to Nov 8



Conference Convenors: Dr Mridula Nath Chakraborty, Faculty of Arts, Monash University & Professor Anoma Pieris, Faculty of Architecture Building and Planning, University of Melbourne

Conference Organising Committee: Dr Sukhmani Khorana (University of Wollongong), Dr Nadia Rhook (University of Western Australia), Dr Tim Steains (University of Sydney), Dr Monika Winarnita (La Trobe University), Dr Denise Woods (Curtin University), & Jan Molloy (Immigration Museum)

It has been at least half a decade since Stuart Hall and Paul Gilroy traced the shift from the older racist order based on “nature” and biology” to “national” and/or “ethnic” culture. This shift has not resulted in any disruption of the old paradigms of racism, but rather spawned a hydra-headed creature, of new colonialisms and new global capitalist regimes, that replicate themselves constantly in order to mobilise technologies of governance in contemporary societies. As Pooja Rangan and Rey Chow have argued, the move towards identity politics/coalitions and biopolitics have the potential of both negative-repressive as well as generative-creative functions. In Australia, identity-based politics now permeate every aspect of political, social and cultural life, from equity gap to environmentalism (Ghassan Hage), from arts/performance cultures to Asian-Aboriginal reconciliation (Jacqueline Lo), from racialized state violence to new media terror consciousnesses (Suvendrini Perera).

Asian Australian Studies itself traditionally employed strategic essentialisms in fashioning Asian Australian identities that resist racialising structures (Lo). However, essentialisms such as these are sometimes charged with reproducing the logics and boundaries of race – the very structures anti-racist politics attempt to undermine (e.g. Gilroy, Chow). Sometimes progressive critiques of identity are mobilised to delegitimise studies of race and ethnic identity altogether. How then do we examine and, even, mobilise Asian Australian identity in light of these critiques of ‘identity politics’? How have Asian Australian identities and identity politics changed over time, and are there new or emerging forms of these phenomena in the present day? How do eruptions of protest by far-right groups leverage these dissonances in identity-based coalitions, and what can anti-racism advocates do about it?

Themes and topics
Papers and panels are invited on the following topics related to Asian-Australian identity construction refracted through the lens of new and old racisms.

Constructing Asian Australian Identities:
• Birth of a Nation: Creating, documenting and marking Asian-Australia identities
• Genealogies of race, class and identity within Asian Australian diasporic generations
• Art, activism and aesthetics in the cultivation of Asian Australian cultures
• The management politics of multiculturalism vis-à-vis Asian Australian minorities
• Lateral inequalities and discrimination amongst Asian Australian communities
• Representation and ‘value’ in expressions of Asian Australian arts and culture
• ‘Asian Australian’ academics/public intellectuals and the creation of a distinctive public sphere
• Material and spatial/architectural practices mobilised in Asian Australian identity formation
• Archiving Asian-Australian identities

Interrogating Asian Australian Identities
• Black lives matter and who gets to be ‘black’ in Asian Australia?
• Aboriginal-Asian Australia: convergences and contradictions
• Politicising Asian Australians: Is this necessary, and why?
• New racisms in policy making and social engineering
• ‘Pure’ versus hyphenated/biracial Asian Australia
• Digital Asian Australians in the ‘real’ world?
• Crazy Rich Asians versus politically-(in)correct ones?
• Tensions between economic and political migrants and/or refugees

Contesting Identities through Asian Australia
• Polarisation, protest and Asian-centred identity politics
• Whither #metoo in Asian Australia?
• New racisms within colour blind politics
• ‘subtle asian traits’ and emerging Asian Australian identification
• Solidarities and comparisons across the settler colonies: Asian-Americans, Asian-Canadians and Asian-Australians

Please note that attendees and presenters will be required to register and pay a registration fee via the conference website. Early bird and concession fees will be available.


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HKU Graduate Students Conference 2019
to Jun 1

HKU Graduate Students Conference 2019


Graduate student organisers: Ting Wang, Diego Javier Caro, Chun Wai Charles Lai, Sben Korsh
Faculty advisers: Cecilia Chu, Eunice Seng
Confirmed keynote speakers: Jiat Hwee Chang, Kelly Shannon & Giovanna Borasi

While modernity has been widely perceived as a universal phenomenon that encompasses different localities in Asia, the forms of cities and urban landscapes have been shaped and reshaped by specific histories, shifting geopolitics, and growing collective concerns over ecology and sustainability. By analysing the transfer of knowledge in the built environment disciplines, this conference aims to interrogate the role agents and institutions play in the built landscapes of Asia and beyond.

The papers will follow two tracks:

Diffusion and History of Modern Architecture and Construction
This track investigates processes of transfer and diffusion of modern architecture and construction. Subjects of inquiry may include material usage, technologies, and professional practices and expertise examining the less iconic, unofficial, everyday spaces or sites, and that transcend old perspectives. This track aims at bringing attention to issues of post-colonial architectural and construction histories and expand our knowledge of transnational and transcolonial networks in history.

Mobilities of Capital and Power in Post-Cold War Asia: Landscape, Infrastructure, Urban Form
Over the past decades, accelerating processes of capitalist globalisation and foreign capital investments have had growing influence on the production of infrastructure and built landscapes in Asia. Projects funded by overseas capital have been seen as mediators of local and global interests as well as sites of knowledge exchange and political negotiation. Analysis of the contestations and conflicts in the production of these built environments may include enquiries on specific projects that challenge the status quo of international relations and the ways they impact everyday life of individuals and communities at home and abroad. Deciphering the geopolitics of these projects, how they are shaped by the mobility and expansion of capital, and how these dynamics materialise in landscape, infrastructure and urban form will be explored.


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GASS 2018 - Pacific Rim Community Design Network/Structures for Inclusion 18
to Dec 16

GASS 2018 - Pacific Rim Community Design Network/Structures for Inclusion 18

  • National University of Singapore (map)
  • Google Calendar ICS

This international conference aims to bring together academics, practitioners and students from the three networks in Asia (Great Asian Streets Symposium), Pacific Rim (Pacific Rim Community Design Network) and the U.S. (Design Corps and SEED Network) to share multiple perspectives on Emerging Civic Urbanisms and Designing for Social Impact

With rising awareness of the impacts of environmental degradation and growing social and economic polarisation, various forms of civic urbanisms are emerging around the world as an alternative to the growth-oriented and market-driven urban development of the past. This implies an awakened desire for a new paradigm in society based on more sustainable ways of life, which contributed to the increased interest in communal life and shared identities in localities, with greater emphasis on well-being, quality of life, social inclusion, environmental consciousness, and active participation of citizens in decision-making. 

In a fast changing political and social context, this conference draws attention to the possibilities and challenges that we face while moving towards a more inclusive and sustainable future. It provides a timely platform for scholars, professionals and students interested in contemporary urbanisation and its future trajectories to question and reflect upon the ways we approach our built environment through various planning and design processes to inspire new visions of urbanism.

Symposium Themes

Main theme: 
Emerging Civic Urbanisms / Designing for Social Impact

Grassroots advocacy and activism
Collaborative/citizen-driven placemaking
Heritage conservation
Community building and engagement
Urban commons and sharing city
Environmental well-being

Register HERE or contact for more information

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to Jul 11


  • Australian Academy of Science (map)
  • Google Calendar ICS

The 34th Annual Conference of the Society of Architectural Historians, Australia and New Zealand 2017

Quotation, Quotation:  What Does History Have in Store for Architecture Today?

The Architecture Program, Faculty of Arts & Design at the University of Canberra is pleased to host Quotation, Quotation:  The Thirty-fourth Annual Conference of the Society of Architectural Historians, Australia and New Zealand, to be held from Wednesday 5th to Saturday 8th July 2017 in Canberra, ACT.

In addition to the conference hosts, this event is proudly supported by
*AIA, ACT Chapter
*Cox Architecture, Canberra
*FJMT (Francis-Jones Morehen Thorp Pty Ltd) Architects, Sydney
*Stewart Architecture

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2nd SEAARC (Southeast Asia Architecture Research Collaborative) Symposium
to Jan 7

2nd SEAARC (Southeast Asia Architecture Research Collaborative) Symposium

  • Department of Architecture, SDE (map)
  • Google Calendar ICS

Across various disciplines, attention on the category of the “Other” has shone light on women, minorities, the poor, profane, criminal and mundane. But what and where is the category of “Others” in architectural studies? Is it to be attached to the spaces and buildings associated with these marginalized social categories? Or are there intrinsically architectural “Others” – subjects within the discipline that undergird its internal discourse through contrast and opposition – that should be opened up to interdisciplinary scrutiny? Finally, what can Southeast Asia offer to the larger intellectual debates in which the category of the “Other” has played a critical role in the last few decades?

Poster design by Seow Yeong Chuan

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9:00 AM09:00

Urbanisation and the Production of Space - International Symposium

PhD student Sha Liu recently attended the international symposium 'Urbanisation and the Production of Space' in Shanghai, China on 24 November 2016 and provided this feedback on her experience.

"Co-organized by the University of Sydney China Centre and the Faculty of Architecture, Design and Planning (FADP), in collaboration with six Chinese partner institutes, the symposium included top experts on Chinese urbanisation. Unlike conventional academic conferences, each session had two or three experts holding sharply different opinions and who debated heatedly with each other, like a fierce debating contest. I was able to participate in the discussion by raising questions, and communicated face-to-face with those leading experts, which was very mind opening.

Sha Liu is a PhD student in Urban and Regional Planning and Policy in the Faculty of Architecture, Design and Planning

The symposium was co-ordinated by Duanfang Lu, Professor of Architecture and Urbanism at the Faculty of Architecture, Design and Planning.

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Hidden Traces of Shared History
9:30 AM09:30

Hidden Traces of Shared History

This symposium brings together leading researchers who are working on 19th and early 20th century collections of Asia Pacific photographs. Alongside a broader consideration of the significance of the history of photography in the region, explorations of visual and built traces of identity formations, globalised trading and agricultural industrialisation, and the envisioning of modernity and nationalism during the late colonial era will be highlighted. The projects featured in the symposium demonstrate different modes of archival research and interpretation methods and a spectrum of geographical connections showcasing different pathways into the photographic collections. As a cross disciplinary platform of research exchange, the symposium aims to generate an overview of new approaches to research into the 19th and early 20th century history of the Asia Pacific region. These are developing through working with the era’s arguably most captivating and rich visual traces.

The symposium is led by Dr. Amanda Achmadi, Prof. Paul Walker, Dr. Karen Burns, and Dr. Bronwyn Stocks, and is co-organised by the ACAHUCH (Australian Collaboratory for Architectural History, Urban and Cultural Heritage) of the Faculty of Architecture, Building and Planning at The University of Melbourne.

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Reading Indonesian Cities: Dreams, Nightmares and Memories of a Nation - Indonesia Forum Panel Discussion
to Jul 13

Reading Indonesian Cities: Dreams, Nightmares and Memories of a Nation - Indonesia Forum Panel Discussion

  • The University of Melbourne Parkville VIC 3010 (map)
  • Google Calendar ICS

Indonesian cities are challenging environments for those who call them home and complex readings for their observers. The nation’s unfinished shaping is ingrained in the cities’ fragmented urban forms, multifaceted cultures, and unfolding transformations. Imagined identity and power relations have been constructed, enforced, and challenged, sometimes silently other times violently, through the pragmatic realities of the cities’ built fabrics and polarised social landscapes. This makes Indonesian cities a rich field to reflect on the stage of the nation today.


• Prof. Abidin Kusno (York University)
• Prof. Vedi Hadiz (Asia Institute, The University of Melbourne)
• Prof. Kim Dovey (Faculty of Architecture, Building and Planning, the University of Melbourne)
• Prof. Widjaja Martokusumo (Institut Teknologi Bandung/ITB)

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IPCS Symposium: Border  Thinking/Thinking About Borders
9:00 AM09:00

IPCS Symposium: Border Thinking/Thinking About Borders

  • The Institute of Postcolonial Studies: IPCS (map)
  • Google Calendar ICS

Despite the many forces for economic and political unification in the post-national era, the demarcation, relocation, deconstruction and passage across geographic borders shape contemporary national subjectivities and their constitutive spaces. Recent research has recognised the intensification of political subjectivities at the nation’s (purported) periphery, its impact on marginalised subjects and the traumatic inscription of border crossings on the bodies of the politically disenfranchised. The border has prompted many intellectual positions such as ‘Border as Method’ and ‘Border Thinking’ which identify the critical and epistemological significance of the periphery. It has produced interdisciplinary academic scholarship on physical border lands, immigrant mobilities, and human security. This symposium builds on an ongoing intellectual exploration of borders in theory and in practice that have prompted a number of events. They include an IAG panel (2014), a proposed issue of Fabrications 25:3 (2015), and a future book project.

The planned symposium includes individual presentations from a number of scholars, including postgraduate students. It is followed by a creative practice workshop run by architect/artist/poet, Alex Selenitsch, who will test their research methodologies through his project for a Liminal House.

This event is part of an ARC research project: Temporal Cities, Provisional Citizens: Architectures of Internment led by A/Prof. Anoma Pieris of the Melbourne School of Design.

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Traditionalism, Colonialism and Modernism: Asian Heritage Transformed
to Oct 4

Traditionalism, Colonialism and Modernism: Asian Heritage Transformed

  • The University of Melbourne (map)
  • Google Calendar ICS

Drawing on the expertise of researchers, designers and advocates from across South East Asia and Australia this two day symposium will examine recent trajectories in heritage practice, teaching and thinking in Asia. It will focus on the conservation of buildings as well as the wider context of urban and cultural heritage and will address the immediate challenges confronting the field today.

Coordinated by Dr. Amanda Achmadi, Lecturer in Architectural Design (Asian Architecture and Urbanism), ABP

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