Language Symposium in association with the Scottish Government

Speak to the Future Symposium


Following the success of the London Symposium, in which industry and policy leaders from around the world flew in to give a full day of exclusive talks, discussions and panel sessions on the impact of Brexit on the language industry, titled ‘Speaking to a Global Future: The Language Landscape Post-Brexit’ we are proud to announce that we are bringing the Symposium to Scotland for the very first time!

In association with the Scottish Government and Speak to the Future, the symposium will run on Saturday from 10am – 2pm and will approach a varied series of topics regarding the role and current state of languages and language learning on a global scale.


Key Panel Members:

1.         Co chair of SIG Education – Bruce Robertson

2.         Scottish government – Sue Langlands

3.         Speak to the future – Bernadette Holmes MBE

4.         Bilingualism Matters, University of Edinburgh – Professor Antonella Sorace

5.         Education Scotland – Louise Glen

6.         SCILT – Fhiona Mackay

7.         Business Language Champion  – Eric Balish (of ABC Bank)

8.         Matthias Postel (Representing CIOL

9.         UCMLS – Marion Spöring


Running Order for the Day:





Coffee / registration



 Introduction and purpose of the day.

Scottish Government – Sue Langlands


Bilingualism matters – evidence from research about the wide-ranging benefits of bilingualism in the brain to critical thinking, educational achievement across the curriculum, employability and soft skills

Professor Antonella Sorace


Redefining the landscape post-Brexit – the role of language and culture in meeting the challenges of a world in flux.  This session will draw on the recent Born Global policy research in languages in employment and demonstrate why language learning is a vital component of education for the 21st century.

Bernadette Holmes MBE


Lunch and networking



Multilingual Scotland – an overview of the current state of language education and the 1+2  policy aspirations .

Policy aspirations – Scottish Government – Sue Langlands

Policy in schools – Education Scotland – Louise Glen

Policy support – SCILT – Fhiona Mackay


Panel discussion. Supplemented by live issues arising from panellists’ input.



Chaired by SCILT

Responses from Politician/Business Champion/SCILT/Antonella Sorace/Education Scotland/Bernadette Holmes/ CIOL


Have your say – audience Q/A


13.55 – 14.00

The Final Word – Key messages from the symposium and a call to action

Scottish Government – Sue Langlands


Feel free to make your way into the main show!


Entrance to the Symposium is currently by invitation only but a number of invites will be offered up to attendees so do remember to register for free attendance to the larger show if you haven’t already done so here!


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