Volunteering at the Battle of Ideas festival 2023


The Battle of Ideas festival is the Academy of Ideas’s annual headline event. With thousands of attendees, hundreds of speakers and over a hundred debates over two days, we need a team of enthusiastic and committed volunteers to support us for the Battle of Ideas festival 2023.

There is no age limit or qualification requirements for volunteering with us – you just have to have a passion for free speech and public debate!

“There is such a great atmosphere at the Battle of Ideas. Buzzing with conversation and excitable ideas, I always leave with a great feeling of pride that I have been a part of making it happen!”

Kelvin Hall Battle of Ideas festival lead volunteer

So what do our volunteers do?…

We cannot guarantee a position in the role you apply for, but we will try our best to find a suitable role that best matches your skill set.

We need teams of people to help with:

Registration Desk
With lots of high-profile speakers, guests, volunteers and attendees arriving throughout the weekend, there are lots of people who require help and support. You will be there to give them information, register their attendance and support them in finding their contacts.

Event stewards are key to the smooth running of the debates. In working with your room team and venue staff, you will need to ensure that debates are ready to go, work with the chair to ensure that debates do not overrun and provide microphone support so that everyone’s contribution can be heard. With this role, you get the additional benefit of seeing lots of the festival’s debates!

In addition, experienced Battle of Ideas festival volunteers can apply for the following roles:

Zone coordinator
In this role you will be working closely with the core team, and team leaders, to make sure that everything is running smoothly on your floor. With such a big event running in lots of rooms across six floors, it can be difficult to respond quickly to problems that arise, so floor co-ordinators have a huge responsibility here.


“Every time I volunteer at the Battle of Ideas I learn so much! I know way more now about what goes in to organising a festival, and the central team of organisers and volunteers are always there to help you out if you need them.”

Rose Davis Battle of Ideas festival volunteer

Why should you volunteer?…

Battle of Ideas festival volunteers have access to:

Behind-the-scenes access to the Battle of Ideas festival

Meeting and debating with like-minded people

Gaining experience of working in a fast-paced environment with a customer focus

Developing teamwork and organisation skills – great for your CV!

Additional opportunities in advance for marketing experience, press work and research

“Volunteering at the Battle of Ideas is so interesting! You get the chance to ask loads of questions and make contributions to fascinating, current topics. Everyone is really friendly and I’ve met so many influential speakers and attendees.”

Lauren Lloyd Battle of Ideas festival volunteer


If you have any questions, please don’t hesitate to get in contact with volunteers coordinator

Ella Whelan at ellawhelan@academyofideas.org.uk