Hosted by Birmingham School of Architecture and Design Birmingham City University
4th to 6th November 2020
EURAU 2020 will explore urban identities that have the capacity to articulate multiple perspectives in the contemporary city in terms of different processes and fields of study from evaluation and analysis, through design and formulation, to making—through act or construction—and critique. The conference offers the opportunity to examine exemplars from around the world and their relationship to contemporary Europe, what does European identity mean? Can it be found outside Europe?
The conference will be held in Birmingham City University at the centre of the cutting edge city of Birmingham which is itself cast within a broad array of identities, ranging from; progressive (often brutal) modernity; through industrial archaeology and a manufacturing renaissance; to post-industrial opportunities, automotive-environments and a broad multi-ethnicity. As a city this layered character has been built over decades of diversity, opportunity and community, and as a result is a perfect setting for a conference on Identity, which is itself often ambiguous. However, although these urban disparities in Birmingham can be augmented by other aspects of difference—such as sexuality, gender, race, ethnicity, politics, ideology, technology, and of course Brexit to name but a few—the committee has not structured the conference along these lines. Instead, specific strands have been identified in relation to architecture and its associated disciplines across which such approaches to knowledge can be addressed and allow these areas of difference to be mapped alongside moments of identity. Thus academics, students and practitioners are encouraged to submit papers, presentations and posters that also address ideas of identity that form a critical part of community and belonging within six strands:
- Identity and Difference in Architectural Theory
- Place, Practice, and Making the City
- Art Practice and Performativity
- Heritage and Memory
- Travel and Infrastructures
- European Pedagogies—legacies and opportunities
At this critical moment for Europe, where exclusivist ideologies are beginning to re-define the future of the continent, this conference offers an open platform to discuss what a European identity could mean at the beginning of the XXI Century and whether, like the rise of modernity in the face of a declining ancien régime at the beginning of the twentieth century, we are in search of a new paradigm.