10 new University of Glasgow Library fellowships announced

Published: 17 December 2018

The University of Glasgow Library today announced 10 new visiting fellowships awards to support scholars from across the world to come to Glasgow to work on our unique research collections.

University Library front door

The University of Glasgow Library today announced 10 new visiting fellowships awards to support scholars from across the world to come to Glasgow to work on our unique research collections.

The 10 successful scholars come from USA, Canada, Australia, England, Spain and Ireland. The fellowships are supported by the Library in partnership with the Friends of Glasgow University Library and the William Lind Foundation.

They will be working on a diverse range of projects, including studies of 19th century Gàidhlig learning aids, alchemical collections, to early modern English recipes and Glasgow business firms operating in Bombay from 1850-1920.

Internationally important collections

Siobhan Convery, Assistant Director in the Library, said: “We are delighted to be making these research fellowships available. Our collections are of recognised for their international importance and support research across many disciplines, and that is reflected in the research these awards will enable.”

Glasgow is proud to have an outstanding library of old, rare and unique material, including many illuminated medieval and renaissance manuscripts of international importance, and more than 10,000 books printed before 1601.

It also houses extensive collections relating to art, literature and the performing arts, as well as the University’s own institutional archive which dates back to the 13th century. It is also home to the Scottish Business Archive, with over 400 collections dating from the 18th century to the modern day.

Rare opportunity

Two of the successful scholars who have received one of the 10 fellowships are Dr Benjamin Wilkie and Dr Chhaya Goswami.

Dr Wilkie of the University of Otage, New Zealand will be looking at Scottish missionary and commercial activity in 19th century Nyasaland or modern day Malawi, said: “The records of the African Lakes Corporation have only been made available in the University of Glasgow Library’s collections in recent years, and the Visiting Fellowship will provide a rare opportunity to access them.”

Dr Goswami of the University of Mumbai will be looking at the commercial and business links between Bombay and Glasgow between 1850-1920 said: “University of Glasgow Library has a unique archival collection, which offers an incisive perceptivity into the business history of Bombay. Drawing upon the rarely tapped sources, I will be able to reconstruct the narratives of the Indo-Scottish merchants and their commercial ventures. Doing research at the University of Glasgow will also enable me to shape interactive ideas and exchange them with the students and seasoned scholars.”


The Fellowships, worth up to £2000 each, are competitive peer-assessed awards. They are designed to provide financial support towards the costs of travel and accommodation to enable researchers to work on the unique collections held in the University Library.

The successful recipients will spend between two and four weeks over the course of a year working with the collections in Glasgow.

Four of the fellowships are offered by the William Lind Foundation to support research into Scottish business history, otherwise the scope of proposals was open to applicants to define.

Image of a book and library shelves

The Full List of Fellowships

Binghamton University (State University of New York, USA) - Assistant Professor Bridget Whearty, will investigate the decisions making processes on digitalising, partial digitising or not to digitise ancient manuscripts using the example of The Fall of Princes manuscript part of the William Hunter collection.

Independent Scholar - Anke Timmermann is researching a series of four articles on the most significant alchemical collections in UK Libraries. One of the articles will be dedicated to the University of Glasgow’s Ferguson Collection.

Iowa State University – Assistant Professor Michael Christopher Low research will look explore the Mirrlees Waston Company archives to tell the story of how Britain’s Indian Ocean Empire of coal and steam spawned a hydraulic revolution of carbon-intensive water production in the Middle East.

National University of Ireland, Galway Ireland - Dr Ciaran McDonough of NUI Galway will be looking at the publication of 19th century Gàidhlig learning aids and publications, especially those written by antiquarians. Dr McDonough will do a comparative study of materials from Scotland and Ireland from the same period.

Trinity College Dublin, Ireland – Dr Deborah Thorpe is looking at medical humanities to examine pre-modern experience of ageing and age-related health issues looking at around 650 medieval or early modern manuscripts from William Hunter collection

University of Alcalá, Spain - Profesor Isabel de la Cruz-Cabanillas’ research is focused on recipes in medical manuscripts in the collection of William Hunter kept in the University of Glasgow Library.

University of Mumbai, India - Dr Chhaya Goswami’s research will be looking at trans-oceanic collabations betwee Glasgow business firms and the city of Bombay (modern day Mumbai) between 1850 and 1920.

University of Notre Dame(USA) in England - Dr Adrian Chapman will look a radical psychiatrist RD Laing through the Special Collections sound and video recordings.

University of Otago in New Zealand - Dr Benjamin Wilkie will consider part of the long history of Scotland’s relationship to central Africa. In particular, he is going to explore Scottish missionary and commercial activity in late-nineteenth century Nyasaland, or modern-day Malawi.

University of Westminister – Dr Helen Glew will be looking at the cultural and social history of married women’s paid work in Britain from 1870 to present day. Dr Glew will look at the Scottish context of this study.


For more information please contact Aine Allardyce in the University of Glasgow Communications and Public Affairs Office on 0141 330 7126 or email aine.allardyce@glasgow.ac.uk

First published: 17 December 2018