Edinburgh UNESCO City of Literature Trust Staff

Alison Bowden is Director of Edinburgh UNESCO City of Literature Trust and works locally and internationally to promote and develop Edinburgh as a literary city. She has 10 years’ experience in book publishing in Scotland, in various roles, working as a Commissioning Editor at Polygon and publishing Alexander McCall Smith’s The No.1 Ladies’ Detective Agency, and later as Rights Manager at Edinburgh University Press.

In addition to publishing, she has many years of experience in the Scottish arts and culture environment, working on committees, as a speaker, chairing events and as an advisor. She has worked in journalism for both radio and print, and spent five years working within the music sector as a live music promoter and event organiser.

She was a judge for the Saltire Society Literary Awards, is Co-Vice Chair for Literature Alliance Scotland and was awarded an Honorary Doctorate of Letters from Edinburgh Napier University for her contribution to Scotland’s literary and cultural reputation.

The City of Literature Trust office is supported by freelancers and volunteers and by the Trust's board members.

Keira Brown, having worked in the book trade in various capacities at organisations such as The Bookseller, Blackwells, Nielsen, Booktrust, Paisley Book Festival and the Royal Society of Literature for over 15 years, has a long-standing and committed history to the literature sector.

Recently, she worked for two years as co-producer on Paisley Book Festival with a transition to digital in the second year before moving to working in posts at the Royal Society of Literature and Publishing Scotland, assisting with their communications and events.

She has an in-depth knowledge of arts and culture in Scotland from her time writing for a variety of publications including SNACK and The List as well as previously being a Trustee on the board for Scottish PEN. She has been in her post with Edinburgh City of Literature Trust as their Communications Executive since April 2023.