The British Science Festival lands in Leicester in just under two weeks (13 – 17 September). Each year, we celebrate the people, stories and ideas at the heart of science and it’s no different this time around.

We’re lucky to have some familiar faces on the programme, as well as some you might not recognise but should definitely be on your radar. The research they’ll be talking about is just part of the story – their passion, hard work and commitment to sharing their knowledge with the public however, is what will make you want to find out more…

Adam Rutherford: Genetics through time

Adam Rutherford is a mainstay in science broadcasting, from his popular Radio 4 show with Hannah Fry, to a host of documentaries and books exploring the history of culture and human society.

Adam’s Festival talk will take us on a journey of genetics, recounting what we have done well as a society, and some less-than-favourable events weaponizing this science.

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Anne-Marie Imafidon’s Presidential Address

The British Science Association’s (BSA) incoming President, Anne-Marie Imafidon, has a wealth of achievements under her belt: an MBE; a new book; and the accolade of the youngest girl to pass A-Level computing to name but a few.

The success of Anne-Marie’s social enterprise, Stemettes, will be a talking point in this interview and she’ll discuss the importance of removing barriers to opportunities in STEM for marginalised communities.

Anne-Marie follows in the footsteps of some other great names including Professor Dame Uta Frith, Professor Dame Jocelyn Bell-Burnell and Sir David Attenborough.

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DNA family secrets with Turi King

You might have watched DNA Family Secrets, hosted by Professor Turi King alongsideStrictly favourite, Stacey Dooley. Turi also led the work to identify the remains of Richard III in 2012-13.

The everyday person now has the power to discover more about their own genetics – for health or family tree purposes – and can even trace their pets’ genetic history. In addition to giving us the lowdown on how the personal genomics industry has thrived, Turi will provide a behind-the-scenes look at how these technologies are employed in criminology and history.

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Racism in education with Kalwant Bhopal

Kalwant Bhopal is a Professor of Education and Social Justice at the University of Birmingham. She’s the author of White Privilege: The Myth of a Post-racial Society, a book which details how neo-liberal policy has, and continues to, reinforce White privilege thereby upholding the marginalisation of Black and other minority ethnic communities through structural and institutional racism.

A frequent commentator on race in the media, Kalwant is an authoritative voice on the impact of social injustice, and advocate for more equitable practices in society.

Her talk will focus on education, and how racism in academia extends beyond the learning environment.

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The Future of Space Science

The UK’s contribution the space science is extensive. Executive Director of Space Park Leicester, Richard Ambrosi, and astronomer, Dr Sarah Casewell, will tell us just how significant this is at their event.

As former chair of the UK Space Agency’s Space Exploration Advisory Committee, Richard has a wealth of knowledge around the UK’s space potential. Sarah is an observational astronomer and is part of the James Webb Space Telescope Early Release Science team.

Book your tickets to discover what other space missions the UK will play an instrumental part in.

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NFTs: The future of digital art?

It’s been impossible to avoid hearing about NFTs (Non-Fungible Tokens) in recent years. To some, this form of digital currency represented by virtual artwork is the hottest new collectible, to others it’s a valuable investment. But the NFT space is not devoid of challenges.

With growing concerns over the potential impacts on digital privacy, the environment, and cyber security, a panel of experts from the Computer Arts Society, FutureEverything and Right Click Save ask, ‘how much of this is just hype?’

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The full British Science Festival 2022 programme line-up be found at:

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