Prof Donna Heddle

Institute for Northern Studies
University of the Highlands and Islands
Kiln Corner
KW15 1QX

Donna Heddle
tel: +44 (0)1856 569247
mob: +44 (0)1856 569001

Available to talk to the media about

  • Orkney and Shetland issues
  • Scottish literature and language
  • Cultural history and policy
  • Cultural tourism
  • Technology and education
  • Vikings

In the following languages

English, French


Prof Donna Heddle is Director of the interdisciplinary Institute for Northern Studies at UHI based in Kirkwall, Orkney and Scalloway, Shetland.  She has also developed postgraduate programmes in Highlands and Islands Literature and Culture, Orkney and Shetland Studies, and Viking Studies. With a particular passion for locative research – looking at communities from within and how they interact – her research interests also include: Scottish and Northern Isles cultural history; small island studies; language and literature and Old Norse. She is also the author of a number of publications in these areas and is currently leading several national and international research and cultural tourism projects involving the North Atlantic rim. Prof Heddle is also chairwoman of the Modern Languages Association (MLA) International Scottish Studies Committee and has been involved in a number of Northern Periphery Programme (NPP) cultural projects involving technology and education. She has chaired six conferences, including the HIE/ Creative Scotland Old Maps and New - Where Culture and Social Enterprise Meet conference in November 2010, and is a popular keynote and invited speaker, and has 30 conference papers to her credit.

Current research

  • HvalRad (Whale Road), an international marine heritage and tourism project
  • Ferry DVD Project - ferries as cultural spaces, working with Orkney Ferries and Northlink
  • Hjaltland Research Network   - funded by Royal Society of Edinburgh to look at Viking diaspora
  • The Centre for Nordic Studies is also a partner in The Assembly Project (TAP) on assembly sites with international partners

Research groups/interest

  • Northern Scholars Network
  • Scottish Society for Northern Studies
  • Hjaltland network in Viking diaspora
  • Small island studies
  • Language and literature
  • Old Norse

Selected publications

  • Northern Heritage, UHI Press, Inverness, 2006  ISBN 1-905675-02-X
  • 6th International DIVERSE conference proceedings, Multimedia blended network learning: A Culture Studies case study, Glasgow Caledonian University 2006 ISBN 1-905866-05-4
  • “Clouston - the Writer of Fiction”, chapter in J. Storer Clouston, The Spy in Black, ed. M. MacDonald, AOP, 2007 ISBN  0955366712
  • "The Language of the Gutters?”, Travels and Travails of the Herring Girls, UHI Press, Inverness, 2007 ISBN  1-905675-03-8
  • “John Stewart of Baldynneis” Roland Furious; A Scots Poem in its European Context, BRILL Intellectual History Series, 2007. ISBN 9004163182
  • “The sociocultural effects of aviation in the Northern Isles”, chapter, Compendium of Scottish Ethnology, vol. 8, Birlinn Books, 2009 ISBN 1904607888
  • “The Norse element in the Orkney dialect” in Millar, Robert McColl (ed.) 2010. Northern Lights, Northern Words. Selected Papers from the FRLSU Conference, Kirkwall 2009, ISBN 978-0-9566549-1-5
  • 6 articles on Lyndsay, Ferrier, Kennedy, Montgomerie etc for the online  Literary Encyclopedia

Reviews include

Scottish Studies Review Autumn 2005, Review of Benjamin Cook and Peter Todd (eds), Subjects and Sequences: Margaret Tait Reader (London: Lux, 2004).

Scottish Historical Review, Volume 89 (1): 98, Edinburgh University Press, Apr 2010

St. Magnús of Orkney: A Scandinavian Martyr-cult in Context. By Haki Antonsson. Pp. viii, 272. ISBN: 9789004155800. Leiden: Brill Academic Press, 2007.

The Early English Settlement of Orkney and Shetland.By Graeme Davis. Pp. xi, 132. ISBN: 9781904607755. Edinburgh: John Donald, 2007.

Blaeu's Orkneys and Schetland: The Orkneys and Schetland in Blaeu's Atlas of 1654. Edited by James M. Irvine. Pp. 64. ISBN: 9780954457129. Ashtead: James M. Irvine, 2006.