The Be Curious 2021 programme is here!

Be Curious will be going online for 2021 with the biggest programme of live events yet!

The 2021 Be Curious logo banner.

Launching on Monday 5 July, the sixth annual instalment of the hugely popular Be Curious showcase runs until Thursday 15 July and aims to showcase how research at Leeds is making a difference to people’s lives.

The 10-day festival boasts a jam-packed programme of family activities, as well as a brand-new series of ‘LATES’ – events for adults that you can tune in to from home.

Dr Alexa Ruppertsberg, Head of Public Engagement with Research, said: “What a journey the past year has been! We’ve gone from a postponed Be Curious 2020 in March to adapting to a completely new format.

“The Public Engagement team was eager to give our academics and researchers opportunities to inspire wonder, help with sensemaking and challenge long-held views.

“Be Curious will also encourage participation and involvement to influence behaviours – and nourish natural curiosity with the public in these changed times.”

A year on from last year’s programme, which was postponed from March to October, Be Curious now features 18 live events – including some with external speakers – and the brand new Be Curious LATES sessions for adults. 

This year’s festivities will highlight the United Nations’ Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) through four main themes, showcasing how research at Leeds is ‘Making a World of Difference’:

  • Caring for Health 
  • Enabling Sustainable Lives 
  • Inspired Innovation and Discovery; and 
  • Supporting Society. 

You can read more about the SDGs and just some of the ways in which we’re making an impact on the Sustainability website.

Dr Ruppertsberg added: “Fingers crossed for a successful festival, and a huge thank you to the 80-plus staff members providing such a fantastic two-week programme!”

Headline event – Be Curious x Unlimited Space Agency: Live from the Space Shed 

Get ready for blast off on Saturday 10 July as we go on a very special Be Curious trip to outer space!

Broadcasting live from the Unlimited Space Agency Space Shed all day, join our super team of SENSE CDT researchers, space scientists, oceanographers, earthquake experts, Antarctic explorers and all-round climate champions for a not-to-be-missed interactive day for all the family.

An Unlimited Space Agency astronaut performs in front of a crowdPhoto credit: Unlimited Space Agency

Among the fun-filled day of activities and interviews will be the opportunity to grill some of our experts – including University Chancellor and Director of the British Antarctic Survey, Professor Dame Jane Francis – as they take turns in the hot seat. 

We might even meet a real-life astronaut on our travels… 

Family events

Families are invited to design, imagine, make, do, glue, explore and more with our series of virtual, after-school events.

They will be streamed live on YouTube at 4pm each weekday between Monday 5 and Thursday 15 July.

Reimagine household recycling and put it to use to make a masterpiece in The Art of Networks.

Meet our University Sustainability Superheroes and help us dream up a future for our city in My Future Leeds.

Get up close and personal with MRI scanners and see just how powerful magnets can be in Magnetic Magic.

Learn about local language quirks and why we use the words we do in Your Words: Inherited and Adopted.

And that’s not all! See the full programme on the Be Curious website.

LATES events

Brand new for 2021 is a series of Be Curious LATES events exclusively for grown-ups!

Join us at 8pm on Mondays to Thursdays, when LATES will be streaming live on YouTube. 

Each night, we invite you to meet three of our researchers and get to grips with the wonderous research that goes on inside a university. 

The Be Curious LATES 2021 event banner.

Why not take a journey through the galaxy and explore our prospects for detecting extra-terrestrial life with astrophysics experts from the School of Physics and Astronomy?

Or join us for an evening of exploration, arts and archives, drawing upon the rich collections of Leeds University Library Special Collections.

There really is something for everyone!

View the full Be Curious LATES programme

Other content

It’s not just about live events: colleagues from across the University have been busy preparing a huge range of fantastic submissions, which will allow us to bring you 10 whole days of Be Curious fun!

Every day from Monday 5 to Thursday 15 July, we’ll be sharing two-minute ‘wow’ demonstrations and try-at-home activities on the Be Curious website and via the Public Engagement Twitter account, to give you an idea of just some of the exciting things we get up to.

Tickets for all live events are free but places are limited, so make sure you register via the Be Curious website as soon as possible.

Follow along with the fun on the @UniLeedsEngage Twitter account and by using #BeCurious21

Please contact the Public Engagement team for further information.

Posted in: