The Sanford School of Public Policy has a limited number of rooms available for use by the Duke community, and by those who serve the Duke community. We prioritize space for public policy faculty, staff and students as well as our affiliated research centers and programs. For non-Sanford and non-Duke requestors, space rental fees will apply.


Large Event Space 

Fleishman Commons (or 772501) and the adjacent lobby (7725LOB) can be requested to hold large public lectures and receptions. Permission to use these spaces will only be granted if the event is well aligned with the Sanford School mission.

Conference/Board Rooms 

(Rubenstein Hall 7739200; Sanford 7725223) The Conference/Board Rooms may be reserved by non-Sanford groups up to three months before the event, but not further in advance.   


(Rubenstein Hall: 7739149, 7739151, 7739153; Sanford 772503, 772504, 772505, 7725102, 7725150, 7725224, and 7725225) These rooms are generally too restrictive for special events. In general, our non-Sanford guests will not be able to reserve classroom spaces during the academic year until 10 business days after the start of the fall and spring terms. 

Small Meeting Rooms 

These are used only by internal groups.

Fleishman Commons

The Fleishman Commons is Sanford’s “living room.” Located in the center of the Sanford Building, the atrium is a meeting spot for students, faculty and staff; a dining room for the adjacent Saladelia Café; and a high-traffic thoroughfare for the students entering and exiting classrooms 03, 04, 05, 07 and 09.

As an event venue, Fleishman Commons can seat 64 guests on the floor with an additional 80 in the 10 “pods” along the staircases. Due to technical and lighting constraints, the use of visual digital presentations is prohibited. The lobby on the first floor is often used for a pre- or post-event receptions.

The use of the Fleishman Commons as an event space is relies on the topic being a good match for the Sanford community and is also dependent on the class schedule and on other events already scheduled in the adjacent classrooms. The three adjacent classrooms may sometimes accommodate additional seating through the set-up of a simulcast, requiring ushers and an overflow seating plan.

The events and resources coordinator works with individual event planners to coordinate the services and resources for events in the Commons including contracting movers, ushers, AV services, and after-hours door access.

All events presented in the Fleishman Commons must be co-sponsored by the Sanford School which requires collaboration with the Sanford communications office on the following: a media release, a marketing and promotion purchase plan, promotional or public relations piece approvals. The Sanford School of Public Policy will be listed as a co-sponsor, with our logo on the promotional materials. We provide the stage, backdrop, chairs and podium.

We welcome invitations to partner with groups from around the university on events in our buildings. Because events in the Fleishman Commons require Sanford staff support, which are associated with the school, and disrupt the daily use of the Commons and sometimes also of adjacent classrooms, the school has adopted the following criteria in order to ensure that events in this space are high quality and are a good match for our community.

  • The event must have thematic or topical connection to Sanford School of Public Policy’s research expertise and/or curriculum and must have a Sanford faculty sponsor or host.
  • The budget must include at least $2500 for event production expenses (e.g. stage, movers, pipe and drape, housekeeping, hired ushers, parking and AV support.)
  • There must also be sufficient funding for professional promotion, such as graphic design, ad buys, poster and more (estimated around $1,500.) The promotion plan must be developed in collaboration with the communications office.
  • For non-Sanford and non-Duke requestors, space rental fees will apply. A quote will be outlined and shared prior to the approved 25Live confirmation.

All requests should be in writing and address the criteria listed above. Please include a program agenda and fund code. E-mail us at

Contact Us

Note: the Dean of the Sanford School reserves the right to refuse the rental or use of the space, or if overriding necessity dictates, to bump confirmed reservations to accommodate an event of major importance to the school. By requesting to use space in the Sanford Building or Rubenstein Hall, you agree to read your confirmation, and follow all room use directives.

25 Live Space Booking