We organise a wide range of public events not only to share our passion for physics but also to help people understand our work and see how our research impacts lives. From talks to open-door events and family-friendly fun, there is a world of physics to explore.

Public lectures

Our lectures are designed to suit lots of different audiences from those who study or work in physics-related fields to those who have little or no background knowledge of physics – but who are keen and curious to find out more.

We have several regular fixtures in our calendar of events such as the twice-yearly astrophysics and cosmology Hintze lectures, the family-friendly Christmas lecture and our Institute of Physics lectures. These are supplemented with ad-hoc events or mini-series; we are keen to innovate and try out new formats such as short 15-minute flash talks or themed mini-series on hot topics to reach as wide an audience as possible and show that physics is for everyone.

Many of our talks are recorded – as videos or podcasts – so you will find a wealth of topics covered on the Department of Physics YouTube channel as well as the University of Oxford’s podcast site.

See our public events listing below and find out about what’s coming up by signing up to our mailing list.

Open-door events

Every year, we throw open the doors to the Department of Physics for two very different hands-on, behind-the-scenes events: Stargazing and Lab to Life. These events offer people a unique opportunity to see in our labs, speak to researchers about their work and try out hands-on physics activities.

Stargazing focuses on all things astronomy- and space-related while Lab to Life shares how we take our physics from research in the lab to something tangible and potentially transformative in everyday life. Our researchers are there to explain what they do as well as answer any questions and demo their work.

Citizen science

The Department of Physics is home to two major citizen science projects – projects where you get to do your bit to help advance our understanding of the world. Zooniverse has grown from humble beginnings to a global leader in citizen science and it offers lots of different projects that people can get involved with. Climateprediction.net is the world’s largest climate modelling experiment for the 21st century and it runs climate modelling experiments using the home computers of thousands of volunteers.

Community engagement

We have a particular responsibility to our local community in and around Oxford and we organise events and activities throughout the year to share our work and encourage engagement with STEM. Our efforts are focused on those groups that are under-represented within STEM and this might include science stalls in a local shopping centre, carnival floats or research through the medium of dance…

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