Submission deadline:

March 6, 2023

Footprint 34: Narrating Shared Futures

‘How will we live together?’, asked Hashim Sarkis, curator of the 17th Venice Architecture Biennale. He echoed the plea by his predecessor David Chipperfield (13th Venice Architecture Biennale, 2012) for a common ground that could illustrate ‘shared ideas that form the basis of an architectural culture.’ Understanding this common ground as the platform to exchange and communicate opinions, (dis)agreements and oppositions can create the basis for an architecture that respects cultural differences and allows for diverse stories to be heard. Our interest lies specifically in architectures of cultural heritage and how they can evolve into inclusive places for shared futures. The editors therefore see architectural heritage as the carrier of cultural, social, ecological, and economic values, as well as our past and present stories – institutionalised or not – through which we make sense of the world.

This characteristic capacity to carry our past and present stories is one that architectural heritage has in common with literature and its multiple narrative forms. Varying from formal (novels, short stories, poems) to less formal modes of storytelling (oral histories, internet blogs, spoken word poetry), literature recounts the world around us, and our engagement with it. Moreover, literature with its imaginative power brings to the fore future scenarios (both spatial and situational) in which we can live. The editors are interested in how literary stories can help us envision possible architectural schemes for the places of heritage. The editors wish to explore means of narrative expression that describe or foresee the lives of diverse people within architectures of cultural heritage, prompting us to think design options that would turn that heritage into a bridge between cultures.

By combining the study of cultural heritage and literature within an architectural framework, this issue of Footprint  examines how the past, present and future are constantly being made in the now through both literary and design techniques. The editors invite contributors to discuss past stories, analyse and examine present narratives, and imagine and suggest future scenarios, all in relation with selected places of heritage and literary works. In particular, the editors wish to explore the potential of literary sources to look into the previous life of cultural heritage sites, propose narrative techniques to interpret the current conditions of the sites, and entangle methods of imagination and design to propose new possibilities for the future. The issue asks:

  • How can literature and storytelling help us imagine new programmes and uses for architectures of heritage that promote cross-cultural exchange?
  • How can we use literary approaches to assess the past, present and future impact of heritage sites on the (re)creation of shared cultures and memories?
  • What literary methods can be used in architectural and urban studios dedicated to culturally sensitive design for heritage architecture?
  • Can the stories of literature and the histories of heritage work together to spark a multiplicity of new future and inclusive spatial accounts?

Proposals for full articles (6000–8000 words) or review articles (2000–4000 words) will be evaluated by the editors in the form of abstracts (max. 1000 words for full articles, max. 500 words for review articles) based on originality, methodological and conceptual clarity, pertinence, and contribution to the growth and development of knowledge on the subject. Abstracts must be submitted by 3 December 2022. The authors of the selected abstracts will be invited to develop their contributions by 6 March 2023. The full articles will go through a double-blind peer review process, while the review articles will be evaluated by the editors.

The editors ask authors to refer to the Footprint Author Guidelines, available at:

All contributors are responsible for securing permission to use images and copyrighted materials.

For submissions and all other inquiries and correspondence, please contact the editors Aleksandar Staničić and Angeliki Sioli at

Footprint 34 will be published in the spring of 2024.

Contact Email:

More information can be found here.

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