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Funded conferences

A key part of the BIH mission is the promotion of new ideas and forms of understanding in the humanities, which is achieved by fostering a climate of interdisciplinary research and collaboration among colleagues across Birkbeck and beyond.

We develop occasional conferences and other events with other partners, for example, in early 2020 the Dissent in Dark Times festival of critical thought was held in partnership with the London Review of Books in the main Birkbeck building in London's Bloomsbury. The second Dissent in Dark Times will be held next year, on 6 and 7 March, and will be an entirely virtual event, once again in collaboration with the London Review of Books. Bookings will open, via the Birkbeck website in December 2020.  

In addition, each year the BIH steering group committee allocates a part of the annual budget to support conferences, symposia and workshops convened by colleagues within Birkbeck. Staff and researchers submit applications for funding appropriate to the remit of the BIH: interdisciplinary research in the field of critical thinking and questions of social justice in the humanities. 

As an external-facing institute, BIH events are generally open to the public. We encourage funded conferences and workshops to be open to the public in whole, or in part. This includes using media resources to document and disseminate events more broadly.


Applications are considered by the BIH steering group on an annual basis. The next decision making meeting will be in Summer 2021. Guidelines are currently being revised to take account of the increasing use of virtual resources. These will be available for potential applicants by March 2021.

Applications must reflect the interdisciplinary approach of the BIH and will be presented to the BIH steering group by your faculty or school representative. Please ensure that they are aware of your bid and prepared to speak to the application - representatives may wish to ask you questions or offer advice prior to the steering group meeting. You can view the current list of steering group members. For further information, please