Welcome to IF 2021

1 September 2021

Welcome to the 30th annual Festival from Oxford, presenting a contemporary mix of science and ideas. With a singular global issue dominating headlines, the independence of an Oxford Festival helps anyone navigate an essential range of technology and creativity.

IF Oxford works with over 50 organisations of all shapes and sizes year on year – before, during and beyond the pandemic – and these relationships bring together hundreds of voices and views through digital performances, the printed word and at events in real-life #IRL Oxford-wide venues.

As the world rebalances and recovers from the pandemic, what might become the new normal? Plurality of talent? Respect for challenge? Enjoyment and appreciation of innovation? A care to support others for the greater good? In thirty years, education, the jobs market and industry have seen unthinkable disruption alongside very little change. The Festival and the magazine it co-produced with OX Magazine represent a snapshot of today, with creative groups and companies ready to embrace uncertainty of the future.

With cautious optimism, IF Oxford brings you a playfully serious programme of events and activities, so put your shoes and socks on, or slippers, to try some new Festival commissions: a scientific story updates the 150th anniversary of Alice Through the Looking-Glass with an international twist; hip hop invigorates a museum collection; motion capture fuses youth dance with bird flight; and we invite everyone to light up Oxford by learning surprisingly simple computer code.

Experiment with chemistry and engineering through cooking, probe links between violence and peaceful religion, challenge pandemic politics and multiply maths variety with a great big science and maths gameshow. Oxford’s relevance today is brought to you for free by hundreds of scientists, innovators and creative experts, all made possible thanks to the Festival’s wonderful supporters. I look forward to seeing you at #IFOx2021, because all it needs next is you!

…and if you want to get involved next year, please get in touch.

Dane Comerford,

Festival Director and CEO, IF Oxford:  dane@if-oxford.com