Theme 1: The Design of Space and Place

Addresses the ways in which human settlements and the built environment is conceptualized, plans represented, and competing interests negotiated.

  • Design disciplines and practices: architecture, engineering, industrial design, landscape architecture
  • Settlement disciplines and practices: planning, human geography
  • Science in the service of technology
  • Information, design, modeling and geospatial technologies
  • Urban and regional planning
  • Local government in the planning process
  • Transportation modes and structures: reconfiguring flows
  • Parks and recreation in urban spaces
  • Designing interior spaces
  • Information flows in the constructed environment
  • ‘Virtual’ space and ‘real’ space
  • Place and identity
  • Form and function in space: how aesthetics relates to function
  • Project planning
  • Inclusive design: design for human needs, sensitive to human differences, affirming rights to access
  • Involving stakeholders: participatory design
  • Consultation, negotiation and consensus building in the (re)design of the constructed environment.
  • Aesthetic paradigms: classicism, modernism, postmodernism, constructivism and other ‘isms

Theme 2: Constructing the Environment

Examining the processes of constructing buildings and creating landscapes.

  • Urban impacts
  • Building construction
  • Landscape construction
  • Spaces and sites of construction: urban, greenfield, rural, remote
  • From design studio to construction site: design and project planning
  • Project management processes and practices
  • Construction activities, processes and flows
  • Time cycles, process transparency, quality management and efficiencies
  • Efficiencies: prefabrication and modularization
  • The construction of access to wild spaces
  • Building and construction regulation

Theme 3: Environmental Impacts

Exploring questions of sustainability in the constructed environment.

  • Materials, construction and environmental sciences
  • Helping structures change, grow or end their useable lives—adaptations, renovations and recycling
  • Green construction, sustainable building practices
  • LEED and other environmental certifications
  • Energy sources and destinations: reconfiguring grids
  • Water needs and sources: refiguring demand and access
  • Natural movements: floods, droughts, earthquakes and other acts of nature
  • Waste creation, transportation and recycling or disposal
  • Determining footprints: environmental impact analyses

Theme 4: Social Impacts

Investigating the social life of constructed environments.

  • Social and material flows
  • Functions of construction: housing, commercial, public, community
  • Habitats: home, work, civic, business, natural
  • Spatial cultures: the ethnography of space
  • Cultural diversity and the built environment
  • Globalization and its environmental impacts
  • Gender and the built environment
  • Disabilities and corporeal differences in the built environment
  • Heritage values and practices in design, architecture and construction
  • Addressing inequality and poverty in the built environment
  • The global and the local: applying human and material resources
  • Values, ethics and aesthetics in environmental decision making
  • Leadership and management in the human geographies and the constructed environment
  • Education and training for workers in the constructed environment
  • Values and ethics in human and natural environments
  • Research and evaluation methods in human geographies and constructed environments
  • Law and regulation in and for the constructed and natural environments
  • Human resources and workforces in the building and environment sectors
  • Needs assessment and analysis
  • Social impact analyses