Thematic Areas

The 2022 3rd Valencia International Biennial of Research in Architecture encourage the submission of papers concerning the hereunder thematic areas:


Representation and quantifying

Graphic expression has proved itself as both a stimulating and fruitful field for architectural research and experimentation along with many other neighboring disciplines. Frequently used as a means for documenting and transferring information integrated in more complex processes, graphic words have occasionally become final results themselves and even cult objects. Quantifying and databases might play a similar role when it comes to portray situations and processes. In both cases, drawings and numbers are not just indispensable and inspiring tools, but also genuine reflections of our interests and occasionally, premonitory foresights of our aspirations. This thematic area welcomes papers from different fields of graphic expression and data gathering and processing which focus on the changeable priorities of architectural research nowadays.

City, territory and landscape

With their own internal and external dynamics and with their different scales, city, territory and landscape constitute exciting scenarios to start work on from multidisciplinary and interdisciplinary points of view. Among these contexts, urban fabrics and public space constitute a base for research from morphological, functional, social and environmental perspectives. This thematic area encompasses papers on the geographic field of the city, the territory and the landscape. Among many others, topics to be addressed may include human scale, morphology and activity in the city, occupation, permanence, transformation, mobility, and obviously landscape as cultural heritage and daily life stage, through the point of view of the most relevant burning issues of the current context.

Innovative practices and projects

Design can be defined in many different manners, but one of the most popular options is the one describing it as an open answer to a complex question, which needs to be tested with more or less successful results when confronted with the different circumstances and boundary conditions of the particular case. The attitude of a designer when tackling a commission is decisive and a true announcement of the kind of outcome to be expected. Human life and the necessary habitat to conveniently develop it are nowadays more complex than ever and recently subjected to changing priorities and unexpected emergencies. This thematic area includes papers on innovative practices and ways of doing when undertaking a commission in the architectural context, and papers on innovative projects capable of solving needs or offering options in unexpected and/or brand new manners.

Technology and materials

The ever more demanding social needs and ambitions and comfort levels are mostly satisfied by innovative evolved materials and building technology. It is absolutely undeniable that the last century really passed the baton to the current one when it comes to go in innovating in products, building techniques, structural systems and conditioning. Accessing the right technology is frequently a determining factor when ambitioning to ensure the success of an urban or architectural project. This thematic area welcomes papers on, among many other topics, innovative materials for the building industry, building techniques for a better building and a better living, creative assessment or development of structural analysis and design, and improvement in conditioning techniques.

Theory, criticism, narrative and ethics

The current architecture context demands a thorough reflection upon the role of theory and criticism in order to determine strong foundations for knowledge, judgement and design in architecture. On one side, reviewing the nowadays validity of contributions in theory and criticism on architecture and a variety of
neighboring disciplines is a must. On the other side, it is always interesting to track links between theory and criticism with the current architectural practice and the ambitions, needs and priorities of contemporary society. Likewise, the lack of universalizable certainties and principles makes architectural narratives and ethics on architecture absolutely necessary. This thematic area encompasses papers of any kind related to theory, critical thinking, narrative and ethics in architecture and encourages all necessary debates, especially those introducing changing priorities as a decisive factor.


Heritage, restoration, conservation and renovation

The interpretation of history has traditionally opened new ways to build the future. Geographical and timescales frameworks are vast enough to cover stages which compromise from ancient cultures to contemporary times, being a transversal and multidisciplinary approach and an interesting endeavor. Likewise the way that we relate to our heritage has meaningfully evolved during the last decades with innovative results which can be framed within the categories of restoration, conservation and renovation. This thematic area encourages papers on the critical reading of history of architecture, heritage, restoration, conservation and renovation as a matter for any architectural research. These fields constitute an amazing window of opportunity in modern practices that has inducted the development of many fascinating research lines.



Participation, diversity and inclusiveness

Our society nowadays witnesses a process of reflection, reconsideration and even suppression of many traditional concepts and values such as hierarchical governance, adequacy or even normality. People are increasingly claiming their rights to take command of whatever has a decisive influence on their lives and to be happy and accepted despite their features, preferences and circumstances. Participation processes, diversity, inclusiveness and many other neighboring concepts have also arrived to daily architecture practice and are having an incipient bud deciding influence on how the discipline responds to the challenges of our needs and changing priorities. This thematic area welcomes papers dealing with new societal dynamics, their irruption in architecture professional practice and their influence on the architectural output. Examples of previous pioneering examples and study cases of any period will also be welcome.




Sustainability and climate crisis

Initially related merely to energy and natural resources, the concept of sustainability has evolved and incorporated many other facets. Architectural production and building industry have a meaningful influence in several of these facets and convenient knowledge and practical implementation become a
must for any practitioner in order to safe a logical present and a feasible tomorrow for the planet. Climate crisis is not a premonition any more. Its effects and consequences can be assessed in too many aspects of our daily lives and in the environment. This thematic area welcomes papers on sustainability and/or climate crisis under the spotlight of research in architecture and neighboring disciplines, as one of the most relevant priorities of the current international context.


Health and pandemic

The irruption of the COVID-19 pandemic shocked the world, hit the economy and completely changed our lives two years ago. Home lockdown turned architecture into an indispensable prevention tool in order to keep under control the expansion of the disease and save our lives. This unexpected and sudden home-isolation endowed us with a different perception of our places. Likewise the rediscovery of public buildings and outdoor spaces provided us with renewed expectations and a firm commitment of overcoming the sanitary crisis more resilient. But this has not been the first pandemic which has shaken humanity along history. Previous episodes caused by other maladies had a meaningful influence in how we designed and used architectural output. This thematic area welcomes papers on the influence of health issues and pandemics, with a special focus on the COVID-19 pandemic, on architecture and neighboring disciplines.