Submission deadline:

September 29, 2023

Production Studies International Conference 2024: Transforming Knowledges of Architecture, Design and Labour

March 25-28, 2024
United Kingdom

Keynote Speakers: Sérgio Ferro (France)  Usina CTAH (Brazil)  Christine Wall (UK)
Exhibition Opening: Building: An exhibition under construction @ The Farrell Centre
Deadline for Abstracts: Friday 29 September
Notification of decisions expected around 18 October

Production Studies [PS] is an emergent field advancing the critical understanding of relations between architectural design and the production and labour of building. It arises out of TF/TK—a four year research collaboration involving more than two dozen academics and practitioners from UK, Brazil, Ireland and the US—which draws on Sérgio Ferro’s central insight that architecture’s dismissal and neglect of building labour is no mere oversight but rather a structural necessity of capitalist development to maintain the profession’s capacity to act ‘on’ and ‘over’ the building site.

Production Studies research is concerned with mainstream design-labour relations and its histories; with wider practices where design or intellectual labour is separated from production; and—recognising that in many parts of the world building takes place through self-organised processes—with other modes and possibilities of  building production. Within TF/TK, research and practice is diverse—from technical aid in Brazil and in the UK, temple stone-carvers in India, rural migrant building workers in China, maker-spaces in London, unions in the US and in Germany, art fabricators, popular and traditional forms of building, land, building materials and techniques—to Production Studies theory and methods. The researchers include scholars, practitioners and activists in fields such as architecture, history, politics, anthropology, art history, and social movements.

The organizers now invite researchers and practitioners to join in exploring this new field.

  • What resistances, alliances and practices could we turn to as emancipatory alternatives to hegemonic production where building know-how and co-operation are valued and affirmed?

  • What can we learn from studies of mainstream building processes and design/site relations?

  • What historical and contemporary discourses, processes and techniques have been mobilised by architects and by industry to secure the disqualification and subordination of building workers?

  • How does Production Studies challenge architectural theory and its assumptions and silences?

  • What structural similarities and specific differences can critical discussion across different socio-spatial contexts and cultures of building reveal?   

  • How can Production Studies explore pressing concerns around climate change, extractivism, indigeneity, gender and sexuality, anti-racism and coloniality? 

  • What other theoretical framings, bodies of research and practices can inform or expand Production Studies? 

The organizers have opened three types of calls:

Open Call – Papers
for 20 minute papers on any theme relating to the Production Studies call. Abstracts will be reviewed by the TF/TK core team

Open Call – Workshops
for 90 minute workshops responding to the Production Studies call with proposals for a convened activity, timed to fit within a 90-minute session. Please include details of space you will need or any other requirements.

Thematic Calls
for papers on specific topics convened by TF/TK researchers, who will review abstracts and co-ordinate panels. See individual descriptions below:

All submissions should be completed using the online form by Friday 29 September 2023.

More information can be found here.

Share this post

News from the field

On the Traces of Misery

“Miserabilia” investigates spaces and spectres of misery in the imagination and reality of the contemporary Italian urban context. The main objective is the definition of tools for the recognition and investigation of the tangible and intangible manifestations of...