Scotland 1900-2021

Over the past couple of years, storytelling has gained prominence as a tool to aid our wellbeing, to explore equity, and to combat harmful media. With the Open University’s ‘Women and Workplace Struggles: Scotland 1900-2021’ project, we are reminded of a key function of storytelling – to record.

The Open University is working with trade unions across Scotland to record stories spanning sectors, distance, and time, about women’s involvement in workplace struggles, strikes, and disputes. The aim is to launch an open educational resource this spring, for future generations of trade unionists, activists, researchers and historians, as well as the wider public in Scotland.

Professor Gerry Mooney, one of the project leads, is keen to hear our voices:

“The Educational Institute of Scotland is a key educational body that we would be delighted to have contributing to this project. EIS members span the Scottish education spectrum and contributions from members involved at each level or stage of education in Scotland, pre-school to university, are warmly invited to join us in generating learning materials that will be available for future generations of trade union members and learners from across Scotland.”

Recording Your Story

  • Take inspiration from the women trade unionists who have already contributed a piece at the project webpage: Contributors include EIS-FELA member, Penny Gower.
  • Consider the story you want to tell. It may be about your involvement in action, or it may be a researched, historical piece on women’s trade union activity. You may wish to tell your own story of activism, or work with other women to tell a collective one.
  • Read the guide on the EIS website that will help ready your ideas for publishing on the project page or contact Pauline at to discuss your initial ideas.

Whatever the workplace struggles, the EIS wants our women members to tell their stories and the OU is keen to gather all the stories that they can. Help to build this important archive of women’s trade union history. Join in and be a part of it.