Past Events

We pride ourselves on the variety of subjects discussed and the following is a chronological list of the events we have hosted. For more information or if you have any ideas for debates and events, please do not hesitate to contact us.

Does Trump have a point?

Monday 24 October at 7.30pm – Keynes Hall, King’s College Cambridge

With the controversial outsider candidate, Donald Trump, presenting a credible chance at winning the upcoming US elections, King’s Politics asks “Does Trump have a point?”


Freddy Gray — Deputy Editor of the The Spectator. He was formerly literary editor of The American Conservative.

Dr Paul Sagar — Fellow in Politics at King’s. He is currently writing a book on the theory of the state and the concept of human sociability in the Enlightenment.

Professor Helen Thompson — Professor in Political Economy. She has written on British economic policy, the relationship of democracy to the international economy, and the politics of the economic relationship between the United States and China.

Dr Christopher Brooke — Fellow in Politics at Homerton. He is currently writing a history of distributive political theory since c. 1700.

Viscount Monckton — Journalist and Peer. He is known for his work as a journalist, Conservative political advisor, UKIP political candidate, and for his invention of the mathematical puzzle Eternity.

Is organised religion a force for good?

Monday 25 April at 7.45pm – Keynes Hall, King’s College Cambridge

As ongoing religious and sectarian conflict rages across the globe, King’s Politics asks the question: ‘Is organised religion a force for good?’


Peter Hitchens – journalist and commentator

Sarah Coakley – Norris-Hulse Professor of Divinity at the University of Cambridge

Andrew Copson – Chief Executive of the British Humanist Association

Stephen Cherry – Dean of King’s College and author

Is Lad Culture ever ‘just banter’?

Monday 15 February at 7.30pm – Keynes Hall, King’s College Cambridge

Following a government-led inquiry into ‘Lad Culture’ on British university campuses, King’s Politics asks whether, in the immortal words of former Sky Sports presenter Richard Keys, it ever is ‘just banter’.


Mimi Turner – Marketing Director of the Lad Bible

Dr Katharine Jenkins – fellow at the University of Cambridge researching the Philosophy of Sex and Gender

Amy Clark – former LGBT+ Officer at King’s College Students’ Union and representative on the Women’s Campaign Executive

Ella Whelan – staff writer at Spiked! magazine and Spectator contributor

Is the West to blame for ISIS?

Monday 25 January 2016 at 7.30pm – Keynes Hall, King’s College Cambridge

With the emergence of ISIS as a major military and political entity in the Syrian Civil War and Iraq, King’s Politics asks whether the legacy of Western intervention and foreign policy is to blame for its rise.


Andrew Murray – Chair of the Stop the War Coalition

Adam Deen – head of Outreach and Research at the Quilliam Foundation, and former member of Al-Muhajiroun

James Bloodworth – commentator and former editor of Left Foot Forward

Victoria Stewart-Jolley – PhD candidate at the University of Cambridge and legal and electoral specialist, with experience working with the UN in Afghanistan and Iraq

Allan Hennessy – law student at the University of Cambridge and journalist

Chapel Debate

What are the economic possibilities for our grandchildren?

Monday 16 November at 7.30pm – King’s College Chapel

In 1930, John Maynard Keynes, a King’s alumnus, published a short essay on the “Economic Possibilities for our Grandchildren” in which he spoke about his expectations for the next hundred years. We analyse whether he remains relevant in the modern day and how many of his predictions came true.


Lord Robert Skidelsky – economist and author of an award-winning, three-volume Keynes biography

Professor Sir Partha Dasgupta – Emeritus Professor of Economics at the University of Cambridge

Professor Andrew Gamble – professor of Politics at the University of Cambridge

Ann Pettifor – Director of Policy Research in Macroeconomics, fellow at the New Economics Foundation, and economic adviser to Labour leader, Jeremy Corbyn

Is the Euro a failure?

Monday 19 October 2015 at 7.45pm – Keynes Hall, King’s College Cambridge

We have seen the Eurozone crisis evolve over the past few years, bringing many European countries to their knees but having once been seen as a promising initiative. We ask whether the Euro project has ultimately collapsed.


Graham Stringer – Labour MP and Vote Leave campaigner

Natalie Nougayrède – political commentator for the Guardian and former Executive Editor of Le Monde

Professor Leila Simona Talani – Professor of International Political Economy at King’s College London

Professor John Ryan – research associate at the Von Hügel Institute of St Edmund’s College Cambridge

The Turing Debate

Can liberty survive in the information age?

Tuesday 16 June 2015 at 7.30pm – King’s College Chapel

Our first Chapel 500th debate took place in the stunning chapel of King’s College on the question, “Can liberty survive in the information age?”


BARON REES OF LUDLOW – Emeritus professor of cosmology and astrophysics at Cambridge and the UK’s Astronomer Royal

CHARLES CLARKE – Former Home Secretary and Labour MP

EBEN UPTON – Co-Founder of the Raspberry Pi, which has sold over 5 million units across the world, making the fastest-selling British personal computer

JODIE GINSBERG – Chief Executive of Index on Censorship, former Reuters UK Bureau Chief

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Question Time at King’s: EU

Monday 12 May 2015 at 7pm – Keynes Hall, King’s College Cambridge

Press: TCS | Tab | King’s web
Twitter feed: #KingsEU

UKIP, Labour, the Greens, Liberal Democrats and Tories battled it out to decide who will lead Eastern England on 22 May. Things got heated quickly – the UKIP candidate compared the Greens’ representative to “fascist Germany” after the latter heckled his opening speech, and insults flew back and forth for the rest of the debate.

The hustings followed a ‘Question Time’ format, with audience questions determining the focus of the debate. The discussion was centred around topics of immigration and asylum seekers, overfishing, the EU and employment, clean energy and, of course, the prospect of Britain leaving the EU. 


Andrew Duff MEP – lead candidate for the Liberal Democrats

Tom Hunt – 5th candidate for the Conservatives

Mark Hughes – 7th candidate for UKIP

Sandy Martin – 3rd candidate for labour

Rupert Read – lead candidate for the Greens

Question Time at King’s: City Council

Friday 16 May 2015 at 7pm – Keynes Hall, King’s College Cambridge

Press/Blogs: A Dragon’s Best Friend | King’s web | TCS
Twitter feed: #KingsQT

#KingsQT trending in Cambridge


Rod Cantrill – current City Councillor and candidate for the Liberal Democrat Party (Newnham Ward)

Anthony Carpen (and Puffles) – independent City Councillor candidate (Coleridge Ward)

Nick Clarke – Cambridge City Conservative Party Association Chairman and former leader of the County Council 

Matt Hodgkinson – City Councillor candidate for the Green Party (Petersfield Ward)

Sam Wolfe – City Councillor candidate for the Labour Party (Newnham Ward)

Israel/Palestine: How can peace be made?

Monday 9 February 2015 – Keynes Hall, King’s College Cambridge

Atrocities can be attributed to multiple sides, countless diplomatic negotiations have failed and still the conflict continues. King’s Politics asks if and how peace can be made.


Professor Alan Johnson – Editor of the Fathom Journal and Co-Founder of Labour Friends of Israel

Paul Charney – Chair of the Zionist Association of Great Britain and Ireland

Professor Kamel Hawwash – Vice Chair of the Palestine Solidarity Campaign

Hannah Weisfeld – founder and director of the ‘pro-Israel, pro-peace’ Yachad

Rachel Shabi – award-winning journalist and commentator

Birju Dattani – teaching fellow at the Centre for Palestine Studies in SOAS

Does Cambridge University fail to protect the welfare of its students?

Monday 23 January 2015 – Keynes Hall, King’s College Cambridge

Is Cambridge in need of a reading week? Does it exacerbate or help mental heath issues? What should be the purpose of a university? King’s Politics brings these questions together in an enthralling and lively debate.


Daisy Hughes – founding member of Whose University?

Dr Rosanna Omitowoju – Admissions Tutor at King’s College Cambridge and Director of Studies in Classics

Dr Paul Sagar – fellow in Politics and International Relations and undergraduate supervisor

Does Britain need more positive discrimination?

Monday 24 November 2014 – Keynes Hall, King’s College Cambridge

Across Britain and the rest of the world, top positions in industry and government continue to be dominated by white, middle class men, towards whom the current system remains heavily skewed. We ask if positive discrimination is the only way forward.


Sunny Hundal – left-wing commentator and editor of the Liberal Conspiracy

Amelia Womack – Deputy Leader of the Green Party

Ian Dunt – Editor of and Political Analyst for Yahoo UK

Ann Francke – CEO of the Chartered Management Institute

Can military intervention be humanitarian?

Monday 3 November 2014 – Lady Mitchell Hall, University of Cambridge

Do we have a responsibility to use military force to save strangers? Do we have the right to be the world’s policemen? Can force succeed in protecting the vulnerable?


Peter Hitchens – commentator and journalist

Lindsey German – Convenor of the Stop the War Coalition and organiser of the 2003 Iraq War demonstration

Darren Murphy – former political communications adviser to Tony Blair and political strategist for a number of leaders worldwide

Nigel Biggar – Professor of Moral Theology at Oxford University

Richard Norton-Taylor – journalist and former Security Editor at the Guardian

David Blunt – fellow at Corpus Christi College Cambridge in International Relations

Are faith schools detrimental to society?

Monday 13 October 2014 – Keynes Hall, King’s College Cambridge

Championed by Tony Blair and expanded through the Free School programme of the Cameron Government but damaged in several scandals, King’s Politics questions whether faith schools are of detriment to society.


Brendan O’Neill – Editor of Spiked! Online magazine

Keith Porteous Wood – Executive Director of the National Secular Society

Freddy Gray – Managing Editor of the Spectator

Richy Thompson – Campaigns Officer (Faith Schools and Education) of the British Humanist Association