Prof Frank Rennie
BSc, PhD, PGDip FGSE, FRSGS, FAT, PFHEA, FRGS, FRSA, FRAS
Professor of Sustainable Rural Development, Head of Research and Postgraduate Development
Faculty of Science and Technology
d: +44 (0) 1851 770451
Opportunities for new approaches to distance and open education, especially computer-based distributed learning systems, as a contribution to improved development on and in rural communities.
- The impacts of online education and ICT services, especially for rural areas.
- Rural and Community Development Studies
- Human Ecology - The interface between nature conservation and the development of human communities.
Specific research Interests
- Opportunities for new approaches to distance and open education, especially computer-based distributed learning systems, as a contribution to improved development on and in rural communities.
- The animation of grassroots community development, especially mechanisms for participation in integrated rural development initiatives and the practice of participatory action research by rural communities
- Practical systems for securing sustainable development in rural communities.
- Cultural and social issues as a mechanism for development (especially among minority cultures).
- Rural landuse, land ownership, and land management, including small-scale agricultural activities and the crofting system in particular.
- Support and training for leadership development in rural areas.
External interests, member of associations, advisor etc
- Appointed External Examiner at the Institute of Educational Technology, the UK Open University (2018-2021)
- Appointed Principal Fellow of the Higher Education Academy, 2018
- Appointed External Examiner to the Centre for Innovative and Lifelong Learning, University of Mauritius (2014-2018)
- Appointed to the Editorial Panel of the Journal of Perspectives in Applied Academic Practice (JPAAP)http://jpaap.napier.ac.uk/index.php/JPAAP
- Appointed to the Editorial Panel of Folk Life (Journal of Ethnology)
- Appointed Visiting Professor at Kings College London and Member of the International Advisory Board on the Udente Project (online dental education) (2009-2013)
- Appointed External Advisor to the Open University UK for the new Masters Programme in Innovation in e-Learning (2011-13)
- Fellow of the Geological Society of Edinburgh - since 1978
- Fellow of the Arkleton Trust for rural development - since 1987
- Fellow of the Royal Scottish Geographical Society - since 1992
- Fellow of the Academy of Higher Education (and ILT since 2006)
- Fellow of the Royal Geographical Society - since 2003
- Fellow of the Royal Society for the encouragement of Arts, Manufactures and Commerce – since 2017.
- Fellow of the Royal Asiatic Society – since 2021
- Member of the Association for Learning Technology (also UK Research Committee Member 2006-12)
- Member of the International Rural Network (2003) (and Member of the Membership Committee)
- Appointed a Trustee of the Arkleton Trust for innovation in rural development and education. (2005-2013)
- External Examiner at the National University of Ireland (2011-1014)
- External Examiner at the Open University (2007-2008)
- External Examiner at the University of Strathclyde (Dept. of Geography and Sociology) (2004-2010)
- Appointed consultant to the Carnegie UK Trust on their Rural Action Research Programme (2005-9)
- Appointed advisor to the TANZ Polytechnics on the opportunities for the implementation of distributed education in New Zealand.
- External Examiner to Masters Programme at Centre for Human Ecology (OUVS)
- Appointed Adviser to the Scottish Parliament (Rural Development Committee) (2002)
- Appointed to the Scottish Regional Advisory Group for the management of the European Union Northern Periphery Programme for regional development. (1998- 2005)
- Appointed to the Community Economic Development Advisory Group of the Highlands and Islands Partnership Programme. (2000-2004)
- Specialist advisor in the EU funded research project on "Operational features for managing sustainable development in Amazonia (Amazonia21 Project) (1998-2001)
- Appointed to the BBC's Scottish Rural and Agricultural Affairs Advisory Committee. (Scottish Chairman and Member of the UK RAAC 1997-2001)
- Member of the European Rural Observatory of the European Commission to monitor progress and innovation in rural development throughout Europe as part of the LEADER 2, Programme. (1995-2000)
- Appointed to the Secretary of State for Scotland's Working Group on Education for Environmental Sustainability. (ESDG) (1995-2000)
- Accepted as a founder Member of SUPRA (Scottish Universities Policy and Advice Network. (1999)
- Appointed Scottish Co-ordinator of the Nordic-Scottish Universities Network for Rural Development. (1996-1999)
- Member of the Executive Committee of Rural Forum Scotland. (1992-1999) (Director of the Board from 1997)
- Director of the Board of Lewis Crofters Limited (crofters co-operative and suppliers) (1989-2001)
- Appointed Director of SEAD (Scottish Education and Action for Development) (1992-1994).
- Member of the Agricultural Training Board (Scottish Training Committee) (1986-9)
- Co-founder and Steering Group member of Highlands and Islands Forum. (1985-91)
- Founding President of the Scottish Crofters Union (1985-8) (and National Executive Delegate until 1993.)
- Global Challenge project on CHORTENS (Creating Helpful Open Research Tools for Engaging New Staff) linking the UHI with the Royal University of Bhutan (2018-2021).
- Online-offline systems to enhance the quality of Higher Education in Least Developed Countries (Bhutan) funded by the Scottish Funding Council and the UHI (2017)
- e-tips (e-textbook institutional publishing service) (lead partner, with Edinburgh Napier University); funded by JISC (Joint Information Services Committee, for UK Higher Education) (2014-2017)
- Sustaining livelihoods in remote and fragile communities: The role and impact of ferry transport. Funded by Highlands and Islands Enterprise and Calmac (2014-2015)
- Higher Education Academic funded project on Education for Sustainable Development - co-participant (2011)
- NetUniversity: The development of open educational resources and online education with academic partners in Iceland, Sweden, and Labrador, Canada (2008-2010)
- Edushare: Distributed Learning Capacity-Building for Bhutan, Nepal, Cambodia, and the Maldives (EU Asia-Link II Programme, 2007-2010)
- THETA: Tourism, Heritage, and Environment: Technology Applications (Highlands and Islands Enterprise2007)
- EU Grundtvik GOAL project to research systems to support the Generation of Online Adult Learning
- The Development and Management of Sustainable Systems for Distributed Higher Education in Nepal and Bhutan (EU-Asia Link)
- The Connecticon:Learning for the connected generation.
- "How to Use Broadband" for community and business development.
- Critical factors in the success of one-stop-shops as a model of service delivery within rural locations. (Scottish Executive)
- eLearning models desk study (JISC)
- The Use of Computer Networks for Community and Business Development
- Indicators for sustainable rural development at the community level
- "Operational features for managing sustainable development in Amazonia", (The EU funded Amazonia21 Project.)
- Review of international best practice in service delivery to remote and rural areas (contract for the Scottish Executive Rural Affairs Department)
- 2013-Present - Assistant Principal (Research, Enterprise, and Development) at Lews Castle College UHI
- 2011-2014 - Appointed to the UHI Academic Council
- 2010-2014 - Member of the UHI Professorial Forum
- 2009-Present - Appointed UHI Ambassador
- 2007-Present Professor of Sustainable Rural Development
- 2004-2013 Head of Research and Post Graduate Development, Lews Castle College, UHI
- 2000-2004, UHI Development Director at Lews Castle College.
- 2004-2008 Member of UHI PolicyWeb (also on Management Committee and Advisory Committee)
- 1999-2004, Convenor of the Research School of Sustainable Rural Development at the UHI Millennium Institute.
- 1996-9, Head of Rural Development and Communications Department Lews Castle College.
- 1996-2000, Course Director for the University of the Highlands and Islands Project Rural Development, Degree programme (the first network degree of the UHI)
- 1995-Present, Appointed to a full-time lecturing and research post (part-time since 1993) in Rural Development with Lews Castle College
- 1994-7, Commissioned by the University of the Highlands and Islands Project Degree Planning Committee(inter-college) to enable the preparation and delivery of the BSc Degree in Rural Development.
- Academic Council
- Academic Titles Review Board
- Advisory Committee on Enterprise and e-marketing
- Research Ethics Committee
- Research Degrees Committee
- Research Committee
- Information Services Sub Committee
- Subject Network Committee: Sustainable Science, Heritage and Development
- Course Committee BSc Rural development
- Course Committee Heritage & Environmental Interpretation in Tourism
- Course Committee MSc Infection Control
- Course Leaders Forum
- Web Development Committee
- Library Procurement Committee
- International Student Committee
- Sabbatical Review Committee
- Science and Technology Faculty Board
Lews Castle College committees
- Senior Management Team
- Research and Scholarship Committee
- Academic Board
- College Management Committee
- Quality Assurance Committee
- Teaching and Learning Committee
- Research Approvals Committee
- New Courses Committee