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Connect and collaborate

We create opportunities for academics and the wider public to engage in conversation. This vital first step helps us to find common ground across different disciplines, leading to the co-production of knowledge with impact.

The history of UCL's engagement with the public is as old as the university itself.

Our arrival in east London affords us a new and exciting chapter in the way we reach beyond the bounds of the institution to the wider world.

We value the insights our local communities can give us into their challenges, and look to them for inspiration in where to take our research next.

Here you'll find opportunities to connect, to start those conversations around areas of shared interest.

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Inspiring your journey 

Three leaders delivery a community workshop.

Working closely with charities and non-profit organisations, we are growing mutually beneficial partnerships through events and online. Due to Covid-19 many of our in-person events had to be put on hold but there are still plenty of ways to take those first steps in your public engagement journey.

Here are just a few of the programmes running throughout the year to give you an idea of the breadth of ways in which you can start conversations around your research and interests.

Three people laugh together on a bench.

Community Research Initiative for Students

Make a difference with your masters dissertation or PhD thesis. We can connect you with London’s voluntary sector to share knowledge and ideas, to help shape your research around a current community need.


People on a zoom call.

Public Engagement Network 

A combination of regular meetings and a monthly email newsletter, this network brings together UCL staff and students interested in public and community engagement.

Students work together round a laptop.

Social Hackathons

Social Hackathons are solution-creating events that connect UCL volunteers with local not-for-profit organisations. Students placed within local charities learn from professionals to gain valuable first-hand insight into Third Sector careers.


Student volunteers direct members of the public in a park.

Volunteering opportunities

Join the 2000 students who have volunteered their time this year by working with London communities. You'll learn new skills, meet new people and make a real difference to this incredible city.