Themes List of Call for Panel Presenters

Notice: Abstract and Panel Submission was closed on 18 December, 2017.

The proposers for panels below are seeking colleagues who want to participate in the panel and give a presentation related to the theme. If you are interested in, please contact the proposer directly well in advance of the deadline.

And also please note that all presenters have to submit thier abstracts respectively, via “EasyChair” paper submission system.

Last update: 14 Dec 2017


Themes List

Theme: Sir Christopher Wren’s famous baroque plan for London after the Great Fire of 1666

Detail: With an eye to the conference themes of ‘harbour cities’ and ‘world history of urbanism’, I shall be submitting a proposal for a paper on Sir Christopher Wren’s famous baroque plan for London after the Great Fire of 1666. I will happily integrate this into a panel if there are other proposals relating to iconic, unimplemented plans such as Wren’s.

Proposer of the Panel: Michael Hebbert (University College London)


(6 Nov 2017)

Theme: Planning History and Megaevents: design, spaces and legacy

Detail: Megaevents such the Olympic Games and Worlds’ Fairs/Expos have had a long association with host cities going back over 160 years. Inter alia, they have provided opportunities for planning and architectural innovation, have served as important media for place promotion and city marketing, and have created large event spaces that need to be integrated into the city once the event is over. Over the last half century, there has been an increasing tendency for city managers and local growth coalitions to use these events for their own agendas and as instruments of planning, infrastructural, economic, social and promotional transformation. The popularity of staging such events has waxed and waned. Notably, the International Olympic Committee had trouble engaging with potential summer hosts at the end of the 1970s and again in the current round of bidding for 2024 and 2028. Nevertheless, we have also seen the rise of multiple hosts for the Summer Games, with London hosting on three occasions, Paris and Los Angeles due to achieve the same status in the next decade, Tokyo about to stage the Games for a second occasion and Beijing about to be the first city to stage a Summer and Winter Games. For their part, the World’s Fairs have had mixed fortunes with suggestions that their day had gone, but a series of successful Expos this century has revived interest, with the USA back to exhibiting and even signs that to American cities are toying with the idea of hosting such events once again.

Themes on which papers might be contributed include:
* growth coalitions and city promotion
* megaevents and urban spatial structure
* event spaces in strategic urban planning
* instrumental use of megaevents
* architectural and planning innovation
* multiple hosts and the emergence of the megaevent city
* megaevents and infrastructural development
* issues of tangible and intangible legacy
* megaevents, security and city design
* megaevents and urban sustainability

Contributions that offer a historical approach which is theoretically grounded and offers a comparative perspective, are particularly welcomed. Papers that deal with the experience of cities in South East Asia, are also welcomed. However, there is no restriction on the empirical focus of potential contributions.

Proposers of the Panel: John R. Gold (Oxford Brookes University) and Margaret M. Gold (London Metropolitan University)

Contact: For more information, please contact Professor John Gold at

(13 Nov 2017)

Theme: Community Based Neighborhood in Cities

Detail: Global Trends of Migrations from Small Town to Big Cities as well as from developing countries to Developed countries cause Community based neighbourhoods as urban island in any Metropolis of world. China Town, Little India, Jews Colony are name of few.
The characteristics that make a city neighbourhood great are by no means restricted to upscale developments. Indeed, sometimes older, low- or moderate-income neighbourhoods exhibit greater continuity and stronger bonds – a stronger sense of what we call ‘community’ – than do those with higher incomes. As a result, they can sometimes be the source of extraordinary achievement in urban revitalization.
Successful neighbourhood development depends not only on local actions, but also on the ability of local groups to marshal resources and political will at levels above that of the neighbourhood itself. While it is need to support community-based initiatives, that there are limits to what can be accomplished exclusively at the grass roots level, where most efforts fail. Proposed Panel is to have case studies of such community-based neighbourhoods in various cities of different continents and its pros and cons. How better urban planning towards community based neighbourhoods and its integrations in City can act as catalyst for City and National developments.
Panel will explore the promise and limits of bottom-up, grass-roots strategies of community organizing, development, and planning as blueprints for successful revitalization and maintenance of urban neighbourhoods.

Proposer: Rajendra Kumar (Architect Rajendra Kumar & Associates, New Delhi, India)


(15 Nov 2017)

Theme: Critical Junctures of Institutional Transformation: Developing theory and research methods for planning history

Detail: Social, political, and economic change occurs in ruptures in which previously relatively stable structures are replaced with new approaches. Historical institutionalists refer to these turning points as critical junctures. Berins Collier and Collier (1991: 29) proposed what is still a widely cited definition: “A critical juncture may be defined as period of significant change, which typically occurs in distinct ways in different countries (or in other units of analysis) and which is hypothesized to produce distinct legacies.” The suggestion is not that all change occurs in this way, as processes of incremental revision and adjustment are also important. But if critical junctures produce enduring and distinct new developmental pathways, these periods are an important topic for theory-building and research. Planning history offers many examples of such relatively short periods of significant change that produced lasting outcomes.
The study of critical junctures has been a major theme of comparative historical analysis and historical institutionalism for a quarter century, and a significant literature on critical junctures has developed in recent decades. This research has contributed to the development of robust conceptual frameworks detailing the structure and implications of such change processes, as well as the development of associated research methods, particularly for comparative historical analysis. It seems likely also that planning and local governance processes have some distinctive types of critical juncture, compared to national governance processes, such as post-disaster recovery, environmental shocks, or new planning laws or mandates imposed by senior levels of government.
I would like to propose a sub-topic within the conference theme: ‘Concept and methodology of global/world planning history’ devoted to the development of theory, methods and case studies associated with critical junctures in planning history. Anyone interested please contact me.

Proposer: Andre Sorensen (University of Toronto)


(21 Nov 2017)


Detail: Carola Hein (TU Delft) and Yanchen Sun (Tianjin University) are looking for participants who are examining treaty ports in Asia and planning networks that link them. In this context, the treaty ports are port cities in Asia that were opened to foreign trade and residence. Examples could include Yokohama, Kobe, Shanghai, Tianjin, Busan, Incheon, etc. These treaty ports acted as doors through which foreign powers introduced Western planing ideas into these Asia countries, and test grounds for these new ideas. Besides, there existed planning ideas circulation among the treaty ports led by foreign powers. The planning networks of these treaty ports during the colonial periods had profound impact on local planning practice of these cities.
We are specifically interested in questions such as:
. How did foreign powers introduced and/or implemented Western planning ideas into treaty ports in Asia?
. How did these planing ideas influence local planning practice?
. How did the planning networks work among the treaty ports and promote the the cross-cultural exchange of planning ideas in Asia?

Proposers: Please contact Carola Hein or Yanchen Sun to join this panel.

(27 Nov 2017)

Theme: Diverse Planning Cultures and Traditions on the Way to a Flood Resilient City <title correction>

Detail: Climate change will have a severe and inevitable impact upon the flood risk of global coastal cities. Even if there are some notable achievements in substantially reducing its causes and mitigating its effects, the vulnerability of infrastructure, people, nature and economic activity is expected to increase in the decades to come. To face the challenges brought by this uncertain future, notions such as resilience, adaptability, climate-proofing, urban climate adaptation became widely picked up by planners worldwide and do exert an influence on planning practice and the urban form and functions. On the national level too, policies, spatial plans and documents dealing with climate change impacts sprout up, for instance, UK Climate Impacts Programme (UKCIP) in Britain, Climate changes Spatial Planning (CcSP) in the Netherlands, or the Sponge City Program in China. The trend also manifests itself in transnational networking between cities, with the emergence of organisations such as C40 Cities, partners with UN-Habitat on Urban Resilience. These on-going changes challenge the established planning paradigms in spatial planning and urban design.

However, incorporating those new items and ideas into local agendas and practice is hampered by numerous governance, institutional, ideational, financial, technical or political obstacles. Any planning and design process operates under specific frameworks, regulations and traditions, guided by country- or place-specific rules and perceptions rooted in the unique social and economic context and planning cultures.

The panel aims to compare differentiated urban situations in which the pre-existing planning cultures and traditions are clashing with or being reshaped by the struggle to adapt to the changing climate. The goal is thus to enhance the understanding of how those context-dependent components of planning culture shape the ability of cities to mitigate the negative impacts of climate change through planning and urban design actions. Conversely, the panel will also seek to explore which features of local planning cultures can be harnessed to make the cities more resilient to those impacts and to what extent one could work around or with those that are the most problematic for achieving this goal. For this exploration, a consideration of the historical evolution of planning and design practice, particularly in relation to management of water, is essential, particularly for a better understanding the barriers and opportunities for climate adaptation strategies and their implementation. In other words, in this panel, we focus our attention on ‘yesterday’ and seek the potentiality for ‘tomorrow’.

Proposers: Meng Meng and Marcin Dąbrowski (TU Delft)


* The Public Relations Committee apologize that the previous title of this call was incorrectly released.

(updated 10 Dec 2017)

Theme: Waterfront Revitalization – Learning from the Past for the Future

Detail: Meanwhile there is nearly half a century of experience for regeneration of urban waterfronts. The history of port city relations and the process of transformation of ports and waterfronts, which began after World War II, can only be understood in the context of worldwide economic restructuring, of changes in dock labour and the urban spatial framework of city and port. The history of waterfront planning and projects after the Second World War can be described as a sequence of deindustrialisation processes and the global containerisation of goods handling, starting in North America and then moving on to western Europe and eventually Japan and Asia. The shift of major shipbuilding centres from Europe and North America to Asia resulted in wastelands close to city centres. Cargo containerisation and the introduction of ever-larger ships required ever-greater water depths to allow these ships to navigate. On land, larger areas were needed to store the containers than were available in the older port areas. This created areas for new uses as well as previously unfamiliar planning tasks in the port districts close to city centres that entailed conversion and transformation of these areas by means of reintegration into the (inner) city structure.
Initial transformations were largely unplanned and based on private investment decisions but starting in the 1960s in North America and the 1970s in northern Europe, new uses for the waterside land became subject to planning. The literature that emerged subsequently tended to present individual projects, often with “before” and “after” comparisons. These descriptions usually appeared in architectural magazines and regularly included plans that were never realised.
New developments such as the boom in cruise shipping, new issues including resilience and smart cities and smart ports, as well as new methods and approaches such as actor-network theory and path dependence provide relevant future topics of planning history with a comparative and interdisciplinary perspective.
Papers with a comparative perspective on seaports are very welcome, as well as papers on new research methods or papers focusing on one case study with a historical perspective and cycles of transformations. Also papers on actors, local-global interdependencies, governance, sustainability, resilience, plans and planning cultures are acceptable.

Proposer: Dirk Schubert (HafenCity Universität Hamburg)


(7 Dec 2017)

Theme: The Anglo-American City Imperial (2) 

Detail: British and American imperialism (albeit in the latter instance, for some, more comfortably regarded as colonialism) are most often perceived as parallel, if not wholly separate enterprises. Yet within the context of imperial city building this study argues that there was a rich design dialogue/cross-fertilization between, firstly, the British and American planning projects and, secondly, between the colonizers and colonized populations. Thus Daniel Burnham’s ‘imperialization’ of Washington, DC and his plan to restructure Manila informed Herbert Baker’s vision for South Africa and later, along with Edwin Lutyens, India. Similarly indebted to Burnham, Walter Burley Griffin’s Canberra was another informant for the British Raj. However, of significance too, a nativization of imperial planning models transpired: in the Philippines, for instance, US-educated Filipino architects took up Burnham’s City Beautiful paradigm and, thanks to adding local references, produced a hybrid design form. Accordingly the proposed session seeks to examine the agents acting upon the form and meaning of urban design within the British and American imperial contexts, and the channels too through which their planning concepts and practices were proliferated and interrelated. In so doing the papers will highlight the nature of discourse between the Anglo-American planning models, and their subsequent taking up by colonial subjects.

Proposer: Ian Morley (Chinese University of Hong Kong)


(7 Dec 2017)

Theme: Urban density and urban forms – City planning from the scratch

Detail: Although long discredited, Modernism remains critical to current discourses in urbanism. In its radical reimagining of the city, modern urbanism encouraged a historical break with the 19th-century city and 19th-century urban planning practices. Since the 1970s, however, planners have rejected its faith in progress and reembraced pre- and early modern traditions. This has given rise to a radical counter-movement encompassing the New Urbanism and Traditional Neighborhood Development, which attempt to cope with urban problems in part by rejecting Modernism and its imagery in favor of superficial historical references.

Modern urbanism, in many respects, emerged at the turn of the last century as a response to a perceived decline in the quality or urban space resulting from overuse of metropolitan areas caused, in turn, by speculative real estate development. To counter this decline — including problems like poor public health and traffic congestion — many architects and other urban reformers embraced an ethos of low density settlement, which became one of the core tenets of Modernism. Yet as cities were remade along Modernist lines, low densities generated new problems and became subject of critique, prompting the neotraditional backlash. Corresponding current projects – often designed by European planners – can be found especially in China.

A Hegelian conception of history raises the question of whether there might be a more convincing and effective synthesis between these two modes — one that combines urban density with the high quality of life envisioned, and sometimes delivered, by Modernism. In this regard we consider it fruitful to revisit the moment of transition from the laissez-faire of the premodern Era to the Modernism of the interwar and postwar periods.

This panel session, then, revisits urban development in the early decades of the 20th century in theory and practice, in Europe and Overseas, seeking to comprehend the relation between urban density and “urban quality,” and to interrogate the planning processes that led to new typological and morphological urban expressions, both low-density and high, as Modernism was articulated and popularized.

This analysis should be carried out through case studies that interrogate how planners in different kinds of metropolitan contexts negotiated the balance between density and quality. Planning urban density from the scratch is particularly in Asia a crucial and current topic.

Proposer: Michael Locher (Berne University for Applied Sciences)


(13 Dec 2017)

Theme: LOOKING AT LATIN AMERICA’S EARLY PLANNING HISTORY Pioneers and Professional Knowledge (1880-1930) 

Detail: A milestone in Latin America’s planning history was its cristalization through the creation of specialized institutions, regulations, and the first programmes of studies in the region, from the 1920s onwards. Crucial in the emergence of this new discipline was the role of professionals of different backgrounds, such as engineers, architects and doctors, who were involved in the proposals of urban initiatives while provided the debates with specific knowledge.

This panel aims to reflect about the role that pioneeers and professionals played in the transit when urban planning turned into a discipline in Latin America. To approach to the practice and debates of these profesional circles, congresses, journals, bulletins and other profesional publications, appear as valuable sources. These sources might provide new dimensions of the issues that interested the discipline in its former period and of how these circles contributed to form a disciplinar languaje. Appart from paying attention on the urban fabric and circulation problems, health and social housing issues were key in those discussions.

In this way, a common theme of the panel is to explore how the professional circles were already using their specific channels to push the urban issues as a public and a profesional activity.

Proposer: macarena carolina ibarra alonso (Pontificia Universidad Católica de Chile)


(14 Dec 2017)

*If you want to add another idea for panel theme, please see “How can I find colleagues for my panel?”.