Programme 2019

Thinking Futures shares and celebrates the research undertaken in the University of Bristol’s Faculty of Social Sciences and Law.

The programme comprises a wide variety of events - from debates and discussions to workshop and exhibitions - all for the general public, schools, policy-makers and third sector organisations.

The 2019 programme

The Ethics, Politics and Practices of ‘Alternative’ Forms of Organisation

When? Friday 1st November, 18:00-20:30

Where? Robinswood Hill, Gloucester

What? Dr Alice Willatt's research draws on participatory approaches to co-generate knowledge on the ethics, politics and practices of ‘alternative’ forms of organisation focused on social and ecological justice.  Taking a woodland walk with a community group funded by Gloucester Gloucestershire Gateway Trust (partners of the award-winning Gloucester Services on the M5), this event will explore how businesses can enrich their local communities.  

Contact for more information about this event.


Fernan Hernandez

When? Saturday 2nd November, 11:00-13:00

Where? University of Bristol 

What? Dr Fernan Hernandez, a researcher at the University of Bristol, will bring together young people and youth workers from Bristol based Integrate UK and Bristol Youth Horn Concern to combine their expertise and help raise awareness of violent extremism. 

Contact for more information about this event.


Social Justice for Health Technologies

When? Wednesday 6th November, 11:00-13:00

Where? Hartcliffe, Bristol

What? Dr Sophie Turnbull is interested in the relationship between social justice and the development of health technologies. Working with the community of Hartcliffe in South Bristol, this event will explore how questions of justice and equality impact on the way we imagine, design and use technology to live healthier lives.  

Contact for more information about this event.


What Have Directly Elected Mayors Ever Done For Us? 

When? Wednesday 6th November, 18:00-19:30
Where? The Foundation, St George, Bristol, BS1 5BE
What? There are 25 directly elected mayors in the UK, with the prospect of more to come. Bristol now has two directly elected mayors, one who heads Bristol City Council, and another who leads the West of England combined authority. Drawing on research conducted locally, nationally, and internationally, this interactive event aims to advance understanding of the impact of the introduction of directly elected mayors on English local government. It includes the following speakers:
  • Arianna Giovannini, Institute for Public Policy Research North and De Montfort University
  • Baroness Barbara Janke, Member of the House of Lords and former Leader, Bristol City Council
  • Alessandro Sancino, The Open University, and former local and national politician in Italy
  • David Sweeting, University of Bristol
  • Chair: Thom Oliver, University of the West of England, Bristol 
Register for your Eventbrite ticket here.
Food Poverty & Community
When? Thursday 7th November, 12:00-14:00
Where? Bristol 
What? This event is all about celebrating food. From its preparation, sharing and eating to its role in society and the power it has to bring together communities.  Researchers from the University of Bristol will work alongside 91 Ways, an organisation whose events use the uniting power of food to bridge the gaps between Bristol’s 91 language communities, helping to build a more united and sustainable global city. We know that the choices we make about how we eat have a direct impact on our quality of life and our environment.  This event will invite people to share their stories, personal food journeys, recipes and passions in order to build understanding between communities. We'll explore these issues whilst bringing people together to cook and eat!
Contact for more information about this event.
RSA Bristol: The Future of Work
When? Thursday 7th November November, 18:30-20:00
Where? Engine Shed, Station Approach, Bristol, BS1 6QH
What? This event is a partnership between RSA SW and Engine Shed. It is part of the Economic and Social Research Council's national Festival of Social Sciences, Thinking Futures Festival 2019 and the Bristol Tech Festival. There will be a series of fast-paced talks from a range of speakers on what the future of work looks like to them, with particular focus on the RSA’s Four Futures of Work areas.  There will be a panel discussion with Q&A, before an opportunity to network.
Register for your Eventbrite ticket here.
Imagining our Technological Future
When? Saturday 9th November, 11:00-15:00
Where? Bristol Tech Fair, Colston Hall, Bristol, BS1 5AR
What? Professor of Sociology, Susan Halford, is visiting Bristol Tech Fair to present a creative workshop bringing together kids and their families to think about our shared futures with technology. Susan’s work puts humans at the centre of technological development, engaging society in co-imagining technological futures.  
Register for your Eventbrite ticket here.
Past programmes
Programmes from previous Thinking Futures festivals:
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