Architectural Science Review The virtual and the physical. Between the representation of space and the making of space

Architectural Science Review

The year 2017 was the 5th eCAADe Regional International Symposium 2017, which was held in Cardiff, Wales, UK. ASR would like to include a Special Edition referring to this conference and its theme addressing the following subject areas.

  • Building performance computing
  • Architectural space representation
  • Computational Fabrication
  • Computational Design Thinking

Architectural Science Review as the name implies emphasizes the review components of the journals papers, which tends to appeal more to the readership. There is an interest in bringing summaries of knowledge across new themes, which is of interest to the architectural field.

In this Special Edition, we will assemble a range of papers by leading authors and research teams on a wide range of topics that are intimately related to the theme above.

Call for papers

The realm of computation in architecture spans from the virtual representation of space to its physical making. Beyond the visualisation of space we are concerned with the different models of space to explore and uncover its relevant properties. In this ASR special issue we will explore the dimensions of space beyond its physical existence and try to understand the implication of computation in architecture to social, political and environmental spaces. At the other end of the spectrum computation in architecture intends to optimise, automate and integrate effective methods and concepts into architectural production. Through biomimicry and material computation, we explore alternative approaches to space construction. We are interested in the gravitational field between the before mentioned extreme ends of computation in architecture. With this collection of original research papers, we intend to uncover how computation in design and fabrication influences our understanding of space and how vice versa the computational representation of space affects the production of architecture. We aim to reach to the extremes of the spectrum of architectural space to speculate critically about its creation in theory and practice.

We call for academic papers, reports of practical work or design propositions, which engage with the transition from the virtual to the physical, which explore the realm between the representation of space and the making of space. We are interested in how we represent architectural space and its manifold diversity of social interaction, economic determination, environmental impact, functional requirements and spatial quality to make it available and impactful to computational design processes. Architectural space is manifest in built shape and solid form determined through various parameter. How do we represent non-geometrical parameter to find their way into the design process? How do we account for spatial quality to be sustained during computational design procedures? Where do we integrate potential social interaction and functional interconnection in the various design systems? What are the driving forces of the architectural design?

Apparently, these questions are existent in academia but they infiltrate more and more into architectural practices. The question of what and how and who is influencing and controlling the design process moves more and more into the focus of the practicing architect. Is the academic promise of computational driven design viable in practice? Is robotic fabrication an alternative way for mass customising building elements in a cost-effective way? How is virtual reality supportive in the daily design routine of architectural practices? What is a viable procedure to transform the virtual representation of space into the physical space of a building? What material properties affect the fabrication process and become manifest in the design system?

We welcome academic papers focussing on the application of computation in architecture as well as papers with a focus on the theoretical exploration of computation, space and design process. We address also practitioners whose work or reflective practice contributes to the conference theme to share their views and work.

Submission instructions


Please submit an extended abstract (500-750 words) to by 1 May 2018. The abstract should outline the scope, method and results of your original research and should clearly refer to advancing the field in one of the specific topics of the Special Issue.

Invitation for a full paper

After a positive evaluation of your abstract, we will invite you by 13 July 2018 to submit a full paper to the special issue.

Full paper submission

Please submit the full paper no later than 14 January 2019. The length of the manuscript should be no more than 6000 word plus illustrations. The paper will be reviewed by selected reviewers in a double blind process as per normal ASR paper reviewing procedure but we will fast track this reviewing process to guarantee publication by the end of 2019 (online). See details of deadlines below. Please see links to the ASR home page for the instructions to authors:

Editorial information

  • Guest Editor: A. Benjamin Spaeth