Upcoming events from OPEN

Connecting research with policy can be a daunting task, given the many forms of government and ways to engage. OPEN offers a diverse range of activities throughout the year, including workshops, talks, masterclasses, and networking events. These events offer practical guidance to researchers and policymakers on how to collaborate effectively and bridge the gap between their respective areas of expertise. 

Engaging with policymakers is essential for ensuring that research findings are taken into account when making policy decisions. By working together, researchers and policymakers can create evidence-based policies that have a real impact on society.

Researchers and professional services staff from all areas of the University are welcome to take part in OPEN's activities, and increase their confidence for engaging with policymakers and better understand how to bridge the divide between their areas of expertise and work together in effective ways.

New events are being added regularly so Join OPEN or follow OPEN on twitter for updates.

See a pdf version of the upcoming events calendar here.

Workshop: Research to Policy Impact: Strategies for Translating Findings into Policy Messages

6 Feb, 9:30 – 12:30

Worcester College

How can researchers best prepare an engagement plan to connect their work with policymakers and decision-makers? And how can research outcomes be translated into compelling policy recommendations?

To help researchers answer these key questions, this interactive half-day workshop enables participants to develop effective strategies for research promotion and real policy influence.

Participants will learn to design early-stage stakeholder engagement plans to share research findings with policymakers and other influential groups. Through small-group collaboration and hands-on activities, attendees will focus on successfully converting academic insights into actionable evidence to better inform policy decisions.


Kay Jenkinson. Knowledge Exchange Specialist at the Leverhulme Centre for Nature Recovery and former Knowledge Exchange Manager (Policy) with leading research impact expertise

Sarah Higginson. Researcher at the Environmental Change Institute.


This opportunity is intended for researchers from all divisions 

Masterclass: How to maximize the impact of policy advice?

22 Feb, 3:00 – 4:30

Blavatnik School of Government

The Oxford Policy Engagement Network (OPEN) and the Centre for Study of African Economies (CSAE) are pleased to invite you to this masterclass, in which we will explore the critical question of how those aiming to advise policymakers can enhance the impact of their recommendations in the face of complex political dynamics. Dr. Shaheen Naseer will moderate a conversation between  Professor Stefan Dercon, Director of CSAE, and Professor of Economic Policy with Lai Yahaia, former Special Advisor to the Chief of Staff to the President of Nigeria, and Adeyemi Dipeolu, Special Adviser to the Coalition for Dialogue on Africa, to address the challenges in the traditional approach to policy advice. They will discuss how standard recommendations often overlook the intricate political constraints faced by leaders in developing countries.

Through compelling examples from the context of Nigeria and other African countries, the event will showcase how a nuanced understanding of local political conditions can pave the way for developmentally impactful and politically viable policy recommendations.

Professor Stefan Dercon. Director, CSAE, and Professor of Economic Policy
Mr. Lai Yahaya. Former Special Advisor to the Chief of Staff to the President, Nigeria
Adeyemi Dipeolu. Special Adviser to the Coalition for Dialogue on Africa. Adjunct Professor at the Nelson Mandela School of Governance of the University of Cape Town and Fellow of the Development Leadership Dialogue Institute of SOAS, University of London

Dr. Shaheen Naseer. Postdoctoral researcher for the Oxford Martin Programme on the Future of Development at the Oxford Martin School, University of Oxford


This opportunity is intended for researchers from all divisions

Workshop: Introduction to policy engagement for music and sound researchers

6 March, 10:00 - 12:00

Faculty of Music

The Oxford Policy Engagement Network (OPEN) are pleased to invite you to this workshop, in which we will explain the fundamental skills needed for researchers across the university working on music and sound from any disciplinary background to broker relationships with the policy world. This training session will demonstrate the value and power of such research in helping to answer crucial policy questions of the 21st century, from political participation and polarization to community storytelling and the regulation of free speech and protest. We will hear from Professor Naomi Waltham-Smith, a specialist in the politics of listening who has experience of working with policymakers. The OPEN team will also share their insights into research-policy partnerships. We'll provide advice on how to map your key stakeholders, to build engagement from your research, and craft outputs of relevance to policymakers. For those interested in learning more, there will be three workshops with policymakers focused on different aspects of music and sound research to be held during the spring and summer.


Naomi Waltham-Smith. Professor of Music, University of Oxford

Thomas Kesley, Humanities and Public Policy Officer (OPEN)

Jose Rojas Alvarado. Learning & Development Manager (OPEN)


This opportunity is intended for music and sound researchers at Oxford

Workshop: Getting started in policy engagement

10 April, 10:00 - 11:30 Online

If you are interested in creating valuable connections between academia and policymakers and sharing your research insights to better inform public policies, this opportunity is for you. This introductory session, tailored to those new to policy engagement, is designed to support researchers in transforming their motivations for impact into a structured understanding of how to engage with the public policy world. In this session, you will benefit from a combination of presentations, short exercises, and opportunities to discuss with peer researchers your motivations, plans, and challenges when it comes to engaging with policymakers and the public policy world.


Jose Rojas Alvarado. Learning & Development Manager


This opportunity is intended for researchers from all divisions / DPhil Students/ Professional Services Staff