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Online OE Events 2022

Our online events programme is still available for you to watch and we continue to add new events/lectures throughout the year.  Find out more about the events below and use the booking form at the bottom of the page to register for as many as you like! Once registered we will be in touch with more information.

Living an Ethical Life

Regarded as the world's most influential living philosopher, Professor Peter Singer delivered an inspiring talk on ‘Living an Ethical Life'. The Professor of Bioethics at Princeton University discussed a wide range of topics, including how to pick an ethical career, non-human animal rights and becoming a vegan, the problem of global poverty and ethics of the lockdown.

US Covid-19 Response Strategy

Live from across the pond, Alex Tabarrok, Professor of Economics at George Mason University and co-founder of the online Marginal Revolution University, shared a detailed insight into his role in developing the US Covid-19 response strategy.

Justice Towards Enemies

Professor Michel Paradis, Senior Attorney for the US Department of Defense and Lecturer at Columbia Law School, provided a thought-provoking virtual talk on 'Justice Toward Enemies: Practice and Historical Precedents'.


From fake news to the future of space exploration and technology, speakers including David Ault (2000), Richard Benwell (2001), Lokesh Jain (2017) and Alok Kumar (2015) discussed a range of topics at the student-organised TEDxKES event. View the recordings from the event

Political Awareness Week 

Political Awareness Week featured an array of guest speakers including Old Edwardians, West Midlands Mayor, Andy Street (1981), MP Saqib Bhatti (2003) and former Director of Counter-Terrorism at the Home Office, Robert Whalley (1965). Talks were on topics including race, identity, gender and sexuality in politics and a virtual ‘Question Time' like debate. Register to listen to the talks

Plato's Critique of 'Scientific' Politics

Professor Jacob Howland, McFarlin Professor of Philosophy Emeritus at the University of Tulsa, and distinguished classical scholar and political philosopher, provided an interesting virtual talk on Plato's Critique of 'Scientific' Politics. 

Why The Germans Do It Better

Journalist and broadcaster John Kampfner talks about his recently published bestseller, Why The Germans Do It Better: Notes from a Grown-Up Country, which charts the journey that Germany has taken since 1945, focusing on political institutions, the economy, culture, society and identity.

Theories of Punishment and Criminalisation

Professor Brenner Fissell is an expert in the fields of criminal law and military law, and applies insights from political theory to specific issues in criminal law. His scholarship has appeared in numerous law reviews. His work on Guantanamo Detainees' Rights has been cited in the New York Times, and his work on military law has been cited by The Washington Post.

Miss Margaret Davis Memorial Recital

The Miss Margaret Davis Memorial Recital is one of the most treasured events in our musical year. The recital celebrates both the legacy of Miss Davis to music in these schools, and the generosity of all who have helped in so many ways to build and support the playing you will hear.

The Dawning of the Asian Century 

Professor Chris Ogden (1995), a leading scholar and expert specialising in China, India and Asia's rise to worldwide importance, and the study of great power politics, gives a talk on the Dawning of the Asian Century.

'Fake News' and US Politics

Professor Scott Lucas, a leading scholar and expert in the fields of American Studies, Politician Science and the New Media talks about Fake News and US Politics.

Behavioural Biases of Investors

Professor H Kent Baker, a leading scholar and expert in the fields of behavioural finance and risk management, discusses Behavioural Biases of Investors. 

The Reacher Guy

Dr Heather Martin, author of Lee Child's (1973) biography The Reacher Guy, gave an insightful talk into Lee's life experiences including how his time at King Edward's, and in Birmingham, shaped his books.

Holocaust Survivor

To mark Holocaust Memorial Day, the KES community had the opportunity to hear the testimony of Holocaust survivor, Joanna Millan BEM. Joanna told her extraordinary story of survival, being orphaned in Theresienstadt, growing up in England with a new identity given to her by her adoptive parents and her subsequent journey to piece together her own identity and her family's history.

The US Elections

Professor Erik Goldstein, expert on international relations and the history of diplomacy, provided an incisive analysis on the aftermath of the US Presidential Elections.

KES/KEHS Spring Concert

A lot of the pieces for the KES/KEHS Spring Concert were recorded at home, and compiled by staff and students in our Music Departments. Please enjoy the hard work and commitment that has gone into this concert, even during lockdown! 

Anti-System Politics

Professor Jonathan Hopkin, Professor at the London School of Economics, provides an online talk on ‘Anti-System Politics: The Crisis of Market Liberalism in Rich'.

Reggae Reggae Sauce! 

Entrepreneur Levi Roots provides an engaging and entertaining virtual talk on his childhood in Jamaica, career as a musician and appearance on BBC's Dragons' Den when two dragons invested in his Reggae Reggae Sauce. 

Climate and Development in the Age of Adaptation

Professor Adil Najam is a leading public policy scholar whose teaching, research and public engagement focuses on international environment and development policy, global governance, diplomacy and negotiation, South Asia, and higher education in developing countries. He is the Inaugural Dean of the Frederick S. Pardee School of Global Studies and a Professor of International Relations and Earth & Environment at Boston University. An author of over 100 scholarly articles and book chapters, Professor Najam shares his expertise with us on the topic of climate and development in the age of adaptation.

Historical knowledge among other knowledges: a few comparitive thoughts

Professor Michael Bentley is Emeritus Professor of Modern History in the University of St Andrews and Senior Research Fellow in Historiography at St Hugh's College, Oxford, where he is also an Admissions selector for History. He is best known for books relating to modern British history, and the history of historical thought and writing. He is currently writing a comparative study of Western historiography since the Enlightenment for Princeton University Press.

Professor David Courtwright - Limbic Capitalism: How Bad Habits Became Big Business

We live in an age of addiction, from compulsive gaming and shopping to binge eating and opioid abuse. Sugar can be as habit-forming as cocaine, researchers tell us, and social media apps are hooking our kids. In his latest book, “The Age of Addiction: How Bad Habits Became Big Business” (Harvard University Press, 2019), David Courtwright, presidential professor emeritus at the University of North Florida and a leading expert on addiction, chronicles the triumph of what he calls “limbic capitalism,” the growing network of competitive businesses targeting the brain pathways responsible for feeling, motivation and long-term memory.

These businesses capitalize on the ancient quest to discover, cultivate and refine new and habituating pleasures. Courtwright holds out hope that limbic capitalism can be contained by organized opposition from across the political spectrum. Progressives, nationalists and traditionalists have made common cause against the purveyors of addiction before. They could do it again, but it will be necessary to understand the history and character of the global enterprises that create and cater to our bad habits.

Frederick Douglass in His Time and Our Own

Professor Levine is the Distinguished University Professor of English at the University of Maryland, College Park, with wide interests in 19th-century American literature and culture and a particular fascination with the life and work of Frederick Douglass. Impressively prolific, Prof Levine is a highly visible figure in Americanist literary circles and has contributed important work to the burgeoning field of hemispheric and transnational American literary studies. He is the General Editor of The Norton Anthology of American Literature and past winner of Guggenheim and NEH Fellowships.

Drawing from his latest book, The Failed Promise: Reconstruction, Frederick Douglass, and the Impeachment of Andrew Johnson, Professor Levine examines the importance and legacy of the great American social reformer, abolitionist and statesman, Frederick Douglass. He focusses on one of Douglass’s most famous speeches, "What to the Slave Is the Fourth of July?" 

Nanotechnology for Treatment of Cancers and Brain

A Professor of Bio-imaging and Analysis at Imperial College London, Professor Alexandra Porter runs a research group that uses correlative electron microscopy techniques to characterise interfaces between biomaterials and cells. Her great interest is in developing a mechanistic understanding of how the chemistry of these materials controls their degradation behaviour, and ultimate bioactivity, to improve their performance and safety. Professor Porter holds an MEng from Oxford University, and a PhD from Cambridge University in Biomedical Materials. She worked as a postdoctoral research fellow at the Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory, MIT and The Nanoscience Centre Cambridge, under the guidance of Sir Mark Welland and Prof. Paul Midgley. She held the Oppenheimer Research fellowship for physical sciences at Cambridge University and a Junior Research Fellowship at Newhall College, Cambridge.

Professor Patrick Geoghegan - Robert Emmet and the Liberation of Ireland

Professor Geoghegan is an expert on the British-Irish relationship in the late-eighteenth and nineteenth centuries, as well as on the competing themes of constitutional nationalism and republicanism. He presents the award-winning Talking History on Newstalk radio, one of the most downloaded podcasts, and since 2006 has been praised for covering all aspects of history, from ancient times to the present day. In addition, he served as a special adviser to the Taoiseach, Leo Varadkar, between June 2017 and June 2020.


Professor James Costa - Darwin's 'On the Origin of Species'

Professor Costa  is an evolutionary biologist, entomologist, and Darwin and Wallace scholar.  He is Executive Director of the Highlands Biological Station in Highlands, North Carolina, and Professor of Evolutionary Biology at Western Carolina University in Cullowhee, North Carolina.  An all-around field naturalist, Jim has studied insect ecology and social behavior from the southern Blue Ridge of North Carolina to Central and South America. Professor Costa will be talking about Darwin’s On the Origin of Species, one of the greatest books ever written. 

His research and writing have largely focused on Darwin, Wallace, and the history of evolutionary thinking. In 2009 Harvard published The Annotated Origin, Jim’s annotated edition of On the Origin of Species, designed to guide readers through the historical context, structure, and content of Darwin’s masterwork.