‘Adapting to climate change, in other words, means that coherence of the city’s form will alter, due to forces outside human control.’ [Richard Sennett, Why Climate Change should signal the end to the City-State, The Guardian, 9 October 2014]. In October 2014 the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change acknowledged for the first time that climate change is occurring, that it is caused by the rise in atmospheric CO2 levels produced by burning of fossil fuels, and that if left unchecked, it will soon give rise to widespread and irreversible negative changes to the planet. It now seems inevitable that local will and political structures may have to bend to the more powerful and erratic force of climate change in the coming years.

The extent to which these changes may be mitigated will inform the scale of adaptation required, but it now seems certain that our understanding of how we build and what we build will fundamentally change in the coming years.

We are concerned with the interrogation of the spatial impact of climate change, at an infrastructural and local level along with an examination of the relative policies. We wish to explore the role that architects can have in this discussion.

Papers might challenge accepted modes of thinking at the scale of the city, urban planning and civil infrastrucutre; but also at the scale of the local, the community and building fabric. Submissions might posit adaptive strategies connected with sub themes for example: materials, craft and building methods; water supply, drainage and flood design; the body and shelter; food supply, transport and movement networks. Regulatory frameworks may be interogated and alternative approaches which span across scales and disciplines and between the built, the cultural and the societal modes of thinking may be posited.

Session Chairs: Fiona Hughes, University College Dublin, and Orla Murphy, University College Dublin