Launching SGSAH’s Scottish Universities Research Collections Associate Scheme 2016 Pilot

What is SURCAS?

Scotland’s universities have a rich & diverse resource of special research collections.  Museums, rare books & archives: collections recognised as being of national importance & world significance.  

SURCAS is a new scheme which supports doctoral researchers in the arts & humanities to undertake short-term research/knowledge exchange projects with collections & to produce a public engagement outcome.  This can take the form of an online exhibition; talks; short films; apps; performances; creative practice; or whatever the researcher agrees with the collections service.  In this pilot year, we are focusing on archives & special collections.

First Pilot Projects Funded

We are pleased to announce that three projects were successful in our first SURCAS competition.  SURCAS aims to connect doctoral researchers in the arts & humanities with special collections, musuems and archives within Scottish higher education institutions.  Our HEIs have rich resources, many of which are Nationally Recognised, and this new pilot seeks to open up these resources to other researchers and to the wider public.  In this pilot round we are funding doctoral researchers to explore the overlooked music found in margins and illuminations of pre-16th century manuscripts; the archives of the oldest purpose-built public library in Scotland; and the suffrage resources of several Scottish HEIs.  

We will use this page to link to the online resources produced by the SURCAS award holders.   We are now reviewing the pilot in consultation with our partners SUSCAG and hope to open a new competition in 2017. 

Links to HEI Archives

Use the links below to explore the archives & special collections in Scotland’s HEIs.  

Robert Gordon University
Contact for Collections –
Contact for Archives –

Royal Conservatoire of Scotland
Access to the Royal Conservatoire of Scotland’s Archives & Collections is by appointment only. To arrange a visit please contact the Archives Officer, Stuart A. Harris-Logan, at 0141 270 8299 or

University of the Highlands & Islands

Please contact the Library Co-ordinators Donald MacLean or  Ruth Priest