Humanities Cultural Programme - Project Funding Call

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The current submission deadline is Friday 5 February, 2021. Please note: departmental approval is required by the deadline - submissions should be made in time for departments to review and approve applications in advance of the deadline. Calls open termly. Details of future deadlines are:


Hilary Term 2021 deadline: 5 February 2021

Trinity Term 2021 deadline: 14 May 2021

Michaelmas Term 2021 deadline: 29 October 2021

Further deadlines will be announced in due course. 


Further Particulars: 


Indicative Costs Guidance Documents:


The Humanities Cultural Progamme

Launched in 2019, the Humanities Cultural Programme (HCP) includes cultural events and public engagement activities over the years prior to the opening of the new Stephen A. Schwarzman Centre and is part of the public cultural and community programme in Oxford Humanities.

In consultation with researchers, students, and staff, and in partnership with external cultural organisations, experts, and consultants, the aims of the cultural programme are:

  • to create an exciting, thought-provoking, and enjoyable series of events featuring outstanding artists, writers, and thinkers, all powered by University of Oxford’s world-leading research and unique collections;
  • to increase our social impact and reaffirm the value of the humanities to our common future;
  • and to share and foster the insights and richness of the humanities and engage new audiences and participants of all ages.

The Humanities Cultural Programme is created through collaboration across all the Humanities Faculties and with local, national and international partners, including organisations as part of GLAM (Gardens Libraries and Museums). 


Who can apply for Humanities Cultural Programme Project Funding?

The funding stream related to this Open Call supports public programming that is led by University of Oxford researchers and/or students, or projects in collaboration with external partners. 

Undergraduates are welcome to apply and require a statement of support from their college organising tutor. Postgraduate students are welcome to apply and will require a statement of support from their Supervisor. Where external partners are involved in a project, a statement of support from the partner should be included in the application. Applicants are advised to consider how best to create a mutually beneficial project that leverages the skills and expertise of all parties in advance of making an application.


What activities/projects can be funded?

This stream funds activities that are planned to take place between 2020 and 2024. Calls open monthly and the deadline for the current call is given above.

Activities which are eligible for HCP Project Funding include (but are not limited to):

  • Performances of any kind (music, theatre, spoken word, comedy, dance etc.)
  • Installations, displays, and exhibitions
  • Panel events that bring new people to Oxford 
  • Community co-creation projects that lead to a public event(s).


What level of funding and support is available?

Projects with funding ranging up to £3,000 will be considered. Successful projects are overseen by one of the Humanities Cultural Programme Event Managers and TORCH provides successful applicants with in-kind support including a website and promotion, dedicated events team, and evaluation support.

Applications for funds of up to £10,000 may also be considered, however, these will need to include evidence of ambitious cross-disciplinary activity. There should be large anticipated audiences and an audience engagement strategy, evidencing how relationships are already there, or will be deeply involved with the project.

The requirements for larger funding are more extensive - applicants for sums of £3,000+ are required to discuss their plans with TORCH Director, Professor Wes Williams (, and Head of Cultural Programming and Partnerships, Dr Victoria McGuinness ( before submitting an application.


How are applications reviewed?

Applications are reviewed by the Humanities Cultural Programme Steering Group, in accordance with the Humanities and University funding regulations and procedures. The group reviews applications against the four key areas given below:

  • Fit with the vision of the Humanities Cultural Programme and the Oxford research landscape. Applications should clearly further one or all of the aims of the cultural programme as given above. Applications should engage a clear humanities research question and should describe how the project fits within, extends, or disrupts the existing research landscape in Oxford Humanities or the University more broadly.
  • Proposed audiences and proposed benefits to those audiences. Activities should aim to reach new audiences/participants beyond the University and applications should include clear audience engagement strategies. Applicants should consider who specifically the proposed activity is for and how to reach and engage those specific audiences. A general public audience is too broad. Applications should highlight where new audiences/participants can be reached through the project and should detail the social, cultural, community, and academic benefits of projects for audiences, participants, external partners, and the University.
  • Lasting legacy, future opportunities, and strategic collaborations. Applicants are advised to describe the proposed output of any project as well as details of any possible future legacies and future/strategic opportunities for collaboration and development.
  • Deliverability and budgeting. Applications should include detailed and realistic timelines for activity. Any substantial risks to activity/timelines should be considered and mitigations supplied where possible. Budgets should be well considered and achievable within the University’s financial guidelines. The HCP team (, can review budgets and provide indications of costs to include and estimations of costs in advance of the submission of applications. The payment of professional fees and equipment costs are particularly complex – applicants whose budgets include professional fees/equipment are required to contact Justine Shaw for advice before submitting an application. Applications should note whether any other related internal/external funding exists and give details of the source and proposed use of that funding.


Applicants are strongly advised to read the Further Particulars and Indicative Costs Guidance Documents for this funding call which are available above.


How are applications submitted?

Applications are submitted via IRAMS.  Applications must be submitted by an individual with a University of Oxford Single Sign-On (SSO) account. Applicants without an SSO are advised to contact the HCP team (

Applications are accepted termly. The IRAMS submission deadlines for each call are given above – the deadline for applications is 5pm on the date given and departmental approval should be in place by the deadline.


When are applicants notified of outcomes?
Notifications of awards will be given within 4 weeks of deadline closing.



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