AHRC Sensory Cities Network

Conference Programme

Sensory Cities

New Methods and Approaches for Research, Planning, Design and Curation

24 March 2017

The Wash Houses, Aldgate E1

This international conference aims at bringing together academics and urban professionals, from museum curators to architects and urban planners, to discuss how to research, create and represent sensory experiences of urban environments. It is the part of the AHRC funded research network “Sensory Cities: researching, representing and curating sensory-emotional landscapes of urban environments” (2015-2017). As cities are not only driving economic forces in Europe but crucial entities for providing a sense of place in a globalising world, it is important to examine the role of the senses in place-making and attachments. Drawing on the experience of three cities that are exemplar for different forms of urban regeneration, London, Cologne and Barcelona, a range of cross-disciplinary, cross-European and cross-professional panels will discuss: What can academics and urban professionals interested in the senses learn from each other’s’ methodological approaches? How can sensory methods help museums to discuss a city’s past, present and future? How can the senses inform urban design in an ethical way? What structures can enable a participatory approach? In the evening we will launch the first sensory digital toolkit developed through the discussions and experimental methods trialed across three cities to research the sensory geography of place.

Convenors: Dr Monica Degen and Dr Astrid Swenson, Brunel University London


Conference Programme

10:00-10:30 Registration and Coffee

10:30-11:00 Welcome & Introduction: Monica Degen & Astrid Swenson

11:00-11:45 Keynote Lecture : Gillian Rose (Cultural Geography, Open University): Smart, sensory, sensible: embodying the city’


11.45-13.00 Round table: The Nature and Culture of the Senses
Chair: Jill Steward (History, Newcastle University)

  • Marta Tafalla (Philosophy, Autonomous University of Barcelona)
  • Alex Rhys-Taylor (Sociology, Goldsmith)
  • Manuela Barz (Digital Design, London Metropolitan University)
  • Astrid Swenson (History, Brunel University London)

13:00-14:00 Lunch

14:00-14:30 Artistic Intervention: Kate McLean (Information Experience Design, RCA & Grafic Design, CCCU)


14:30-15:45 Round table: Curating the Sensory City
Chair: Robin Skeates (Archaeology, Durham University)

  • Cathy Ross & Beatrice Behlen (Museum of London)
  • Carlos Delclos & David Bravo (Centre for Contemporary Culture Barcelona)
  • Rita Wagner & Sascha Pries (City Museum of Cologne)

15:45-16:15 Coffee and Cake


16:15-17:30 Round table: Designing the Sensory City
Chair: Michael Hebbert (Bartlett School of Planning, UCL)

  • Rebecca Madgin (Urban Planning, University of Glasgow)
  • Chris Miele (Montagu Evans LLP)
  • Stefano Faiella (Threesixty Architecture, Glasgow)
  • Carolina Vasilikou (Architecture, Reading University)

17:30-18:00 Concluding Comments: The Interdisciplinary City; Jill Steward, Michael Hebbert & Robin Skeates

18:00-19:00 The Sensory Cities Think-kit Launch
Monica Degen & Manuela Barz

Wine Reception

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Recent Comments

    Sensory Cities

    MoniDegenMonica Degen
    @MoniDegen:
    RT @ProfGillian: Posthuman Agency in the Digitally Mediated City - my latest paper is online now and you can get a free copy here: https://…
    5 months ago
    _NinaJMNina Morris
    @_NinaJM:
    Great to see geographer @ProfGillian on Smile! The Nation's Family Album on @BBCFOUR #photographs
    5 months ago
    ProfGilliangillian rose
    @ProfGillian:
    honoured by this endorsement from someone using Stiegler in such interesting ways - thanks James! https://t.co/mtGfMgT1Bn
    5 months ago
    ProfGilliangillian rose
    @ProfGillian:
    RT @allartmarkets: Representing the claim that smart data can make everything great @OliverZanetti @AMValdez_OU #digimethods https://t.co/8…
    5 months ago
    OU_FASSFASS@OU
    @OU_FASS:
    RT @allartmarkets: Making a city smart takes much more than data infrastructure @OliverZanetti @AMValdez_OU @ProfGillian #digimethods http…
    5 months ago
    allartmarketsLiz McFall
    @allartmarkets:
    Making a city smart takes much more than data infrastructure @OliverZanetti @AMValdez_OU @ProfGillian #digimethods https://t.co/KHtQQaCIEG
    5 months ago