About the Festival
The Cambridge Festival of Ideas is co-ordinated by the Public Engagement team at the University of Cambridge.
The University of Cambridge Festival of Ideas celebrates the arts, humanities and social sciences. The Festival of Ideas is the only free arts, humanities and social sciences festival in the UK, which attracted over 12,000 visitors of all ages to over 190 events in 2011.
The Festival of Ideas began as a pilot public engagement initiative in 2008. An impetus for establishing the Festival was the ongoing popularity of the Cambridge Science Festival with the public, and the valuable communication experience that staff and students have reported that they have gained through engaging with the public. The Festival of Ideas helps to try and readdress the imbalance between public engagement in the sciences and the arts, humanities and social sciences.
The first Festival of Ideas saw approximately 7,000 visitors taking part in over 200 events. The Festival has welcomed many world-renowned speakers to take part over the years including Charlie Higson, Holly Walsh, Professor Marcus du Sautoy, Richard Dawkins, Jacqueline Wilson, Michael Morpurgo, David Starkey and Evan Davis.
View past Festival programmes and evaluations: