Forthcoming Events


Past Events

October 2021

AFAF sponsored a panel debate at the  Buxton Battle of Ideas festival held in the magnificent Devonshire Dome, in Buxton, Derbyshire, on Saturday 30 October. At 14.55,  Dennis Hayes (AFAF), Andy Shaw (Comedy Unleashed), and Sophie Watson (Free Speech Champions) and Adam Whittaker (Beauty in the Universe) discussed ‘Should we cancel Cancel culture?‘. Ella Whelan was the Chair. A video of the event will be available shortly.

AFAF sponsored a discussion on Selling Out: the McDonaldisation of universities at the Battle of Ideas festival in London on Sunday 10 October. Chair: Professor Dennis Hayes 

Professor Dennis Hayes and Professor Eric Kaufmann debated the Higher Education (Freedom of Speech) Bill live on Andrew Doyle’s Free Speech Nation programme on GN News on 10 October. It was filmed at the Battle of Ideas Festival in Church House, Westminster, London.

September 2021

Professor Dennis Hayes was a speaker at a panel discussion organised by Dont Divide Us on Tuesday 21 September to discuss the implications for free speech of the ‘Race Equality Charter’ produced by Advance HE for UK universities.

Professor Dennis Hayes talked about The Dangerous Rise of Therapeutic Education in the ‘Uncancelled’ segment of the Mark Dolan Show on GB News on Saturday 11 September.

August 2021

Professor Dennis Hayes talked about free speech and the therapeutic turn in education on GB News on Thursday 5 August at 17.45.

July 2021

AFAF  sponsored a discussion on whether the government’s Free  Speech Bill will effectively challenge campus censorship at the Battle of Ideas festival Open for Debate day on Saturday 31 July at Church House, Westminster, London.

March 2021

Professor Dennis Hayes chaired a discussion with Oxbridge academics, Arif Ahmed, David Butterfield and Paul Yowell on ‘Defending academic freedom: culture and governance’ at the online forum Academic Freedom Under Threat organised by Taylor Vinters and The University of Buckingham on Friday 19 March.

February 2021

Professor Dennis Hayes and Professor Eric Kaufmann debated ‘UK Government’s Free Speech Champion: Hero or Oxymoron?‘ at the first Free Speech Champions ‘Drop In’ workshop on Thursday 11 March.

January 2021

Professor Dennis Hayes was the UK respondent to the new Freedom to Learn policy paper from the National Association of Scholars (US) at an international online event held on Wednesday 13 January.

December 2020

Professor Dennis Hayes gave a talk entitled ‘Je suis Samuel‘ asking people to remember Samuel Paty at the Freedom Babbleon orgnaised by WorldWrite on Saturday 19 December

July 2020

Professor Dennis Hayes introduced a discussion about Ray Bradbury’s Fahrenheit 451 at the AoI Book Club (online) on 30 July: Who are today’s firemen and what are they burning?

December 2019

Seminar: Is ‘toxic masculinity’ dangerous in the academy? (the third in a series of three Battle of Ideas Satellite events on ‘The Silencing of Speech’, sponsored by AFAF)

On Thursday 14 December, Elizabeth Hobson, communications director of the political party Justice For Men and Boys (J4MB),  discussed what she sees as a new diminished sense of what it means to be a man today. Responding to her talk was Dr Nicholas Joseph, a parent of two girls and a lecturer at the Universities of Derby and Keele. The Chair was Dr Vanessa Pupavac (University of Nottingham). Details on the East Midlands Salon website.

November 2019

Seminar: By esrasing the past are we racilising the campus? (the second in a series of three Battle of Ideas Satellite events on ‘The Silencing of Speech’, sponsored by AFAF)

On Thursday 28 November at 7PM  Dr Jim Butcher (Canterbury Christ Church University) and Dr Ruth Mieschbuehler (University of Derby)  explored the background to decolonising the curriculum and the dangers thst this approach may present for the future of education. Folasade Lamikanra, a writer and education researcher, chaired  the debate. Details on the East Mildands Salon website.

October 2019

Seminar: The dangerous rise of academic mobbing (the first in a series of three Battle of Ideas Satellite events on ‘The Silencing of Speech’, sponsored by AFAF)

On Thursday 17 October at 7 PM in Derby, Professor Nigel Biggar (Regius Professor of Moral and Pastoral Theology, University of Oxford) gave a talk about his work and being subject to an international campaign to close down his five-year ‘Ethics and Empire’ project which sought to have a balanced assessment of colonialism. Details on the East Midlands Salon website

September 2019

On Thursday 12 September, Professor Dennis Hayes gave a keynote talk at the Higher Education Institutional Research Conference 2019, held at the University of Wolverhampton, on ‘How the university lost its way: sixteen threats to academic freedom‘. 

June 2019

On 26 June 2019 Professor Dennis Hayes presented a short provocation at the Midlands HE Policy Network Meeting at the University of Wolverhampton, based on the decline of academic freedom, entitled: ‘Is the The University is dead?

On 20 June, at the East Midlands Salon in Derby,  Professor Dennis Hayes will talk about the ‘therapeutic university’ and the ‘snowflake generation’  and their implications for academic freedom.

November 2017

On the 15 November 2017 Professor Dennis Hayes, Dr. Joanna Williams (Kent) and Tom Slater (Spiked) successfully defended the Free Speech University Rankings (FSUR) methodology and findings after being called to present evidence to the parliamentary Joint Committee on Human Rights.

October 2017

Professor Dennis Hayes will be discussing Groupthink Universities with Noah Carl (University of Oxford), Nick Hillman (Director, HEPI), Paul A. Taylor (University of Leeds) and Cathy Young (US journalist and commentator) at the Battle of Ideas festival at the Barbican on Saturday 28 October (Cinema 3 10 AM).

Professor Dennis Hayes will argue for the proposition ‘This house regrets no platforming policies in universities’ at the Warwick Debating Union on Thursday 26 October at 7 PM.

September 2017

Professor Dennis Hayes will be speaking on ‘What is the purpose of a university?’ at Abertay University on Wednesday 20 September.

June 2017

Professor Dennis Hayes spoke at the Festival of Higher Education 2017 at the University of Buckingham on Thursday 29 June at 2.50 in the Marquee on  Free Speech on Campus; Rights and Responsibilities. Respondent: Professor Anthony Glees, Director, Centre for Security & Intelligence Studies, University of Buckingham. Chair: Professor Sue Edwards, University of Buckingham.

Dennis’s speech was widely reported in the national press, including the Telegraph, Independent and many local papers. He appeared on ‘High Noon‘ Newstalk Radio, Dublin on Wednesday 5 July (12.00) discussing ‘Safe Spaces’ in universities with George Hook.

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