This page describes all of University and national events and initiatives that are available to staff and students. These events are often co-ordinated by colleagues at the University and are a great way to start engaging with audiences, or try something new. For the latest opportunities check our latest Public Engagement Newsletter.

Information on who to contact, or where to find out more information is below.

Events organised and/or supported by the University

Month   Activity       Details
March Dundee Women's Festival What? In 2021 the theme for Dundee Women’s Festival is ‘The Power of Women’ – an appropriate title in what will be the centenary year of International Women’s Day. The Festival organisers accept that next year’s Festival will very possibly look different – it could well be shorter in length; it may take place partially or fully online – but by The Power of Women – they are determined that it will take place!

When? 5-14 March 2021.

For more information: Please contact Dundee Women's Festival by 30 September 2020 to note your interest.

Mar - Jun Three Minute Thesis What? Three Minute Thesis challenges students studying for a PhD to present a compelling spoken presentation on their research topic and its significance in just three minutes. 

®3MT is an academic competition developed by the University of Queensland, Australia. Its success has led to the establishment of local and national competitions in several countries.

When? Applications open in March/April every year. The University final is held in May/June.

For more information: please contact the Doctoral Academy.

August Cabaret of Dangerous Ideas

What? The Cabaret of Dangerous Ideas provides an informal but high-profile platform for researchers to discuss their work with members of the public at the Edinburgh Festival. Shows are designed to be as interactive and human as possible.

Deadline to submit your event: November of the preceding year.

For more information: Please contact the organisers - The Edinburgh Beltane Network.

Sep - May Cafe Science Dundee What? Relaxed and informal discussions about science with the public over coffee. Free, open to all.

When? Visit our Cafe Science Dundee website to find details on our next event.

For more information: Please contact the Cafe Science Dundee team.

Sep - Jun Dundee Arts Cafe What? Relaxed and informal discussions from or staff and students about the arts, education, social sciences and humanities with the public over coffee at the central location of The McManus Dundee's Art Gallery and Museum. These public events are free and ticketed. Please book in advance.

When? Visit our Dundee Arts Cafe website to find details on our next event.

For more information: Please contact the Dundee Arts Cafe team.

October Festival of the Future

What? Five days of cultural events, student-led activities and community focussed activity led by the University of Dundee. The festival showcases the city and the University, celebrating our successes from research, teaching and our partnerships.

When? Returning in 2021

For more information: Please contact Emma Beatt, who programmes the Festival.

October Black History Month

What? Black History Month takes place throughout October each year and this year the University and Dundee University Students' Association (DUSA) have come together to provide a programme of events aimed to educate and reflect on the contributions, achievements and experiences of our staff and students from black and minority ethnic (BME) backgrounds. We hope this will provide opportunities to promote dialogue around equality, diversity and inclusion.

When? October 2020

For more information: Please contact the Public Engagement team.

October or November Dundee Science Festival

What? Exciting events including family fun days, theatre, comedy, talks and activities in local schools.

When? In 2020, three weekends in November. 14-15 Nov, 21-22 Nov, 28-29 Nov 2020.

For more information: Please contact the Public Engagement team.

November Being Human Festival What? A series of events celebrating languages and cultures across Scotland as part of the UK’s annual Being Human Festival of the Humanities. With a series of hands-on activities and immersive events, the University of Dundee the long-established Scottish hub for Being Human, a Festival of the Humanities, with this year's theme being New Worlds.

When? 12-22 November 2020.

For more information: Please contact Daniel Cook co-coordinator of the Being Human Festival at the University of Dundee.

All year Community Engagement

What? The University of Dundee is committed to making a difference to the lives of the people of Dundee, Tayside and Scotland. We provide opportunities for communities and the University to work together to co‐create projects with mutual benefit and a lasting legacy for all partners.

For more information: Please contact Shabnam Wasim, our Community Engagement Officer.

All year Animating Science What? Our School of Life Sciences has partnered with DCA Learning to deliver a unique art and science collaborative programme supported by Wellcome through the Institutional Strategic Support Fund. Animating Science aims to develop stop motion animation skills with pupils and teachers (P7 - S3) and support them in creating animated films about Life Science concepts and processes. 

For more information: please contact Erin Hardee or the DCA Learning Team.

All year Bright Club Dundee What? A night of stand-up with our staff and students. This is great for developing your communication skills and confidence. Training and advice from experienced professionals.

When? Visit our Bright Club Dundee website to find out when the next show will be on.

For more information: Please contact the Public Engagement team.

All year Outer Space | Inner Space What? Outer Space | Inner Space brings researchers together with one of Dundee’s iconic landmarks, The Mills Observatory. The space created is used to develop, trial and offer public engagement activity that is technology-based, and reaches the widest possible community within a public space. 

When? Throughout the year. Science Saturdays events during the winter. Wednesday Wonders events are open to everyone at the University of Dundee and take place during the summer school holidays.

For more information: please contact Rolf Black.

 All year STEM Ambassadors What? Throughout the UK, STEM Ambassadors enthuse and inspire young people in science, technology, engineering and mathematics subjects, and open the doors to a world of opportunity. STEM East manage and coordinate the STEM Ambassador Hub East Scotland to help inspire young people in science, technology, engineering and mathematics.

When? Sign up at any time. To register click visit

For more information: Please visit the STEM Ambassadors webpage.


National events and activities

   Activity       Details

The Big Draw

What? The Big Draw is a visual literacy charity that promotes the universal language of drawing as a tool for learning, expression and invention. The charity leads a diverse programme of advocacy, empowerment and engagement, and is the founder and driving force behind The Big Draw Festival – the world’s biggest celebration of drawing. 

When? The Big Draw Festival takes place annually from 1 - 31 October. Although once registered you can list events any time of the year.

For more information: Please visit The Big Draw webpage

British Science Week

What? A national programme of events in science, engineering, technology and maths aimed at all ages.

When? 5-14 March 2021.

Deadline to submit your event: Registration for events now open

For more information: Please contact The British Science Association.

ESRC Festival of Social Sciences What? The ESRC Festival of Social Science is a celebration of the social sciences. Over the years Social Science Week has grown to a much larger and more inclusive 'festival' of activities, aimed at policymakers, business, the public and young people. Our Festival of Social Science offers a fascinating insight into some of the country's leading social science research and how it influences our social, economic and political lives - both now and in the future.

When? Festival call goes live in April. Events in the first week of November.

For more information: Please visit the ESRC Festival of Social Sciences webpage.

FameLab What? FameLab is a science communications competition designed to engage and entertain. Contestants from around the world take part armed only with their wits and a few props – the result is an unpredictable, enlightening and exciting way to encourage your curiosity.

When? Scottish Heats in January - February 2021

For more information: Please visit the FameLab webpage.

I'm a Scientist

What? I’m a Scientist is an online public engagement activity that gets all kinds of people working in science (researchers, technicians, managers, private sector, public sector… everyone!) talking to school students across the UK.

Scientists develop their communication skills, gain a fresh perspective on their work, and find out what young people think about science and the role of scientists. 

When? Applications all year round. Next activity planned for 5-14 March 2021 during British Science Week.

For more information: Please contact The British Science Association.

I'm an Engineer

What? I’m an Engineer is an online public engagement activity that gets people in engineering talking to school students all over the UK.

Engineers develop their communication skills, gain a fresh perspective on their work, and find out what young people think about engineering and the role of engineers.

When? 5-14 March 2021.

For more information: Please contact The British Science Association.