The Conference

Dear colleagues,

We are happy to announce the 4th International Conference on “CHANGING CITIES: Spatial, Design, Landscape & Socio-economic Dimensions”, Chania, Crete Island, Greece, 24-29 June 2019.

The conference is organised by The Laboratory of Urban Morphology & Design, Department of Planning & Regional Development, University of Thessaly, Volos, Greece.

 in collaboration with

  • School of Architecture, Technical University of Crete
  • Regional Authority of Crete, Regional Authority Unit of Chania - Deputy Governor Mr. Apostolos Voulgarakis

The conference activities will take place at the CULTURAL CENTRE OF CHANIA which has four well-equipped conference rooms, and it is run by the Regional Authority of Crete Island. Crete is a very popular tourism destination; Chania is the most attractive town exhibiting a well-preserved Medieval and Renaissance historical core with a unique Venetian harbour, built between 1320 and 1356.

[ please see  ]

The series of CHANGING CITIES international conferences has started in 2013 and has so far delivered three conferences and always in venues with characteristic urban or/and natural landscape like the Greek islands in the Aegean Sea:

  • CHANGING CITIES I:  Spatial, Morphological, formal and socioeconomic dimensions, 18-21 June 2013, Skiathos Island, Greece.
  • CHANGING CITIES IΙSpatial, Design, Landscape and socioeconomic dimensions, 22-26 June 2015, Porto Heli, Peloponnese, Greece.
  • CHANGING CITIES IΙI:  Spatial, Design, Landscape and socioeconomic dimensions, 26-30 June 2017, Syros Island, Greece.

All three conferences have been welcome by the academic community of planners and architects worldwide attracting about 300 papers, and over 300 presenters from more than 50 countries - from the Balkans, Northwest Europe, USA and Canada, Latin America (Brazil, Chile, Colombia, Mexico), Middle East and North Africa, Asia, Far East (China and Japan), and Oceania (Australia, New Zealand, New Guinea). On this basis, we strongly believe that the 4th Changing Cities Conference will also be an academic success.

The conference covers a vast spectrum of fields related to the present and future challenges of cities. In the last decades, we have all witnessed a series of dramatic, universal changes and developments affecting cities – their morphology, environment, economies, and societies. Global new conditions such as economic globalisation, European integration and the creation of urban networks and hierarchies; post–industrial economies of culture and new technologies; consciousness of environmental degradation and the necessity of green design, sustainable development, and resilient cities; the development of informational societies, the increasing mobility of individuals, 'space-time' compression, and the emerging smart cities; growing terrorism attacks and new security infrastructures of public spaces; increasing migrations and cultural diversity of individuals, and coexistence in multi – ethnic and multi-cultural urban societies. In this new milieu, cities change themselves to ad hoc adapt into new conditions while simultaneously scholars and practitioners in urban planning and design, and urban policy-makers attempt to change cities so as to better fit into new conditions.

The conference aspires to bring together urban planners and designers, spatial planners, architects, landscape designers, urban geographers, urban economists, urban sociologists, and urban policy makers, and investigate all together new challenges concerning cities and their future. The conference aims at becoming an international forum of transaction of ideas on changing cities.

Following the rapid development of high technologies and their impact on cities, the main conference theme of this conference is:

SMART CITIES; Smart Environment, Smart Mobility, Smart Economy

The Organising Committee announces an important special session devoted on “Planning & Designing new cities in China”, which will be pre-organised by Prof. Huang He, PhD, Associate Professor, School of Architecture, Tsinghua University, Beijing, China, Deputy Secretary General of Institute of Urban Design in Architectural Society of China, Deputy Director of Institute of Urban Regeneration and Planning implementation in Committee of Urban Planning Society of Beijing.

The conference thematic fields include the following:

  • Urban Design in Planning,
  • Sustainable Urban Planning & Development,
  • Urban Landscapes, Landscape Planning & Design,
  • Urban Cultures & Public Open Spaces,
  • Historical Centres & Built Heritage Management,
  • Environmental Urban Planning,
  • Cities & Health
  • Resilient cities,
  • Transportation Planning and Policy in cities,
  • Urban Planning Laws, Real Estate & Property Rights,
  • Urban Economies & spatial impacts,
  • City Branding and Urban Tourism
  • Shrinking cities,
  • Divided cities,
  • Migration, multinational and multicultural societies & Urban Planning.


All abstracts submitted will be reviewed by the Scientific Committee and the authors will be notified on time about the outcome of the evaluation. The selected abstracts will be published in the conference E-Book of Abstracts with ISBN number.

The submission of full paper is optional; the papers submitted will be published in the E-Book of the Conference Proceedings with ISBN number.

The organizing committee is in contact with international scientific journals; and selected papers submitted in the conference may be published in special issues, after they have been reviewed. Regarding this possibility, the authors will be informed by e-mail. So far, such an interest has been expressed by

  • Following invitation by Cambridge Scholars Publishing, selected highly qualified papers will be published in a collective volume edited by Prof. Aspa Gospodini and to be published by Cambridge Scholars Publishing Ltd.
  • TOURISMOS - An International Multidisciplinary refereed Journal on Tourism.
  • Prof. Aspa Gospodini and Dr José Manuel Pagés Madrigal, chairing this  special session, will select high-quality papers of this special session for publication in PORTUS journal, issue 37/38, guest-edited by Dr José Manuel Pagés Madrigal.


We invite you all; and we hope all of us to make again a creative and fruitful conference.

With kind regards,


Aspa Gospodini, PhD UCL

Professor of Urban Planning & Design, University of Thessaly,
Dept. of Planning & Regional Development,
President of the Organising & The Scientific Committees


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