CAAD Futures 2021: Call for Papers & Workshops

edited January 12 in General

Dear OS Arch community,
I would like to invite you to contribute to the upcoming CAAD Futures Conference that will take place in July 2021. While formally hosted by the University of South California, in LA, USA, we are planning for a hybrid event. CAAD Futures is an international biannual conference established in 1984 in Delft by the CAAD Futures Foundation which maintains it, with the purpose of " promoting, through international conferences and publications, the advancement of Computer Aided Architectural Design in the service of those concerned with the quality of the built environment."
The theme for the 2021 iteration was set to "Design Imperatives", under which, we attempted to design a call to ask for the contemporary relevance of these claims. Among perhaps more frequent topics, in this iteration we included tracks about unionization, intersectionality in design, matters of local heritage of design computation, as well as tracks on data policy, open-data, open-source and about the 'tools of the trade'.

We are now accepting:
-Full Papers (min 8 pages). Current deadline: January 25. However, we are currently planning to extend it to February 1st. Papers go through a double blind review. As per tradition papers go into a Proceedings volume published by Foundation and are indexed in CumInCAD (open-access). Additionally a selection of best papers is published by Springer (unfortunately that is not open-access but we are trying to see what we can do about that). The conference will take place in July 16-18, and in local LA time ( PST) .
-Workshop Contributions. Current deadline: February 15. We provisioned for multiple different types of workshops like seminars, tutorials, discussions and hackathons. Durations can be from 2-3h minimum, to multiple days, with a cap at 8h per day. Workshops will take place before the conference (Saturday-Thursday) and we decided to include both week-days and weekend-days to facilitate different instructors and audiences. Workshops applications (online via form), ask applicants to specify workshop duration and also suggest a delivery model that best fits to them. Contrary to the conference, the workshops don't have to follow any particular time zone. Moreover, we are planning for workshop results/outcomes/findings to be presented during the conference, and if possible also archive them.

There is not much to be said about academic papers, all information is online.
Workshops however, I believe could be particularly interesting for OS Arch initiatives that need to reach audiences. The scheme that we outline should be able to allow (to offer some ideas):
-teaching software
-developing projects with certain tools/software
-testing software with users
-presenting software/initiatives for feedback and peer-review.

We would be very excited with your involvement, and we would kindly invite you to contribute.

It came up on the IRC/Element channel, where I originally posted, that it would be great to have a session to show complete workflows with OS software as well as perhaps an overall presentation of the current stage of this software ecology, of the OS Arch community and its goals.

Disclaimer: We run on a volunteer basis (both organizers as well as peer reviewers) and our financials are pretty much dictated by the registration fees and by sponsorships. In the definitive decision that there will be no physical component to the conference (for that we await to hear from local authorities, however rather likely) we intend to cut down on registration fees as much as possible, and in this way encourage participation for a general audience too (non-authors). Regardless, we are planning for the conference to be publicly accessible remotely via stream, without registration but without the capacity with interaction with presenters or other participants (Workshops will only optionally be recorded/streamed). Therefore (1) I consider unlikely that we will be able to offer any fees to workshop instructors. And (2) I consider highly likely that the conference will be sponsored by a commercial software company. As much as we would prefer not to promote such practices especially because conferences are fundamentally about making knowledge open, I am afraid that, as it is almost the norm in similar conferences, we cannot afford to turn them down, in order to cover conference expenses.

Papers are not yet in and there is a long way to the peer-review process. What I am personally expecting is that the auxiliary program, that we are already planning, will likely attract many people to follow the conference. Hopefully both academics as well as practitioners and students.
We decided on keynote-panel discussions instead of singular speakers, and we plan to have roughly a panel per track if possible. We strive to be inclusive, and while it's still early, we already have an considerable list of guest-panelists that we are yet to disclose.
Lastly, I have already asked Moult to join and help curate a panel discussion regarding open source architectural software.

Looking forward to see you at the conference in July!
More info at
I am at your service for any questions.

Kind regards,
Constantinos Miltiadis
Research Fellow at Aalto University, Finland
Co-chair for CAAD Futures 2021

PS. Another thing that came up at the IRC channel is the question of platform for the conference to run, for which we take suggestions. Currently we are planning to use Zoom which is approved by the local university.



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