Join us at HowTheLightGetsIn London!

IAI School

HowTheLightGetsInLondon2019 HowTheLightGetsInLondon2019 HowTheLightGetsInLondon2019

"I'm so impressed by the work of the IAI School. Their programme is precisely the sort of thing I wish I'd done at school. While I missed out, students now are set to be stimulated and inspired" - Bruce Daisley, Vice-President EMEA of Twitter

The IAI School is aimed at 16-18 year old pre-university students who have an interest in critical thinking and want to broaden their understanding of what higher education offers beyond the national curriculum. Following its continuing successes both online and at our physical festivals, the IAI School returns to HowTheLightGetsIn London 2023 where a host of leading academics will inspire the next generation. As well as our exclusive IAI School programme (see below), tickets allow access to the rest of the HowTheLightGetsIn festival talks, debates, comedy and music.

This year the IAI School is kindly sponsored by AIG.



10:00 - 10:45 : Richard Swinburne - Good and Evil

For centuries thinkers have puzzled over the questions of good and evil in the world. Join world-leading Oxford philosophy professor Richard Swinburne as he examines the nature of good and evil and explains why they might exist in the natural world.


11:30-12:15 : AIG Workshops - The Nature of Risk

At every point in our life we encounter risk of some sort or another. In this unique and interactive workshop, AIG will take you on an immersive tour through the types of risk that confront us everyday, from cyberspace and reality tv to the very simple choices that we make day-to-day. Discover the fascinating world of how chance, possibility and danger are integral to all of our lives.  

Lunch & Headline Debates

14:00 - 14:45 : Thangam Debbonaire - How to Become a Politician

What's it like to be in politics? Who should you vote for? And why should we even vote at all? Join shadow leader of the House of Commons Thangam Debbonaire for a captivating ride through politics: how to become a politician, how to make it the commons and how you can shape the future for the better. 

15:30 - 16:30: Chris Jay

University of York’s Philosophy professor, Chris Jay, hosts an open question and answer session to tackle students’ biggest questions concerning higher education. This includes admissions, entrance examinations and interviews, personal statements, and what to prepare for and what to expect when you get to university.

Discussion Break

18:00: Welcome Dinner


10:00 - 10:45 : Simon Blackburn - More Philosophy, Not Less

The history of science has seen some of the most groundbreaking discoveries about the cosmos and the natural world, leading many figures such as Stephen Hawking to announce the death of philosophy. Join world leading philosopher Simon Blackburn as he disagrees and argues that we need more philosophy today, not less.


11:30 - 12:30 : Barry Smith - Philosophy and the Senses

It has been centuries since science shattered the Ancient Greek myth that there were only four elements. But few of us know that long ago neuroscience equally dispelled with the Greek myth of only five senses. Join philosopher and director of the Institute of Philosophy Barry Smith as he takes you on an immersive tour to discover the senses that you never knew you had.

Lunch & Headline Debates

14:00 - 14:45 : Explore Debates

Discussion Break

15:30 - 16:30: Explore Debates


If you represent a school or institution who would like to make a group booking for the IAI School, or enquire about an institutional subscription, please email us at for more information.

Please be aware that 16-18-year-olds purchasing individual tickets for our IAI School programme are responsible for their own safety, and and will be asked to show their ID at the box office.

London 2023 School Ticket

The IAI School Ticket provides exclusive access to the IAI School programme, as well as full access to HowTheLightGetsin talks, debates, music and comedy. It also includes breakfast on both days, a welcome dinner and optional group activities.

With workshops, talks, panels and Q&As across Saturday 23rd and Sunday 24th September, there is a packed programme of events to expand sixth formers minds, and take their learning to the next level.

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