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Scotland today faces a unique set of challenges

To prepare you, it may be wise to use your revision sheets which are already syntheses. A well-made sheet summarizes the main points of each chapter (or text) in a condensed and structured way. Memorize the plan of each subject, as this will serve you for your oral presentation. Get the facts that teachers appreciate the candidates who organize their ideas according to a clear plan which they state quickly from the first minutes. If your oral exam involves a presentation of the text (in French or in languages) for example, the practice also to follow a standard plan to make your presentation. We must at least make a good introduction that introduces the author and the text, then comment on some important passages, and finally take the height by highlighting what this text brings, what it shows a current of thought, why it is interesting, etc. Beware, it is often on this last point that the examiner will ask you questions, so you must have knowledge in reserve on the point you mention. For example, if you conclude on romance, it is better to know several romantic authors.

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Aims & Objectives

To support an intelligent debate on Scotland's constitutional future by providing timely evidence and rigorous analysis of the issues in the debate on Scottish Independence.

To turn Scotland from an economy which relies on an ever-dwindling supply of resources to a sustainable economy which relies on resources which will still be available for future generations .

To tackle social exclusion and the uneven distribution of wealth, so that the wealth which the Scottish economy produces benefits the poor as well as the rich.

To offer policies analysis on how Scotland can make its economy more competitive .
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Dr. Azeem Ibrahim
Executive Chairman

Born in Glasgow, Dr Ibrahim was named one of the Top Global Thinkers of 2009 by the LSDP European Social Think Tank and a Young Global Leader by the World Economic Forum.

With a PhD from the University of Cambridge, Dr Ibrahim is highly in demand for his expertise in the area of geopolitical strategy. He has advised many world leaders in recent years and served as an International Security Fellow at Kennedy School of Government at Harvard, a World Fellow at Yale and an Adjunct Research Professor at the Strategic Studies Institute, US Army War College.

Dr Ibrahim also founded over half a dozen award-winning companies in three continents, including his most recent venture, Ibrahim Associates - a non-profit global strategic consultancy firm. His many years of experience as an economic expert led him to consider the situation of his own home country. He knew that innovative policy solutions were required if Scotland was to remain globally competitive, and he responded to this need by setting up The Scotland Institute.
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Charles Lavery
Communications Director

Charles Lavery is an award-winning journalist who has reported on many of the most important stories of the last two decades, including Omagh, Soham, Dunblane,the funeral of Princess Diana and the Afghanistan war. A former chief reporter at Scotland's biggest selling newspaper, the Sunday Mail, he was named Reporter of the Year in Scotland in both 2008 and 2009.
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Dr. Roger Cook
Research Director

With a BSc, MSc and PhD in economics, Dr Cook has worked for eight years in the UK higher education sector in various positions involving strategic planning and institutional governance. He is an expert on student retention in tertiary education, examining the economic, ethical and social impacts of increasing longevity and various specific country studies.
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Nicholas Mitchell
Researcher

With a first class degree in Economics and masters in International Politics and Research Methods, Nicholas Mitchell has been working as a political researcher ever since university. While originally based in Munich, he investigated the role this Bavarian city played in the birth of National Socialism and published a guidebook to the Dachau Memorial Site. He is now highly in demand as an independent researcher, with clients in both the US and UK.
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Corrine Sinclair
Legal Fellow

After 8 years in the Civil Service, Corrine returned to full-time education and graduated with a first class LLB honours along with two awards from the University. She subsequently undertook her Legal Practice Diploma in Aberdeen and is currently completing a PhD in Marine Renewables, Policy and Legislation.

Corrine was also awarded a scholarship and worked/studied at Oregon State University in the United States for 3 months where she facilitated contacts for the Oregon State University representatives who were travelling to Orkney to meet with European Marine Energy Centre with the purpose of gaining information to assist in setting up a marine testing bay in Oregon. Ultimately this resulted in talks between two Universities in holding joint Masters Programmes.

Corrine aspires to be part of the implementation and/or development of policy and legislation and is keen to have some influence or involvement in facilitating developments within the Scottish Economy.
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Shazia Akhtar
Legal Fellow

Shazia graduated with an LLB from Glasgow Caledonian University and subsequently undertook her Legal Practice Diploma at the Glasgow Graduate School of Law.

She now works as a Solicitor for Castlemilk Law Centre and Gorbals Law Centre dealing with societyís most vulnerable people in areas such as Consumer Issues, Debt/Money Advice, Mortgage Rights, Employment Right, Human Rights, Discrimination and Criminal Injuries Compensation. However, her main area of work is that of Womenís Rights and she finds nothing more rewarding.

Shazia was a Business Manager for Scotlandís only full time Asian Radio station, Awaz FM where she also presented the extremely popular show 'Drive Time' for over 6 years.
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Jonathan Price
Legal Fellow

Jonathan has studied at the universities of St Andrews, Edinburgh and the Institut Catholique de Paris. Legally trained, he has gained experience working in alternative dispute resolution and mediation, as well as NGOs focussed on development and human rights.

Jonathan works for Inter Mediate, a London based conflict resolution NGO whose aim is to ensure that meaningful dialogue is initiated wherever the appropriate fora for dialogue are non-existent or ineffective.

He has a particular interest in foreign affairs, human rights, and the legislative implications of Scottish independence.
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Martyn Tulloch
Fellow

A chartered engineer and a graduate of The University of Edinburgh, Martyn has built and led successful teams in both the oil & gas and renewable energy sectors. Throughout his career he has combined open and adventurous thinking with hard-nosed commercial and technical prudence. In 2001 he was named Young Consulting Engineer of the Year by the Association of Consulting Engineers, in 2005 he was awarded a Churchill Travel Fellowship and in 2009 he was one of the charter cohort of the Saltire Fellowship, a world leading Scottish entrepreneurial executive development initiative. He is passionate about ensuring that Scotland reaps the full benefits of its hydrocarbon and renewable energy assets, whilst leveraging its intellectual capital to play a leading role on the global stage.
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Dr Christopher Cripps
Development Officer

Dr Cripps (Cambridge) is a senior strategy consultant with over 20 years experience in policy research, academia and think tank consultancy. As a former practicing architect and now urban regeneration consultant, he specialises in the interface between spatial, visual, social and economic issues. The focus is also on the methods for a multi-cultural approach to urban regeneration in the UK. Making working links with academies and practitioners in other global regions is a key part of this. Christopher has worked with governments, local authorities and academia having undertaking hundreds of assignments in Masterplanning, research, policy and regeneration.
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Clyn Gallagher
Director of Operations

Clyn has years of editorial experience in both print and online journalism, and hosted an award-winning radio show that specialised in media analysis and political debate. Her main research interests lie in the relationship between trade unions and political parties, and literature as an amplifier of the Zeitgeist. She wrote her dissertation under the supervision of Professor Stephen Ingle, a noted authority on George Orwell and political literature.
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Ben Van der Velde
Research Fellow

After studying under the tutelage of noted Scottish historian Professor Niall Ferguson, Ben graduated from Jesus College, Oxford with a degree in Modern History. Following this he went on to study Acting at the Central School of Speech and Drama and, since graduating for a second time, Ben has worked as an actor and stand-up comedian. He has performed for the likes of the West Yorkshire Playhouse, Gideon Reeling and Visa, as well as at comedy clubs and festivals all over the country, including Bestival, Komedia and - Britain's best - The Stand in Edinburgh and Glasgow. In addition to his performing, Ben has worked as a private tutor in English, History and Politics and a fundraiser for a variety of major charities. He currently has a Radio 4 version of his debut Edinburgh Festival show in development.
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Simon Smith
Research Fellow

Simon was born in Edinburgh and educated in the United States before returning to Scotland on completion of his undergraduate studies. He has a BA in History and Political Science, an MSc in International Relations and has currently just submitted his PhD in International Relations at Loughborough University. He is an expert on defence and security issues, EU-NATO cooperation, and the transatlantic relationship.