A makar is a term now used in Scottish literature for a poet or bard, sometimes applied to a region or language - Stirling Makar, Scots Makar, Dundee Makar.
The word highlights the role of the poet as someone skilled in the crafting of poetry and is normally applied to poets writing in Scots although it need not be exclusive to Scottish writers. I think the makar is expected to be an ambassador of sorts, but the hope is that as with Liz Lochhead, Jackie Kay will also work wonders with children, and help introduce them to poetry.
As far as the term makar goes, William Dunbar even referred to the English poets Chaucer, Lydgate and Gower as makars.
And recently we found out that a few people didn't know what a makar was ... but more curiously, there were others who did know what it referred to ... but thought makar might not be an appropriate title for this job, and that National Poet may be more fitting.
The Courier (15.03.16) reported: "Robyn Marsack, the outgoing director of the Scottish Poetry Library in Edinburgh, explained that the first Makar Edwin Morgan was uncomfortable with the title."