Discover how social scientists are shaping society today through free events

30 Oct 2015 11:32:50.980
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The University of Nottingham is hosting four free public events about its research as part of the Economic and Social Research Council’s 13th annual Festival of Social Science.

The Economic and Social Research Council (ESRC) funded festival, which is taking place between the 7th and 14th November, offers an insight into some of the country’s leading social science research and how it influences our social, economic and political lives – both now and in the future.

The festival is open to all ages from schoolchildren to politicians, who can take part and hear about social science in a number of different ways.
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The events will showcase how Social Science research shapes public policy and contributes to making the economy more competitive, as well as giving people a better understanding of the 21st Century.

Free events in Nottingham

Professor Todd Landman, Pro-Vice Chancellor for the Faculty of Social Sciences at The University of Nottingham, said: “We’re excited to be part of the ESRC Festival and to show how our dynamic and highly diverse work in the social sciences across The University of Nottingham addresses important issues for our society today such as children’s digital rights, issues of water sustainability, the societal implications of new technologies such as synthetic biology, and how the community can be involved in shaping education.”

During the festival, the University will be hosting four separate events across Nottingham:

iRights Youth Juries: promoting digital rights
November 7 2015, the Galleries of Justice
This event, addresses growing concerns about the consequences of social media, cyberbullying, data privacy and online behaviour on users, especially children and young adults.
Register here.

Last Call at the Oasis screening/discussion
November 9 2015, Highfield House, University of Nottingham
In countries like the UK we take it for granted that we can turn on a tap to get fresh and clean drinking water. This event, in collaboration with the Papplewick Pumping Station Trust, features a showing of the powerful documentary ‘Last call at the Oasis’, which brings into focus water sustainability issues.
Register here.

Synthetic biology: great expectations and great responsibilities
November 9 2015, Lakeside Arts Centre, University of Nottingham
Both synthetic biology as an emerging bioscience and ‘Responsible Research and Innovation’ as a new approach to science governance are controversial. Bringing them together is even more controversial. Can it be done? This event will bring together natural scientists and a member of a non-governmental organisation. The panel will be chaired by scientist and broadcaster Adam Rutherford.
Register here.

Nottingham-Shire: a voice for education.
November 14 2015, Highfield House, University of Nottingham
Education services, from pre-school to adulthood are important to all of our lives - as students, parents, educators, workers or members of the community. In this one-day workshop, people will be invited to think differently about education. If you believe education can change lives, and you want to change education in Nottingham and Nottinghamshire, then this event is for you.
Register here.

200 free events across the UK

The 13th annual Festival of Social Sciences will have 200 free events nationwide. A full programme of events can be found at

The ESRC is the UK’s largest funder of research on the social and economic questions facing us today. It supports the development and training of the UK’s future social scientists and also funds major studies that provide the infrastructure for research.

ESRC-funded research informs policymakers and practitioners and helps make businesses, voluntary bodies and other organisations more effective. The ESRC also works collaboratively with six other UK research councils and Innovate UK to fund cross-disciplinary research and innovation addressing major societal challenges. The ESRC is an independent organisation, established by Royal Charter in 1965, and funded mainly by the Government. In 2015 it celebrates its 50th anniversary.

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Our academics can now be interviewed for broadcast via our Media Hub, which offers a Globelynx fixed camera and ISDN line facilities at University Park campus. For further information please contact a member of the Communications team on +44 (0)115 951 5798, email or see the Globelynx website for how to register for this service.

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Notes to editors: The University of Nottingham has 43,000 students and is ‘the nearest Britain has to a truly global university, with a “distinct” approach to internationalisation, which rests on those full-scale campuses in China and Malaysia, as well as a large presence in its home city.’ (Times Good University Guide 2016). It is also one of the most popular universities in the UK among graduate employers and the winner of ‘Research Project of the Year’ at the Times Higher Education Awards 2014. It is ranked in the world’s top 75 by the QS World University Rankings 2015/16, and 8th in the UK by research power according to the Research Excellence Framework 2014. It has been voted the world’s greenest campus for three years running, according to Greenmetrics Ranking of World Universities.

Impact: The Nottingham Campaign, its biggest-ever fundraising campaign, is delivering the University’s vision to change lives, tackle global issues and shape the future. More news…


Story credits

More information is available from Paula Gurteen, Research Development Manager, Social Sciences at The University of Nottingham on +44 (0)115 95 13074,

Charlotte Anscombe – Media Relations Manager (Arts and Social Sciences)

Email:  Phone:+44 (0)115 74 84 417 Location: University Park

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