Events returning throughout October 2020

Event and Activity Proposals:
IF Oxford 2020 exhibitor information




IF Oxford is a science and ideas festival that explores innovative ideas and creative research in and around Oxford. The Festival will cover the whole month of October 2020 with dozens of activities and events and physical distancing and COVID safety at the heart of programming; the virtual Explorzone on Saturday 17 October will use the vFairs platform.


Festivals, through their varied mix of activities, enable a diversity of people to participate in research conversations, establishing relevance and building trust around complex topics.


Call for proposals deadline has been extended to Monday 1 June 2020
Festival dates: Friday 16–Monday 26 October 2020


IF Oxford is run by a small charity (Charity no. 1151361) that organises, delivers and evaluates the Festival. Participation fees contribute to collective marketing and events costs.


We are keen to work with academics, researchers, businesses, charities and community groups to build an exciting, innovative, high quality programme of events.


We are monitoring COVID-19 and the Festival expects to use a range of venues, formats and platforms to host public events so people can explore unfamiliar ideas in environments familiar to them.


Talks, hands-on activities, performances, and more in multi‑activity zones or as individual events; the Festival can support planning at any stage, from a concept to completion.


Submit your proposal About IF Oxford

Key dates to prepare for IF 2020
1 June Extended deadline for event proposals
30 June Deadline for programme copy
August Programme online and 60,000 brochures and leaflets distributed
September Bookings for events open to the public
16 – 26 October IF 2020
Topical themes

We welcome all great ideas on subjects that can resonate with public audiences, from our changing climate and environment, to quantum physics or the impacts of social media on society, and much, much more…

You may like to consider that October raises awareness of Black History Month, Breast Cancer Awareness Month, ADHD Awareness Month and Earth Sciences Week.

The year 2020, evokes 20/20 vision, and marks anniversaries, eg: births of Roger Bacon (~800th) and John Graunt (400th), discovery of electromagnetism (200th) and X-rays (125th), birth of Rosalind Franklin (100th) and the death of George Orwell (70th). You may also want to highlight an aspect of COVID-19.

Submit your proposal

Costs involved

Hands-on exhibits in one of our multi-activity Festival Zones, or a stand-alone event in the IF2020 programme costs £500 per exhibit / event per day.

For your participation fee, you will receive:

  • Festival coordination, venue booking (if required) and logistical support;
  • Training and activity development advice for your event team;
  • Specific promotion of your activity in the Festival brochure and website;
  • Broad promotion of the Festival with roadside banners, posters, press and social media;
  • Regional marketing with 60,000 Festival guides and leaflets;
  • Please remember, you know your existing audiences best, so please also promote your own events through your own or institutional networks and social media;
  • Audience booking and visitor management;
  • Event venue and support with Festival volunteer stewards;
  • Festival T-shirts for your staff / volunteers; and
  • evaluation and independent reporting services.
Some FAQs

Please see the IF Oxford (April) statement on COVID-19 planning

Don’t have a budget for the £500 fee? In exceptional circumstances, resources may be available for a hardship fund to help cover costs. Please contact the Festival team if this applies to you.

Most events will be free for the public to attend, with donations encouraged through a Pay What You Decide ticketing model.

See the outputs and impacts from IF 2018 and 2019 with past programmes and infographic reports.

Please check the full list of Frequently Asked Questions or contact the Festival team for help:

Dane Comerford, Festival Director  [email protected] or 01865 810 027

Cathy Rose, Festival Manager [email protected] or 01865 810 016

Submit your proposal


Do you require something different, or more support? Sponsorship comes with a bespoke package for your organisation, which could include supporting a specific event or series, a Festival film or something more substantial. The Festival team will explore your ideas with you by request.

COVID-19 update:

We share solidarity with teams across the world affected by COVID-19. We will find new ways to continue making our October Festival meaningful and relevant to people who value dialogue and social interaction.

Please see the IF Oxford (April) statement on COVID-19 planning

If you’re interested in being involved but not sure how your area of research might fit into the Festival, how to run an event during physical distancing rules or just want to find out more, please sign up to our videoconference update: Tuesday 19 May 2020, 2-3.30pm

Coming in October 2020

Events for everyone, covering all levels of interest…

…and much more!

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