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The full programme is available for this year’s festival, 25 May to 4 June - you can download a PDF of the programme here. We very much look forward to seeing you in May.
Click here to see a list of sold out events
Why We All Have a Duty of Care About Dementia
Event 45 • • Venue: Llwyfan Cymru – Wales Stage
We need a fundamental re-appraisal of how we resource and regulate care for people with dementia. Harding, Professor of Law and Society, exposes the everyday problems generated by the uneven implementation of the legal frameworks and the chronic underfunding of social care. She examines the everyday relationships between family, carers and those for whom they care.
Talking About It
Event 52 • • Venue: Cube
What do we do when the going gets roughest, and what on earth can we say? Rev LT Col Feltham-White is an army chaplain who has dealt with the full psychological cost of war both on the frontline and behind it. Worden is a farmer and campaigner whose father made an attempt on his life after the family farm had to be sold. With wisdom, humour and insight, they talk about when and how to listen.
Fall Down Seven Times, Get Up Eight: A young man’s voice from the silence of autism
Event 73 • • Venue: Baillie Gifford Stage
The novelist launches his translation of the new book by Naoki Higashida. It’s part memoir, part critique of a world that sees disabilities ahead of disabled people, it opens a window into the mind and world of an autistic, non-verbal young adult, providing remarkable insights into autism in general. Chaired by Rosie Goldsmith.
It’s Happened Before
Event 78 • • Venue: Good Energy Stage
Kizilhan is a psychologist who persuaded the state of Baden-Württemberg to spend €95m to rescue back to Germany 1,100 Yazidi women between the ages of 55 and eight, who had been enslaved, repeatedly raped, and tortured by IS in Iraq. He tells the stories of his patients and their desire for truth and justice in the face of genocide.
We recommend reading this article about Jan Kizilhan by Philippe Sands - https://www.ft.com/content/2ce55dee-01c7-11e6-ac98-3c15a1aa2e62
Governing Global Health
Event 113 • • Venue: Starlight Stage
Governments, NGOs and corporations collaborate across the world on campaigns to respond to global health issues such as AIDS, Ebola, SARS and malaria. But how do you regulate these PPPs (private-public partnerships)? The Edinburgh academic and her co-author, Chelsea Clinton, analyse the accountability, effectiveness and sustainability of the biggest campaigns. Chaired by Oscar Guardiola-Rivera.
Cambridge Series: The start of life – how far should science go?
Event 181 • • Venue: Baillie Gifford Stage
Magdalena Zernicka-Goetz is a Professor of Mammalian Development and Stem Cell Biology. Her passion lies in understanding how cells decide their fate for the very first time and how embryos build their architecture. This passion allowed her and her team to reveal the remarkable self-organising properties of human embryos, pioneering the way for future studies of human and mouse embryogenesis. She created a technique that almost doubles the time scientists can culture human embryos in the lab so they can study the beginnings of human life. It raises ethical issues about research on embryos and when an embryo becomes a human.
The Matter of the Heart: A History of the Heart in Eleven Operations
Event 242 • • Venue: Good Energy Stage
For thousands of years the human heart remained the deepest of mysteries; both home to the soul and an organ too complex to touch, let alone operate on. Then, in the late 19th century, medics began going where no one had dared go before. Morris gives us a view over the surgeon’s shoulder, showing us the heart’s inner workings and failings. He describes both a human story and a history of risk-taking that has ultimately saved countless lives. Chaired by Rosie Boycott.
The Royal Society Platform: We Need To Talk About Gene Tech
Event 248 • • Venue: Good Energy Stage
Why does public debate and policy treat the application of genetic technology differently when we are discussing medicine and food? Why is our concept of what is ‘natural’ so controversial and the idea of GM food so alarming? Scientists and sociologists come together with Daniel Davis to discuss what’s being ventured and how it is perceived.
Cambridge Series: The Future of Organ Transplantation
Event 266 • • Venue: Baillie Gifford Stage
The consultant transplant surgeon reviews how organ transplantation is being transformed by innovations in organ donation, stem cell technology, bio-engineered tissues and machine perfusion of organs. He explores what is now possible and discusses the ensuing ethical and legal dilemmas.
Science of the Skeleton
Event 278 • • Venue: Baillie Gifford Stage
Join Oxford scientists in this interactive presentation as they use hands-on experiments and impressive dinosaur and museum specimens to highlight how the sciences of biology, chemistry and engineering combine to create a dynamic and multi-functional skeleton. How are bones formed and broken down? How does our skeleton differ from other animals? James and his team will dispel myths and discuss ongoing skeletal research projects investigating how diet, exercise and ageing affect our bones.
Deviate: The Science of Seeing Differently
Event 296 • • Venue: Good Energy Stage
Perception is the foundation of human experience but few of us understand how our own perception works. By revealing the startling truths about the brain and perception, the world-renowned neuroscientist shows that the next big innovation is not a new technology: it is a new way of seeing.
Redesigning Life: How Genome Editing will Transform the World
Event 349 • • Venue: Starlight Stage
Genome editing has already been used clinically to treat AIDS patients by genetically modifying their white blood cells to be resistant to HIV. In agriculture, genome editing can be used to engineer species with increased food output, resistance to pests, drought and harsh environments. But these powerful new techniques also raise important ethical dilemmas. To what extent should parents be able to manipulate the genetics of their offspring? Can we effectively weigh up the risks from introducing synthetic life forms into complex ecosystems? Parrington is an Associate Professor in Molecular and Cellular Pharmacology at the University of Oxford.
The Wellcome Book Prize Lecture: Autism and Minds Wired For Science
Event 364 • • Venue: Tata Tent
Autism and scientific talent are linked. Scientists have more autistic traits, mathematicians have higher rates of autism and people with autism score higher on ‘systemising’. So is autism a ‘disease’ or ‘disorder’ or is the framework of ‘neurodiversity’ a more humane and accurate lens through which to view autism?
The Wellcome Book Prize lecture aims to celebrate the place of medicine, science and the stories of illness in literature and culture, and how these stories add to our understanding of what it means to be human. Baron-Cohen is a judge of the 2017 prize and Professor of Developmental Psychopathology at the University of Cambridge.
New Perspectives on Beating Cancer Sooner
Event 376 • • Venue: Tata Tent
Thanks to a £35 million investment from Cancer Research UK’s Grand Challenge, Hannon’s and Bunch’s teams of scientists are forming international research collaborations to map tumours at a level of detail that has never previously been imaginable. Using cutting edge biology, chemistry and even astrophysics, they are tackling the challenge from two angles: Bunch is building a ‘Google Maps’ of cancer, whilst Professor Hannon’s use of virtual reality will allow scientists, doctors and patients to walk within tumours. These new perspectives could transform how we understand and treat all types of cancer. Cervantes-Watson is CRUK’s Director of Funding Innovation.