Being Human festival: open call deadline extended to 3 July 2020

The chance to apply for funding may have passed but there is still time to get involved with Being Human festival 2020 (12-22 November)! Being Human is the UK’s only national festival of the humanities, led by the School of Advanced Study, University of London in partnership with the Arts and Humanities Research Council and the British Academy.

Through our Open Call we are currently welcoming applications for events and activities that do not require funding from us (e.g. made possible through existing funds or a grant from your institution). To enable as many people as possible to take part we have just extended the deadline for Open Call applications to Friday 3 July.

Participating in the festival is a fantastic way to reach new audiences, form new partnerships and collaborations, champion the importance of research in humanities subjects (including history, languages, classics, art history, literature, philosophy, cultural studies and so on…), and be part of a nationwide celebration exploring this year’s timely festival theme ‘New Worlds’.

Find out more here:

We know that thinking about and planning future events is very challenging at the moment, so we have also just shared a piece on our website with some ideas and practical tips about how to think through planning online and socially-distanced engagement events and activities:

Posted on behalf of Rose de Lara, Communications Officer, Being Human team


Makefest at home

May half term is always the Science and Industry Museum’s big celebration of making, engineering, crafting and creating, culminating with our festival of making, Makefest.

Although the museum is currently closed and Makefest cannot go ahead as normal, we still want to engage our audiences and encourage as many people as possible to get creative at home.

So this year we are bringing Makefest to our social media channels using #Makefestathome and we would love you to get involved. From 25-29 May, we will be sharing photos and videos of things we have made at home and challenging everyone to do the same.

Each day will have a new themed challenge, inspired by Science Museum group learning resources. You can find out more here.

We’d love it if you could join in, make something and share photos and videos of what you’ve made with us on Twitter (@sim_manchester), Instagram (@scienceandindustrymuseum) or on our Facebook event (scienceandindustrymuseum) using the hashtag.

Posted on behalf of Georgina Wells, Contemporary Science Programme Coordinator, Science and Industry Museum

I’m a Scientist, Stay at Home

UK Research and Innovation is excited to be funding I’m a Scientist, Stay at Home! which is running throughout the summer term until 20 July.

The I‘m a Scientist, Stay at Home! project is enabling school pupils to engage with active researchers and staff to provide inspiring STEM lessons for pupils as they are taught at home during the school closures. Pupils engage in online text chats where they can ask scientists questions and find out about their work. Pupils then vote for their favourite researcher at the end. UKRI funding is enabling I’m a Scientist to expand its online platform to reach over 1,200 schools and 140,000 pupils over the summer term.

We’re looking for UKRI-funded researchers and staff to take part. It’s a great way for you to hone your communication skills and inspire the next generation about research. If you would like to find out more and sign up to take part, please visit

Daily Definition Challenge #lockdownquiz

Engage with our #lockdownquiz to identify #wordsforhealth!

The Manchester Academy for Healthcare Science (MAHSE) Patient Forum has launched a #wordsforhealth initiative to identify which healthcare related words the general public find confusing.

We all need to be able to produce scientific or healthcare-related literature that is understood by the public in order to communicate with patients, for educational purposes and as part of funding proposals. This is particularly relevant in our current situation when we are all being bomarded with healthcare related information. Engaging society both in active research and in the development of research and clinical priorities is an essential goal, but do we use accessible language in these situations?

The MAHSE Patient Forum has launched a campaign to help scientists and healthcare professionals identify some of the words the general public find confusing. The Daily Definition Challenge is running under #wordsforhealth on twitter and facebook until 1st June; each challenge should take less than 5 minutes to complete. All responses are anonymous. Please support our campaign by sharing it with your friends, family and patient groups, to reach as many members of the general public as possible.

Further information, including how we will use the results, can be found in our first Daily Definition Challenge here. Follow us on twitter @MAHSE1 and facebook @bmhuom #wordsforhealth #lockdownquiz.

Any questions, contact: or

Maddox Prize: nomination deadline extended to 26 May

Nominations for the John Maddox Prize now extended to 26 May, 11:59am.

The John Maddox Prize for Standing up for Science recognises the work of individuals who promote science and evidence, advancing the public discussion around difficult topics despite challenges or hostility. This is a global prize: people from any country and in any field can be nominated.

The Prize is awarded to an individual for any kind of public activity in any of the areas listed below:

  • Addressing misleading information about a scientific issue (including social science and medicine).
  • Bringing sound evidence to bear in a public or policy debate.
  • Helping people to make sense of a complex scientific issue.

Nominated candidates for the Prize will be judged on the strength of the nomination based on the following criteria:

  • How clearly the individual advanced the discussion of good science, despite challenges.
  • The nature of the challenge(s) faced by the individual.
  • How well they placed the evidence in the wider debate and engaged others.
  • Their level of influence on the public debate.

Winners receive £3000. An additional award is also made to someone who in the opinion of the judges is at an early stage of their career.

Find out more and make a nomination at:

DNA Day – online events 23 – 25 April

DNA Day is a public festival of events celebrating and investigating genetics. Marked around the world, DNA Day is a chance for us all to think carefully about genetics now and in the future.

Following the COVID-19 outbreak, a number of our events have now moved online:

Jurassic Park Watchalong – 23 April, from 6:30pm
Watch Jurassic Park and enjoy the dinosaurs from safely behind your sofa – this ‘Watchalong’ will feature commentary from experts and a live online Q&A featuring Matthew Cobb (@matthewcobb), Will Tattersdill (@WillTattersdill), and Jerome De Groot (@deggy21)

Please begin the film at 6:30 sharp with us and follow the discussion on Twitter using the hashtag #DNADay2020. Licensing issues mean that we cannot stream the film directly. This means you need to source it yourselves but it is easily available from many streaming services.

#decolonizeDNA Twitter Conference – 24 April, from 9am (EST)
More than ever, it is important to understand the deeper societal and political implications of DNA. Who owns access to genetic information? This Twitter conference will investigate these issues and feature contributors from around the world.  For details and schedule see:

DNA and Creativity Online – 25 April, 1-2pm
Join us on Facebook Live for a lively discussion on genetics and poetry:

More information:
Follow us on Twitter: @DNADay1

Why not take part in a Photography or Micro-Poetry competition

Two creative engagement opportunities that you, your friends and family may be interested in taking part in…

International Photography Competition – closes 4 May 2020
Creative Manchester is running its second International Photography Competition in partnership with the Manchester China Institute. This year they are asking entrants to use their phone camera to answer the question: ‘What does family mean to you?’. The competition is open to anyone resident in the UK or China.

For full details visit:

Micro Poetry Competition – closes 21 June 2020
Creative Manchester, in partnership with the Centre for New Writing, is running a climate-themed micro-poetry competition.  The theme is ‘Climate’ – this can relate to any form of climate, environmental, political, the climate inside your house or your body…. you can be as creative as you like. The competition is open to everyone – you do not need to be associated with the University.

To enter the competition all you need to do is tweet your micro-poem through Twitter, including the hashtag #micropoem20.  (Alternatively you can enter by email.)

For full details visit: