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Context – Suggest a theme

Front cover Context

Context – the latest edition

The themes for forthcoming editions of Context, the journal of the Institute of Historic Building Conservation (IHBC) Context, are regularly published on the Context page of the IHBC web site.

The theme of each issue takes the form of three or four main articles and allows us to look in detail at a conservation issue or building type

Themed issues of Context also include more general conservation articles as well as news, book reviews and reports from IHBC’s officers.

If you have any suggestions for articles or other material contact Fiona Newton at: editorial@ihbc.org.uk

Research on improving equality, diversity and the inclusion of the LGBT+ community within the construction industry

I am a postgraduate student at the University of Portsmouth currently studying an MSc in Construction Project Management. As part of my dissertation I would like to invite you to take part in my research study on whether more can be done to improve equality for the LGBT+ community, working within the construction industry.

The questions are based upon a previous survey undertaken by the Construction News in 2015 and I am seeking to evaluate whether improvements have been made in the last 5 years, and what more could be done to enhance inclusion in terms of polices and schemes.

This survey will take no more than 10 minutes to complete.

There are no right or wrong answers, I am just keen to understand your experiences within the industry, so please be honest.

Data protection: Please be assured that your answers are confidential. You will not be personally identifiable in any reports or other outputs produced as a result of this research. Nothing will be attributed back to you personally and your personal data will never be shared without your prior consent. Any personal data, which identifies you, such as email addresses will only form part of the raw data seen by the researcher. This will be stored securely and anonymised prior to use in any further reports or outputs.

Find the survey here.

Research on Hemp-Lime in Historic Buildings

Research carried out by a postgraduate student at the University of York, on the Conservation Studies (Historic Buildings) MA programme, and a student member of the IHBC. As part of my dissertation research project I am kindly asking practitioners, architects, conservation officers, and those working for UK built heritage organisations, amenity societies or government bodies involved in the conservation of historic buildings, to complete a very short (12-13 question) online survey on the use of hemp-lime mixes (hempcrete) in historic (pre-1919) buildings.

It doesn’t matter if you have been involved with a historic building project involving hemp-lime before, responses will still be extremely valuable. There is one survey link for heritage organisations, another for architects and practitioners, and another for conservation officers – it’s essentially the same questionnaire but I need to keep the three groups separate for the purpose of my analysis. Here are the 3 links:

Heritage Organisations: https://forms.gle/5PxrVrxPautY5JBj8  

Practitioners/Architects: https://forms.gle/TGJiWuftmaNYicgd7

Conservation Officers:  https://forms.gle/Whnies3N5q8DnUj99 

Georgian London Revisited

CfP: Georgian London Revisited

Event date: 7 November 2020

Location: Society of Antiquaries, London

The Georgian Group is organising a day-long symposium on ‘Georgian London Revisited’, to be held at the Society of Antiquaries at Burlington House, London, on Saturday 7 November 2020. Following the successful conferences run by the Group in previous years on Women and Architecture, and on the architecture of James Gibbs and the Adam brothers, the symposium will highlight changing perspectives and new research on the architecture of London during the ‘long 18th century’ (c.1660-1830) undertaken since the publication of the 1988 edition of Sir John Summerson’s seminal Georgian London (reissued with amendments by Sir Howard Colvin, 2003). Topics may include, but are not limited to, the following:

  • Housing and estate development
  • Public and commercial buildings
  • ‘Improvement’: infrastructure, streets, open spaces, bridges, etc
  • Places of entertainment

With this in mind, proposals are invited for 15-minute papers based on original research. Please send abstracts of no more than 200 words and a copy of your CV to Dr Geoffrey Tyack (education@georgiangroup.org.uk) by 20 March 2020. Any questions regarding the symposium should be sent to the same address.

RSUA Conservation Diploma

Successful graduates from the RSUA Conservation Course are eligible to undertake the RSUA Conservation Diploma, and applications are now open.

The RSUA Conservation Diploma is research-based and involves the writing of a dissertation of around 20,000 words drawing on both original research and documented sources.  While historical subjects are eligible, candidates should note that practice-oriented dissertations are more likely to contribute towards accreditation by the RIBA and RIAI.  Examiners have been selected for their conservation expertise from across these islands. 

Speaker Info

Tanja Poppelreuter is a lecturer in Architectural History and Theory at the School of the Built Environment at Salford University. After being awarded a PhD in Art History from Goethe University in Frankfurt/Main, Germany she worked at the Department of Art History and at the School of Architecture at Auckland University, New Zealand. In 2011 Tanja took a post at Ulster University in Belfast, Northern Ireland where she taught in the undergraduate and post-graduate programmes and supervised a number of PhD projects.

Paul Arnold is Principal at Paul Arnold Architects and has been variously lecturer, tutor, co-director of the UCD Masters in Urban and Building Conservation availed of by architects, archaeologists, art historians and planners since 1986.  He was the conservation architect on the restoration of Dublin City Hall and the Ha’penny Bridge and Paul has worked on Leinster House and the Trinity Library Conservation Plan.

Stage 1 Registration
06.04.20 Date by which candidates are to register and submit the title of the topic intended for research.
Stage 2 Interviews
23.04.20 Interviews in which research subjects will be agreed and an opportunity offered to put any questions and seek guidance on sources and contacts
Stage 3 Seminar
26.06.20 Seminar at which candidates will be expected to make a brief presentation about their topics
Stage 4 Submission of the draft dissertation
23.10.20 Date by which draft dissertations must be submitted
Stage 5 Oral Examination
23.11.20 After which the dissertation should be formally presented taking account of feedback from the examiners
Stage 6 Final hand-in
14.12.20 Diplomas will be awarded by RSUA Council at a suitable occasion (NB: RSUA does not undertake to award the Diploma in every case)

Final copies of the dissertations must be A4 size (with fold-outs as required), and case-bound “thesis-style” with the title, name and year on the spine. Two bound copies should be provided, and an additional copy of the main text, including illustrations if possible, must be submitted digitally. Copies will be made available to the Ulster Architectural Heritage Society on College Square North, Belfast.  We reserve the right to change dates if necessary. 

Key details

Where:                                 RSUA, 2 Mount Charles, Belfast, BT7 1NZ

Cost:                                      RSUA Practice Services Scheme Members £400 + VAT

                                                RSUA Members £480 + VAT

                                                Non-member £533 + VAT

How to book:                     Contact Julia Leaker (Julia@rsua.org.uk) to book by 1 April. Cheques should be made out to RSUA and sent to 2 Mount Charles,Belfast, BT7 1NZ

UK Construction Week

UK Construction Week 6-8 Oct, 2020, NEC – Birmingham

Submit a paper here: Submit your entry here

If you’re interested in presenting a paper at the show, we’ve got a number of speaking slots available on below subjects:

– Achieving Net Zero in Construction: Waste, Water, Circular Economy, Energy Efficiency
– BAMB: Buildings as Materials Banks
– Designing for Wellbeing
– Digital Construction: Automation & AI
– Diversity
– Innovation in construction
– Land & Funding: affordable & council housing
– Mental Health
– Planning & removing barriers for housing supply
– Procuring for Public sector work/Frameworks
– Retrofit for Energy Efficiency
– Quality
– Skills shortage
– Social Value
– Successful Regeneration projects case studies

The 4th International Conference on Energy Efficiency in Historic Buildings

Wednesday, Oct. 7th, 2020 & Thursday, Oct 8th, 2020
Benediktbeuern, Germany

In order to achieve the ambitious governmental and societal goals in CO2 reduction which are needed to mitigate global climate change requires the contribution of all sectors including buildings and the construction industry. Historic and traditional buildings compose a considerable part of the worldwide building stock. Solutions are needed that respect the historic fabric of these buildings and yet contribute to energy efficiency improvements and CO2 reduction.

The 4th International Conference on Energy Efficiency in Historic Buildings EEHB2020 aims to present new research and best practices on a wide range of topics relating to energy efficiency in historic buildings. This year, the focus will be on the role digital technologies can play in improving the energy performance of historic buildings, whilst respecting the principles of conservation. In this context, the aim is to take a closer look at the interfaces between digital building models and the building simulation and the question of the necessary accuracy of both 3D digitisation and hygrothermal or building energy performance simulation tools. Both technologies – 3D scans and building simulation – have been available for a long time, but so far there are no automated processes for converting 3D scans into the energetic building simulation. In addition, more research is also needed on the degree of accuracy of the building survey using digital methods in order to represent a historical building accurately.

Abstracts will be selected based on their relevancy to the general theme of the conference, novelty, quality, advancement of the field and state of completion of the research or practice they are presenting. Selected abstracts will be invited for presentation at the workshop on “Recording historic buildings using digital workflows – Designing the intersection from 3D model to building simulation” on Monday, Oct. 5th, 2020, & Tuesday, Oct. 6th, 2020 before the main conference. Also, a poster session is planned. 

The following is meant to illustrate, but not limit, the scope of the conference: 

• State of the art and beyond approaches for the use of digital technologies to improve the energy performance of historic buildings 
• From 3D point clouds to building simulations – workflows and accuracy aspects within model creation 
• Approaches for digitisation of the energy refurbishment process 
• Tools and methods for analysis, planning, refurbishment to facility management
• Building and district level applications 
• Challenges in preservation of 20th-century historic buildings
• Development of new technical retrofit measures appropriate for different types of historic buildings
• Good practices presenting state of the art both in terms of achieved results and decision-making processes
• Investigations based in social sciences and humanities
• Need for training and education, knowledge sharing and critical analyses of the science-practice gap
• Laws, regulations and policies at international, national, regional and local level

Abstracts should be no more than 300 words long and must describe the research objectives, scope and method, as well as the main findings and implications of the work. 
Abstracts are due on February 25th, 2020. 

– Extension of Deadline for Abstracts to March 10th, 2020 

Please submit your abstracts under the following email-address: submission@eehb2020.org

For further details, please see: www.eehb2020.org

The conference is organised jointly by the Fraunhofer Centre for Conservation and Energy Performance of Historic Buildings and the Deutsche Bundesstiftung Umwelt and with the support of the Bezirk Oberbayern.

CfP RGS-IBG Session on Urban Borderlands: Conditions, Processes and Implications

Organised by Deljana Iossifova (The University of Manchester, UK) & David Kostenwein (ETH Zurich, Switzerland)

Urban enclaves are increasingly shaping our cities. A globalized real estate market and socioeconomic inequality contribute to the emergence of enclaves like favelas, slums and gated communities. Urban borderlands are the sociomaterial spaces in-between sociospatially dissimilar adjacent parts of fragmented cities: in-between urban enclaves, built and un-built, old and new, modern and traditional, rich and poor, planned and unplanned, formal and informal, permanent and temporary, local and migrant. Although often dominated by lines of divisions, such as walls and fences, urban borderlands can enable the inter- and transaction between disparate and otherwise disjointed social groups, infrastructures and ecosystems.
We are interested in the genealogy of borders, boundaries and borderlands in the city, including – but not limited to – the following: the processes of boundary delimitation; the triggers (such as insecurity or mistrust) and consequences of bordering; the occupation, appropriation, use or abandonment of in-between spaces; the strategies and tactics for maintenance and negotiation of borderlands; the transformation of individual, group and neighbourhood/city identities; human-environment interactions in urban borderlands. We are particularly interested in research that draws on systems theory.

We welcome theoretical contributions as well as those aimed at informing policy, design and planning for more appropriate decision-making that fosters the integration of underprivileged socioeconomic, ethnic or otherwise marginalized urban groups or species.
We invite the submission of abstracts from participants across all stages of their career and any discipline or geographic region. We are planning a Split Session with one (or more) paper sessions followed by a World Café discussing opportunities for future collaboration.

Please submit your abstract (max. 300 words) including your name, affiliation and title of your talk by 31 January 2020 to Dr Deljana Iossifova (deljana.iossifova@manchester.ac.uk) and David Kostenwein (david.kostenwein@istp.ethz.ch). Please include ‘RGS-IBG Urban Borderlands Session’ in the subject of your email.

International Conference Florence Heri-Tech


January 10, 2020 | Submission draft paper
February 10, 2020 | Submission of final paper

13 – 15 May 2020, Villa Vittoria, Florence, Italy

Florence Heri-Tech was launched in 2018 by the Department of Industrial Engineering of University of Florence (DIEF) and Florence Biennial Art and Restoration Fair. The idea was to create a synergy between Cultural Heritage and New Technologies. The Conference involves a large number of research projects and scholars from around the world and puts the industry’s current issues under the spotlight, specifically on issues related to innovative techniques and technologies for Cultural Heritage. The Conference is part of the Florence Biennial Art and Restoration Fair, an international event attracting prestigious institutions and companies and creating a unique opportunity to bring together the academic word with industry.
The city of Florence will therefore be the international heart of Restoration and Cultural and Environmental assets as well as a forum for meeting and discussing for experts and enthusiasts from around the world. The Conference will be a significant opportunity for exchange between researchers and companies for the promotion of productive excellence, technological evolution, the greater use of culture for younger sections of the population and specialization in the educational field for graduates and PhD students.

To find out more see here.

City University London: Summer 2020 Conference

Complexity and the City – Life, Design and Commerce in the Built Environment

Conference: 17-19 June 2020
Place: City, University or London.
ABSTRACTS: (Round One): DEC 2019 


Abstracts received later in December will be included in Round One reviews immediately. Later submissions will be included in Round Two.


Urban Design | Architecture | Sustainability | Engineering | Housing | Public Health | Sociology | Economics | Business | Governance | Art and Culture  |  History

Routledge | UCL Press | Intellect Books | Cambridge Scholars Publishing | Vernon Press | Libri Publishing.

– Design Education. Routledge. 2021
– Urban Histories in Practice. Cambridge Scholars Publishing. 2020
– Narrating the City. Intellect Books. 2020
– Critical Practices in Architecture and Place Making. Cambridge Scholars Publishing. 2020
– Designing for Health & Wellbeing. Vernon Press. 2019
– Global Dimensions in Housing. Libri Publishing. 2018
– From Conflict to Inclusion in Housing. UCL Press, 2017
– Visioning Technologies. Routledge, Taylor&Francis. 2016
– Filming the City. Intellect Books. 2014
– Housing the Future. Libri Publishing, 2015
– Housing Solutions Through Design. Libri Publishing. 2016
– Digital Futures and the City. Intellect Books, 2014.
– Imaging the City. Intellect Books. 2014       

The first years of the 1970s saw the introduction of a whole series of notions that would mutually inform our reading of the metropolis: social justice and the city, sustainability, defensible space, and urban centres as sites of public health. It saw the emergence of concepts such as the global city, urban economics, the post-industrial society and the cultural city. From art, design and cultural perspectives, post-modernism would critique of the whole modernist project.

Five decades after complexity theory was first applied to our reading of the city, this conference revisits its consequences. It reconsiders the city as an adaptive, self-organising and unpredictable system of interconnecting interventions, forces and perspectives. It asks how these competing and mutually reinforcing factors came into play and how they operate today. It questions how the city has been, and continues to be, informed by the practices of multiple disciplines.