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Highland Homecoming to Explore How One Small Nation Changed the World (24/11/08)
An international conference celebrating the impact and influence of Scots around the globe will be the centrepiece of a programme of events in the Highlands to mark the Year of Homecoming 2009.
‘Scotland's Global Impact’, a three-day conference to be held in Inverness between 22-24 October, will bring together prominent academics, historians and other experts to throw new light on the impact of movement to and from our country.
Ms Fabiani said: “’Scotland’s Global Impact’ looks set to provoke healthy discussion on the history of migration and the influence Scots have had all round the world. This is what Homecoming is all about – a celebration of our rich heritage and culture and the great minds who shaped Scotland and its contribution to the world. There is huge interest in Scottish history, Scots ancestry and what shapes our national identity. Affinity Scots from around the world, and Scots at home, will be attracted to Highland Homecoming. As the inspiration behind the Year of Homecoming, Robert Burns himself, said: ‘My heart’s in the Highlands, wherever I go’.
“The Scottish Government has already committed £60,000 to support a programme of Highland Homecoming events that will appeal to people of all ages who love this country and value Scotland’s great contributions to the world. The Year of Homecoming presents a unique opportunity to boost tourism in the Highlands and across Scotland at a time of global economic uncertainty, and we are determined to make the most of it. “
Professor James Hunter, Director of the UHI Centre for History, said: “Scotland is a tiny country with a population of just five million. But out there in the wider world there are many times that number of people who feel themselves to have a link with, and a stake in, Scotland. These people are one of our great assets. It’s important that we reach out to them, explore the reasons for so much emigration from Scotland in the past, and take the opportunity to underline that here in the Highlands, where the population fell for so long, people are now moving into our area in large numbers.”
Councillor Sandy Park, Convener of The Highland Council, said:
“The Highland Council is delighted to lead the partnership, developing a fantastic programme of events next year which I’m confident will reflect the unique contribution of the Highlands to the Homecoming Scotland celebrations in 2009.”