get involved

how to contribute

We want you to participate in our festival by attending an event, joining a webcast, contributing to the online discussion, and/or sharing your ideas and feedback on our website and via your own networks.

We are happy to connect with you on your social media platforms and cross-promote, so:

During festival week please email us highlights of the events you saw so that we can keep people informed about your feedback via the festival website and our social media accounts.

You can follow our activities at and on Twitter @ImagineBelfast. When tweeting, please use the hashtag #ImagineBelfast in your tweets. If you have an Instagram account and are uploading images related to the festival, please also include #ImagineBelfast.

It would be great if you can include the website address and the hashtag #ImagineBelfast in all your communications about the festival.

The festival’s strapline is ‘The Belfast Festival of Ideas & Politics’. Please try to use this strapline on your social media content promoting your involvement with the festival.

Take part in our festival

Every October we issue a Call for Events when we ask people to come up with ideas for an event and to apply to present it as part of the festival. We want to encourage the participation of under-represented groups in political and cultural debate and to stimulate debate on issues that are often excluded from our local political discourse.

The Call for Ideas is therefore intended to give the whole community a part in shaping the festival, from suggesting speakers to directly creating and delivering events.  Although we can’t run with every proposal, we promise to look seriously at every suggestion and come back to you with a reasoned response.

What are we looking for?

We are open to all suggestions and adopt an expansive interpretation of the terms ‘ideas’ and ‘politics’ especially if your proposal is an imaginative and provocative event. Our past contributors include a wide range of individuals and organisations including community groups, colleges, artists, arts organisations, businesses, cultural groups, charities etc.

You may have an idea for an event around a particular issue or format – perhaps a debate, cafe discussion, a performance, exhibition, workshop or kids offering. However, your proposed event has to be engaging and accessible for the wider community, and deliverable from a logistical, health & safety, and financial point of view.

We can help find you a venue and take care of marketing and ticketing etc. We also have a small amount of funding to support events and activities.

We would prefer if your proposal is original and not a repeat event. We are unable to accept applications from political parties and successful event applications need to adhere to the values of the festival. All events must take place during our festival period in March either as public events in Belfast and/or online and should be as accessible as possible, preferably free. Events should also be creative and imaginative with your audience encouraged to participate in debate and discussion.  

We can provide further information and advice on these guidelines as required. For inspiration about possible events, check out our previous festivals in our history website pages. Look out for the Call for Events every autumn when publicised in our newsletter and social media posts and help us deliver this unique festival.


We would encourage you to write a blog post about your involvement in the festival for publication on this site and/or any blog you have access to. Please notify us in advance of the publication of any blog posts, so that we can cross-promote them on our website and social media platforms.

Submitting your blog post to us: You are very welcome to submit a blog post for the festival blog, although we reserve the right to review and edit it for length.

What can I blog about? You can publish different styles of blog posts. For instance, you can publish a factual account of your attendance at an event or you can share more reflective content to highlight the importance of a particular theme you are interested or a discussion of relevant trends. This is an excellent opportunity for aspiring journalists which we are happy to facilitate.

Check out the Imagine! blog here.

support imagine!

In this climate of austerity, it’s difficult to secure public funding for our work. We try to make our programme as accessible as possible to the public at large and yet pay our performers a decent fee. We work hard to ensure that almost all of our events are free – so if you feel like making a donation (no matter how small), please use this secure payment system provided by Local Giving. We’re a registered charity with low administration costs.

In this climate of austerity, it’s difficult to secure public funding for our work – so if you feel like making a donation (no matter how small), you can do so on our Local Giving page. Thank you!

We’ll be in touch.