Festival 2021

Join the Oxford Uehiro Centre and colleagues from across Oxford in exploring how to think critically about life in this online public festival of practical ethics. The Festival of Arguments is free to take part in, and focusses on exploring today’s most pressing ethical dilemmas. Join us for (virtual) walks, talks, debates, competitions, classes and more!

How to get involved

Each day during the week a variety of events are taking place that delve deeply into specific issues, as well as taking a step back to explore what practical ethics really is, and how important it is to all of us as we navigate the modern world. We ask how we should respond to our local environment, explore deep-seated ethical responses in individuals and also think more widely about how we can work as communities to achieve the ethical outcomes we want. 

Lunchtime events include a new programme of ‘Bitesize ethics’ – short classes with lots of opportunities for discussion which explore a variety of topics. 

Leading up to the festival we have our Story Time and drawing competitions for 3-12 year olds, and the photography competition for all ages. 

Events will be added as the details are finalised so please do check in again to see more activities. You can keep in touch by joining the Festival's mailing list and following us on Facebook and Twitter.

We do hope that you will join us for these events, which can be booked online from this web page. If you’re interested in putting on an event as part of the festival next year, or would like to suggest an event please complete our festival feedback form or email us. 

Sign up to our mailing list!
Festival feedback

Festival feedback

We'd love to receive your feedback. Please tell us about your experiences of the Festival of Arguments 2021 using the feedback form here: https://oxford.onlinesurveys.ac.uk/festival-2021

Festival 2021
Festival 2020
Thinking Out Loud Series

The current focus of Thinking Out Loud is on Animals and Pandemics. Covid-19 is very likely a zoonotic disease, which means that it was transmitted from animals  to humans. Other dangerous infectious diseases, such as SARS, MERS, Ebola and HIV originated in animals too. In fact, of all emerging infectious diseases in humans, 75% are zoonotic. Joining Katrien Devolder are philosophers, scientists and other experts to discuss how we might prevent future pandemics. See all our TOL interviews on our YouTube channel playlist.

Episode 3: Factory farms are breeding grounds for pandemics! with Professor Aaron S. Gross (University of San Diego)

In this interview with Dr Katrien Devolder (University of Oxford), Professor Aaron S. Gross (University of San Diego) explains why factory farms are breeding grounds for pandemics, and what we, as individuals, can do to help end factory farming (even if we don't feel ready yet to become a vegan...)




Episode 2: Should we feed our pets a vegan diet?, with Dr Josh Milburn (Sheffield)

There are plenty of good reasons to avoid products from factory farms. We can change our own diets, but can we change that of our pets? We discuss the option of vegan pet food, pet food made from invertebrates, and in vitro meat (incl. in vitro human flesh!).

Episode 1:  How to prevent future pandemics, with Jeff Sebo (Professor of Environmental Studies at NYU)

Katrien and Jeff discuss factory farms as breeding grounds for pandemics, and the importance of considering human and animal health together.