 2022.
See below for details of the exciting line-up of speakers for 2022.
If you are someone who enjoys learning about what is happening in the world around you, being introduced to new discoveries and exposed to new ideas, and are not already a member, then join us and expand your horizons!
- 12 Oct, 22Upcoming26 Oct, 22Upcoming10 Nov, 22Upcoming23 Nov, 22Upcoming
Previous eclectic, diverse lectures from leading figures
See Professor Lars Chittka's talk for the society "The Mind of the Bee" from January 2021. Bees have a diverse instinctual repertoire that allows the functioning of the beehive like a smoothly oiled factory, with different workers specialising in comb construction, climate control system, defence and foraging for nectar and pollen. However, the richness of bees’ instincts has traditionally been contrasted with the notion that bees’ small brains allow little behavioural flexibility and learning behaviour.Watch now
When he receives an invitation to deliver a lecture in the Ukrainian city of Lviv, international lawyer Philippe Sands begins a journey on the trail of his family’s secret history. In doing so, he uncovers a series of unlikely coincidences that lead him halfway across the world, to the origins of modern international law, in the 1945 ‘moment’ and at the Nuremberg trial. ‘East West Street’: on the origins of genocide and crimes against humanity, on the individual and the group. See Prof Philippe Sands lecture for the Royal Phil.Watch now
Active since 1802 to present day
0n the 5th November 1802, three Glaswegian gentlemen, John Roberton, William Douglas, and Peter Nicholson, acting on behalf of a number of others in the city who were ‘interested in the prosperity of the Trades and Manufactures of their country’, and anxious for ‘the improvement of the Arts and Sciences’ ...Find out more
We are really excited to be moving into our new home (as soon as conditions allow) in the brand new James McCune Smith lecture theatre, part of the new development at Glasgow University. There we will have the latest facilities for our talks and social activities.Learn more
In March 2022, there was a very successful three day trip to York which was packed with interesting and informative visits and talks. The trip also provided an opportunity to meet with a similar organisation to ours, this being the Yorkshire Philosophical Society (YPS).See more about the trip
Join the Society
Membership brings free access to all talks as well as other benefits. After each talk you can meet the lecturer and other society members over a glass of wine.
Membership brings free access to all talks as well as other benefits.
12Talks per year900Active Members220Years of history
Wednesday 28th September 2022 William Dalrymple Historian, Author and Broadcaster William Dalrymple is one of Britain’s great historians and the bestselling author of the Wolfson Prize-winning White Mughals, The Last…
Professor Rhian M. Touyz is Executive Director and Chief Scientific Officer of the Research Institute of the McGill University Health Centre, Montreal, Quebec. Prof. Touyz is recognized internationally as an…
Delivered by the most outstanding academics in the UK and beyond, the British Academy’s flagship lecture programme showcases the very best scholarship in the humanities and social sciences. The quality…
The establishment of Highlands and Islands Development Board in 1965 was at the time a unique experiment to improve economic and social conditions for the people of the Highlands and…
Professor Sally Mapstone joined the University of St Andrews as Principal and Vice-Chancellor in September 2016. She had previously served since 2009 as Pro-Vice-Chancellor for Personnel and Equality and since…
The Thoughts the Civilized Keep: How to Reclaim Human Intelligence in an Age of Machine Thinking
Prof Shannon Vallor
Professor Shannon Vallor I am the Baillie Gifford Chair in the Ethics of Data and Artificial Intelligence at the University of Edinburgh's Edinburgh Futures Institute, where I am also appointed…