Call for Session Topics

105th ACSA Annual Meeting 
|  Brooklyn says "Move to Detroit"
March 23-25, 2017  |  Detroit, Michigan
Co-chairs: Luis Francisco Rico-Gutierrez, Iowa State University & Martha Thorne, IE University
Host Schools: University of Detroit Mercy, Lawrence Technological University, University of Michigan, & Cranbrook Academy of Art


Call for Session Topics


ACSA and the conference co-chairs invites paper session topics related to this conference theme. Authors of session topic proposals should submit a 500 word (maximum) description of the session, suitable for blind review, and a brief author biography that demonstrates the author’s expertise in the proposal’s area of focus.

As both provocation and guidance, we pose the following questions:

Utopias are dead, long live … what? History offers heroic examples of well know visionaries “designing” alternative proposals for the future. Regardless of their degree of success, they represent a “true north” of their time. What are the utopias of the third millennium, and who are their heroes?

Not only public, but political space… by chance? Tahir square, Tiananmen square, Ferguson… The revolution is being retweeted, snapchat-ed, vine-ed and… yes, selectively televised. If physical design is also social design, what is the role of the architect in the evolution of society?

52 years after Rudofsky’s “Architecture without architects,” the question is, who cares about architects? Politicians, developers, community members… further more, who do architects care about?

S, M, L, XL firms or... no firms? In addressing the pressing challenges of the future, are current modes of practice on their way to extension? What is next in our professional eco-system?

Hi-tech, low-tech, “real”-tech? More and more, our pedagogical models revolve around the potential of digital fabrication. But, what does it mean for communities on the margins (not only physically, but economically, socially and/or culturally).

Consider the following sophism: “All architects are designers therefore all design is architecture.” More and more, we use the words architecture and design indistinctively, but are they one and the same? Is design, as a discipline, singular or plural?

How big is "Big Data?" As we approach the era of pervasive, nonbiological intelligence, or “singularity,” how can we take advantage of the incredible amount of information generated by “the internet of things.

Session Topic Submission Requirements

All authors submitting topics must be faculty, students or staff at an ACSA member school, or become supporting ACSA members at the time of submission. If you are not an ACSA member, or if you are experiencing website access issues, contact ACSA directly (202.785.2324 or for assistance.  Authors of session topic proposals submit a 500-word (maximum) description of the session and a brief author biography that demonstrates the author’s expertise in the proposal’s area of focus.

Session Topic Selection Process

All topic proposals will undergo a review process. Conference co-chairs review the ratings and comments from the external reviewers, the proposals themselves, and the biography statement supplied by the proposal author. The selection process takes into consideration the merits of the session topic proposals—the subject, premise, and scope of the proposed session topics should be clearly stated—the expertise of the session topic authors, as well as the importance of organizing a diverse set of sessions for the Annual Meeting. The conference co-chairs will select from the proposed topics and develop additional topics to create a well-rounded call for papers. Decisions on proposals will be announced in Early Summer 2016.

The authors of the selected session topics will serve as topic chairs for their respective paper sessions. Working in collaboration with the conference co-chairs and ACSA staff, topic chairs are responsible for: maintaining a blind-review process for all submitted papers; enlisting reviewers; selecting final papers for presentation; and moderating their respective sessions during the Annual Meeting. It is ACSA policy that accepted topic chairs are required to register themselves for the 105th ACSA Annual Meeting before February 2017. 

Call for Papers

The Call for Papers will list the final session topics and will be announced in Early Summer 2016. All papers will undergo a full-paper blind peer-review process. Session topic chairs will take into consideration each paper’s relevance to the topic and the evaluation furnished by the three peer reviewers. Typically, each session will include three or four presentations, with time for discussion. All papers will be submitted through an online interface and must meet the general criteria identified in the Call for Papers and in the submission guidelines. Each author will be limited to one submission per session topic. All authors submitting papers must be faculty, students, or staff at an ACSA member school, or become supporting ACSA members at the time of paper submission. Authors whose papers have been accepted for presentation will be required to register for the 105th Annual Meeting before February 2017.



March 2016
  Call for Session Topics Announced 
May 1, 2016
          Session Topic Submission Deadline 
Early Summer 2016
  Session Topic Selections
June 2015    Call for Papers Announced
September 21, 2016   Paper Submission Deadline 
November 2016
  Project/Poster Submission Deadline 



For questions please contact: 

Eric Wayne Ellis
Director of Operations and Programs


Allison Smith
Programs Manager