Open for Discussion

A conversation series led by the School of Advanced Study that applies humanities perspectives to critical social issues

‘Open for Discussion’ is an annual series of conversations convened by experts at the School of Advanced Study at the University of London that bring multidisciplinary humanities perspectives to bear on critical social issues -- issues with human dimensions frequently overlooked in current policy debates.

Each conversation features thought-leaders and humanities researchers in wide-ranging discussions that present questions of policy, practice, and opportunity. In the tradition of the School’s approach to humanities research, the series experiments with new ideas and formats. Each conversation generates a range of provocations, interventions, and/or policy papers to spur further discussion.

2020-21 Series: What the COVID-19 Pandemic Has Revealed about Us

The focus of this year’s series are those things that the COVID-19 pandemic has made visible, or rather what it has forced us to see more clearly: Black Lives Matter, digital poverty, privacy rights, the importance of communication, the value of the arts and heritage sectors, and the types of knowledge needed to confront global challenges.



‘On the Outside Looking In: Do We Need a SAGE for the Humanities?’

14 December 2020, 6:00-7:30 pm, via Zoom
Free and open to the public
Registration required: https://sas.ac.uk/events/event/23289

Convened by Professor Barry Smith, Director of the Institute of Philosophy, School of Advanced Study, University of London. Participants to be announced.

Confirmed speakers: Professor Jo Wolff (Oxford), Professor Philippe Sands (UCL), Professor Lyndsey Stonebridge (Birmingham), Ms Subhadra Das (UCL), Professor Jeremy Farrar (member of SAGE, Wellcome Trust)



'Digital Access, Inclusion, and the Humanities' 

23 February 2021, 6-7 pm via Zoom
Free and open to the public
Registration required: https://sas.ac.uk/events/event/23475

Convened by Dr Naomi Wells, Early Career Researcher in Italian and Spanish, Institute of Modern Languages Research, School of Advanced Study, University of London, and Professor Jane Winters, Professor of Digital Humanities, School of Advanced Study, University of London. Participants to be announced.
 



'Unlocking Collections' 

Thursday, 18 March 2021, via Zoom
Free and open to the public
Registration required: https://sas.ac.uk/events/event/23447 

Convened by Professor Clare Lees, Director of the Institute of English Studies, School of Advanced Study, University of London, and Professor Bill Sherman, Director of the Warburg Institute, School of Advanced Study, University of London. Confirmed speakers include Rebecca Bailey, Head of Exhibitions and Outreach for Historic Environment Scotland and Programme Director for 'Towards a National Collection'; Catherine Ince, Chief Curator, V&A East; Adam Lowe, Founder, Factum Foundation; Catriona Cannon, Deputy Librarian and Keeper of Collections, Bodleian Libraries; University of Oxford; and Maria Fusco, Professor of Fine Art, University of Dundee.
 



'Transnational Perspectives on Building a Post-Covid Society' 

Thursday, 22 April 2021, via Zoom

Tuesday, 27 April 2021, via Zoom

Free and open to the public
Registration required

Convenors: Charles Burdett, Director of the Institute of Modern Languages Research, School of Advanced Study, and Godela Weiss-Sussex, Reader in Modern German Literature

Participants in the panel discussion on 22 April include Professor Astrid Erll, Goethe-University Frankfurt; Professor Charles Forsdick, University of Liverpool; Dr Steven Wilson, Queen's University Belfast; and Ignacio Peyró, Director of the Cervantes Institute, London.

Participants in the roundtable discussion on 27 April include Professor Li Wei, University College London; Dr Joseph Ford, Institute of Modern Languages Research, School of Advanced Study, University of London; Emma Whitby, Chief Executive, Healthwatch Islington; Professor Yaron Matras, University of Manchester; Claudia Lopez-Prieto, Citizens UK and Lambeth Council; Lucía Vinzón, Coalition of Latin Americans in the UK; and Soledad Montañez, Institute of Modern Languages Research, School of Advanced Study, University of London. 

 



'Open Cities'

May 2021, via Zoom
Free and open to the public
Registration required

Convened by Professor Sarah Churchwell, Chair of Public Understanding of the Humanities, School of Advanced Study. Participants to be announced.



Series Conclusion: ‘Opening the Door to a More Engaged Humanities’

June 2021, via Zoom
Free and open to the public
Registration required