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Architecture 101

The number ‘101’ refers to an introductory course, to the basics of a discipline. What are the fundamental questions of architecture? What were they 101 years ago, and what will they be in another 101 years? 

We are celebrating 101 years of architecture at Newcastle University by holding an international conference to ask fundamental questions of our discipline.  

Architecture continually renews itself through questioning. Many of today’s questions are shaking the foundations of the discipline, affecting every architecture school, practice, and media outlet: 

How? The Climate Emergency: the biggest challenge to humanity with architecture at the centre. How do we think the unthought, story the unstoried? Unbuild and rebuild? 

Who? Equity: Who can become an architect? Who can practise architecture? Whose voices are heard and whose actions count? Who has the power to say what’s in and what’s out? Whom do architects serve? Whom do we include in our design work? Whom should architects work for? And maybe more importantly, whom shouldn’t architects work for?

Why? Values: What matters in architecture? Why do we design how we do? What are the values that drive our actions? What role can architects play in society? Competition or collaboration? Award-winning, bread-winning, or just endlessly plate-spinning? 

When? The Future: What will we build? What won’t we build? What will new technologies, materials, processes, language and media enable in spatial design? Artificial intelligences or intelligent artifices? What kind of architecture might shape the world? 

Where? The Gaps: Between education and practice, technologies and cultures, women and men, design and performance, East and West, North and South, rich and poor. Where should energies be directed?  

Looking to the next 101 years, we invite workshops, papers, performances, and provocations that address such questions, or ask new ones. We envisage a lively celebration of architectural questioning, in-person and online, with opportunities to create collaboratively, to make visible the unfolding commentary, to seed action and explore together. In addition to the published booklet of abstracts, we will produce an issue of arq: Architectural Research Quarterly emerging from the conference, we are in conversation with Routledge about a conference book, and we welcome proposals for alternative forms of output that reach new audiences.   

Newcastle University will shortly open The Farrell Centre – an exciting new public architecture centre and urban room – and the event will be held across the School of Architecture, Planning and Landscape and the Farrell Centre.  

Call for Participation

To foster discussion, dialogue and collaboration, we welcome standard and non-standard conference contributions which can seed meaningful interactions between participants. The conference will be held primarily in-person while we also offer opportunities for online participation. In addition to paper sessions, we invite proposals for a variety of interactive formats. 

All submissions should be completed using the online form by Monday 22 May 2023.

Please contact conference organisers at: if you encounter any issues with accessing or completing the submission form.