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Festival of Compassion

Join us for the Exeter Festival of Compassion

Following a truly unprecedented year, now more than ever the value of compassion to our lives, institutions, and communities has been amply demonstrated.

We are bringing together academics, practitioners, campaigners, and activists, working in a number of fields, for a festival on compassion in its broadest sense, to coincide with the celebration of this year’s ‘World Compassion Day’.


19–28 November 2021

Get involved
If you'd like to know more or get involved please contact the Festival of Compassion team at

The Festival of Compassion is a university-based event which will consolidate and present some of the key current thinking related to compassion, and offers practical suggestions about how to actively implement compassion for wellbeing both in university and in life beyond it.

Join us for activities online, on campus and in the city of Exeter to listen to engaging talks from renowned experts and participate in ‘taster’ sessions with practitioners, including: art; yoga; music; photography; therapy; spiritualism; guided nature walks, and much more.


We are taking an interdisciplinary approach to presenting some of the important issues and dichotomies related to compassion, by charting a path between scientific, philosophical and alternative views on compassion and wellness. Within several Festival Themes or “Tents” we will address compassion and self, compassion in education, compassion and community, and compassion through play.

Practically, the Festival of Compassion will host a mix of online/hybrid and face-to-face activities (e.g. roundtable discussion), workshops (e.g. mindful meditation) and invited speakers – subjects and talks may include: 

  • General wellbeing
  • Aging, disease and death
  • Student & staff wellbeing
  • Compassionate campus
  • Refugees & Violence
  • Compassionate Cities
  • Playful acts of kindness
  • Playful compassion

The Exeter Festival of Compassion is a great way to support University of Exeter staff and students as well as the local community, and to engage with the University of Exeter, an institution of global standing and a major South West employer.  

To get involved or find out more please contact the Festival of Compassion team at

The Festival of Compassion is subject to the latest Government regulations and guidelines relating to COVID-19 and our first priority is keeping all of us safe whilst on campus/location. Should Government regulations or guidance change, meaning it is not possible for the face to face events to go ahead, we will advise you as soon as possible and publish a revised programme with the online events.