The Assembly will be made up of a minimum of 100 people randomly recruited from across Scotland. The membership will be selected to be broadly representative of the adult population (16 and over) in terms of age, gender, socio-economic class/educational qualifications, ethnic group, geography and political attitudes.
Members will meet to discuss and deliberate on Scotland’s future.
Elected or appointed representatives (including MSPs, MPs, MEPs, councillors and Members of the House of Lords), the staff of political parties, public appointees and senior public and civil servants and the representatives or officials of relevant advocacy groups will all be ineligible to be Assembly members.
Recruitment for the members took place over the summer, 2019. It was carried out by Mark Diffley Consultancy and Research Ltd following a competitive tender process.
The Conveners are responsible for:
Stewarding the Assembly, by overseeing the planning arrangements in order that the Assembly delivers its remit.
Convening meetings of the Assembly, by hosting them and contributing to them.
Representing the Assembly, the media and in public and speaking on their behalf.
Read the Scottish Government News Release for more about the appointment of the Conveners.
Kate is a third sector leader who has trained in fine art. She has works for art organisations across Northern Ireland and Scotland since 1990.
Currently Kate is the Director of North Edinburgh Arts, which provides opportunities for individual and community development through contact with the professional arts. The organisation is active in the local regeneration process, advocating the role of the artist and creativity as positive forces within the dynamic of a community in flux.
She is also Chair of Scotland’s Regeneration Forum (SURF) and sits on the boards of Tinderbox Orchestra and North Edinburgh Childcare. Previously she led Edinburgh’s Capital City Partnership Arts For Inclusion programme.
Kate is particularly interested in how art can change the public realm and public imagination, working with artists whose practice takes them beyond the boundaries of the institution, studio or theatre.
David was a Scottish Labour Member of the European Parliament for 35 years (1984-2019). He was the longest serving UK MEP and longest serving Vice President (1989-2004), gaining extensive experience of the political systems in Scotland and Europe and effective forms of engaging with the public. As Vice President of the Parliament, David was responsible for budget and strategic oversight of the institution.
Based on this experience, he was appointed Professor of Public Policy at the University of Glasgow. In 2013 he was awarded an Honorary Doctorate from the University of the Punjab for services to EU-Pakistan relations.
David is a member of the First Minister’s Standing Council on Europe which provides advice to the First Minister on Brexit and the European Union. He holds a BA (Hons) in Economics and an MA in European Management and Employment Law.
A Secretariat has been established to help the conveners ensure the efficient running of the Assembly. The Secretariat is staffed by a mixed team of civil servants and people with direct experience in running Citizens’ Assemblies.
Independent research for Scottish Government on the Citizens’ Assembly of Scotland will evaluate the success of the Assembly as a model of public engagement in Scotland, and contribute to the developing global evidence on democratic innovation.
The research is being undertaken collaboratively by Scottish Government Social Research and independent researchers from the University of Edinburgh and Newcastle University. The research team is Dr Evelyn Bowes and Dr Nick Bland, Scottish Government Social Researchers working with Professor Ailsa Henderson, University of Edinburgh, Dr Oliver Escobar, Edinburgh Futures Institute, University of Edinburgh and Dr Stephen Elstub, Newcastle University. The time of the independent academics is funded by their academic institutions. You can read more in the common questions section.