Public Engagement with Research (PER) is the broad term for when a researcher engages the public using, or as part of, their research. PER can vary depending on the discipline, but broadly it is used to inform and inspire, consult and listen, and/or to collaborate with the public. Humanities researchers regularly involve the public with their research, and, through TORCH, we aim to foster and facilitate PER collaborations and opportunities for Oxford Researchers. By creating and supporting these opportunities, we are able to share and involve a wider range of people in research at Oxford.
This webpage brings together some of the current possibilities to develop public engagement opportunities with research. We support various types of PER with dedicated team members, including:
We welcome enquiries from University of Oxford researchers, and also from external organisations who are interested in engaging with research at Oxford.
Please contact Dr Victoria McGuinness (Head of Cultural Programming and Partnerships).
Regular PER Opportunities for Oxford Researchers
Museums and Heritage
The University of Oxford is home to some of the most varied and high-quality collections in the world – ranging from libraries, archives, art and archaeology, ethnography, history of science and botanic gardens. We have regular opportunities, particularly with the Pitt Rivers Museum, and the Ashmolean Museums as part of their late-night events and our joint web-app platform 'Oxford Stories'. Many heritage-related projects have been developed by the TORCH Heritage Programme, including a flagship partnership with the National Trust.
If you are an Oxford researcher, and you are looking for advice on using archives or museums, nationally or Internationally, please get in touch with the Heritage Partnerships Team.
Literature and Film
We host a number of literature and film-related PER events, including 'In Conversation' panels with authors and filmmakers and our flagship book panel series, Book at Lunchtime.
The Creative Industries, as defined by the Creative Industries federation, include Advertising and marketing; Architecture; Crafts; Design (product, graphic, fashion); Film, TV, video, radio and photography; IT, software and computer services ('creative tech'); Publishing; Museums, galleries and libraries; Music, performing and visual arts; Animation and VFX (visual effects); Video games and Heritage
Festivals are a great way to be an interesting part of a larger and broader collaboration. There are several festivals that TORCH regular supports, including the national Being Human Festival, the IF Festival and the OffBeat Festival.
If you are a theatre-maker or researcher interested in a collaboration, or would like to find out more about working with researchers/ theatres, please contact Ruth Moore, our Theatre Project Officer.
Several of the projects that TORCH supports are involved in have an element of policy, whether through engaging with communities and policymakers, fostering conversations or influencing policy. Further information for researchers looking into policy engagement can be found here.
Health and Wellbeing
TORCH is proud to support several interdisciplinary projects bridging the boundaries between humanities and aspects of healthcare and wellbeing.
See here for further information on other PER support from across the University of Oxford.