Dr Alasdair Allan was appointed Minister for International Development and Europe in May 2016.
Specific responsibilities are:
- European Union and international relations (cross-government co-ordination)
- international development
- Scottish diaspora
He was born in Ashkirk in the Scottish Borders in 1971 and attended Glasgow and Aberdeen Universities, gaining a PhD in Scots Language in 1998.
Prior to becoming an MSP Alasdair was senior media relations officer for the Church of Scotland. He was named Gaelic journalist of the year in 2006. He was also the National Secretary of the SNP from 2003 to 2006. Alasdair was elected MSP for the Western Isles in the 2007 election. He served on the Local Government and Communities Committee, the Education, Lifelong Learning and Culture Committee and the Transport, Infrastructure and Climate Change Committee, before becoming Minister for Learning, Science and Scotland's Languages in 2011.
When not working, he sings with the Back District Gaelic Choir in Lewis, with whom he has competed in the National Mod. He is learning Norwegian in his spare time.