Pedersen, Roy Norman | b 1943 | Economic and social development consultant and author

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Pedersen, Roy Norman | b 1943 | Economic and social development consultant and author

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b 1943


Roy Norman Pedersen was born in Ardrossan, Ayrshire, on 29 November 1943. The family moved to Aberdeen in 1948 where Pedersen graduated from the University of Aberdeen with an MA in Geography and Economic History. He spent a brief spell in London where he worked for the civil service and created and published the first Gaelic map of Scotland. He then moved to Inverness and in 1971 began working for the Highlands and Islands Development Board (HIDB). Early in this career, he was the original architect of the concept of Road Equivalent Tariff (RET), the distance-based ferry charging system. In 1978 Pedersen was appointed as Social Development Officer, assisting with the pioneering Community Co-operative Scheme. The programme offered support and funding for the establishment of community co-operatives and enabled the creation of over a hundred self-sustaining community owned enterprises throughout the Highlands and Islands. In 1987, Pedersen was promoted to Head of Social Development, and continued to work in that post with HIDB successor, Highlands and Islands Enterprise (HIE), until 1993. Between 1994 and 1997 he was seconded as Development Director of Comunn na Gàidhlig, supporting revival of the Gaelic language.
On retirement from HIE in 2001 he founded Pedersen Consulting, specialising in regional economic and cultural development in transport, heritage, Gaelic, community and social enterprise sectors. Pedersen has written and spoken on a variety of issues connected with the history, present and future development of the “New Scotland” and its wider international setting. His published works include non-fiction, such as ' Who pays the ferryman? The great Scottish ferries swindle" (Birlinn, 2013) and "Gaelic guerrilla: John Angus Mackay: Gael extraordinaire" (Luath Press, 2019), fictional murder mysteries, and map translations into Gaelic, Welsh, Old Norse and Scots. Pedersen served as an elected SNP Highland councillor from 2007 to 2012 and chaired several bodies including HI-Arts, Acair publishers, Ainmean-Àite na h-Alba (Gaelic Place-names of Scotland), and the Scottish Government’s Ferry Industry Advisory Group.


Highlands and Islands, Scotland, United Kingdom

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ISAAR(CPF): International Standard Archival Authority Record for Corporate Bodies, Persons and Families, International Council on Archives (2nd edition, 2003); Rules for the construction of personal, place and corporate names, National Council on Archives (1997).


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Created by Kirsty Menzies, 9 June 2021




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