Opportunities for Public Engagement
Current outreach opportunities
In2ScienceUK - Calling all researchers!
This year we’re teaming up with the charity In2scienceUK to support young people from disadvantaged backgrounds embarking on careers in science, technology, engineering or maths and improve diversity in the sector.
In2scienceUK is looking for PhD students and researchers to help this year by mentoring up to three young people online and hosting a one-day workplace visit in the summer (Covid-19 restrictions permitting).
How it works:
- Volunteer mentors and Year 12 students sign up to the programme
- Students are shortlisted, interviewed and matched in groups of up to three to a suitable mentor
- Mentors that are matched to a group of students receive training and guidance to deliver their virtual and in-person sessions
- The programme runs throughout August 2021. Mentors meet with their students first through In2scienceUK’s online platform for two 45 minute sessions before hosting a one-day workplace visit (Covid-19 restrictions permitting)
- Students also have access to online research courses, skills and careers workshops and competitions run by In2scienceUK throughout the summer
Volunteering for In2scienceUK you will:
- Make a real difference to the prospects of disadvantaged students through just a small time commitment
- Receive expert training and support from experienced and friendly staff
- Gain skills and experience communicating with young people and online teaching
- Promote diversity and inclusion in STEM by sharing your knowledge and experience with underrepresented students
Sign-up here to mentor up to three students in summer 2021. The deadline to apply is 30 April.
Communicate your science digitally with Oxford Sparks!
It’s more important than ever that we continue to communicate the amazing research going on at the University of Oxford, so please see below for some online opportunities.
Oxford Sparks (a platform for resources and materials which highlight a range of science topics, part of MPLS) hopes to achieve our goal above through the creation and sharing of new, fun digital content. But, as we can no longer hold face-to-face meetings, we need your help! If you are a scientific researcher at the University, and would like to get involved, please complete this form for new digital content - we'd love to hear from you (don’t worry, you don’t need to leave the house)!
If you would like to apply without using Google Forms, or would like more information, please email email@example.com.
IF Oxford 2021
IF Oxford, the science and ideas festival is an opportunity for people to explore innovative ideas and creative research in and around our vibrant city. Combining science, technology, engineering and mathematics with arts, humanities and culture, IF Oxford brings together researchers, authors and creative professionals to share imaginative and thought‑provoking ideas with public audiences.
Closing date: Friday 30 April
Brains in Banbury 2022
The Wellcome Centre for Integrative Neuroimaging (WIN) is on the lookout for anyone from any Division who wants to engage the public with their brain-related research. They are working in partnership with Banbury Museum to put on an exhibition and ambitious associated programme of events in Banbury town venues from 12 February to 27 July 2022. The concept for the exhibition (what makes you, you) is fully developed, but there is room in our framework programme of events for more ideas for public engagement activities about how brain-related research touches our lives.
Closing date: Friday 30 April 2021.
Contact firstname.lastname@example.org for more information.
Falling Walls Engage
Do you run a Science Engagement initiative that engages the public actively with science? Would you like to raise international visibility for your project and be part of a global Science Engagement community? Apply now to get the chance to showcase your work at Falling Walls Engage 2021 in front of an international audience and distinguished expert jury – an event bringing together the brightest minds from science, economy, politics, and the media.
Closing date: Tuesday 15 June 2021.
Ongoing outreach opportunities
Please check individual links for current status of initiatives and events.
Digital outreach ideas and events
- Check out MPLS's tips for Using Social Media to Communicate Your Research.
- The Conversation - The University of Oxford is a member of The Conversation, an online source of thought-provoking articles written by researchers and academics for the public in the UK and globally.
- Oxplore - An innovative digital outreach portal from the University that aims to engage 11-18 year olds with debates and ideas that go beyond what is covered in school.
- Skype a Scientist - matches scientists with classrooms around the world without having to leave the lab!
- I’m a Scientist, get me out of here! Online activity where school students connect with real scientists about real science. It’s a competition between scientists, where students are the judges.
- I'm a Researcher, get me out of here! Online activity where school students connect with academic researchers. It’s a competition between the researchers, where students are the judges.
Within the University
The Forum - a new termly series of events for Oxford's research community to explore and debate Public Engagement with Research practice and policy and provide opportunities for sharing learning and networking.
- The Museum of Natural History - ScienceSaturdays and SuperScienceSaturdays enables families to explore the collections, take part in interactive activities and meet the University's scientists. Get involved with exhibitions and regular events at the museum. Contact Carly Smith-Huggins for more information.
- TORCH - The Oxford Research Centre in the Humanities, offering opportunities for medical humanities interdisciplinary collaborations. Contact Victoria McGuinness for more information.
- Gardens, Libraries and Museums (GLAM) - information about how to engage with GLAM's Public Engagement with Research programme.
External events and activities
- Big Bang Fair - the largest stem science fair for young people in the UK.
- Cheltenham Science Festival - Annual 6-day celebration of science, with discussions, schools shows, hands-on workshops, performances and interactive exhibitions.
- IF Oxford Science + Ideas Festival - Annual event to engage audiences with research in Oxford.
- Soap Box Science - Public outreach platform for promoting female scientists and their work.
- Bright Club - Organises collaborative events between comedians and researchers.
- MRC Festival of Medical Research - annual organised events for MRC-funded units, centres and institutes to showcase and discuss their work throughout the UK
- Royal Society Summer Science Exhibition - week long festival celebrating the cutting edge of UK science.
- Science Cabaret - informal talks in bars, cafes and other public venues.
- Opportunities from the NCCPE - includes Engage Academy, Engage Researchers' Academy and PEP Network.
- Science Swindon - Science Swindon launched a new science festival with support from the Science Museum.
- There is a central University Engagement Opportunities page with information about festivals and programmes that provide opportunities to work with the public.
- See more information on festivals and events available for researchers to engage with the public.