Call for abstracts: Deep Adaptation – The Spatial Dimension


The future, which we thought we had maybe another decade to prepare for is now suddenly here. In all likelihood, we can expect further crises of similar severity, especially in the context of climate change.

The 21st century will be radically different from the 20th. Conventions, techniques and social practices we are familiar with will disappear. Our responsibilities and roles as architects and urban planners will also change fundamentally. Until now, science and society have played down or denied the vulnerability of our urban structures to the risks that are direct effects of our current way of life.

In the search for alternative and, in a sense, more realistic perspectives, Jem Bedell’s concept of “deep adaptation” (2018) calls for a shift: He urges us to prepare for the collapse of certain systems that currently govern our lives - and to see this as an opportunity for positive change.

This change and the resulting challenges we are facing are primarily not technological, but above all social, economic and organisational. Moreover, they are highly interdependent and all-encompassing and require systemic change, profound transformations and adaptations of action. It is therefore not a question of developing technical solutions in isolation, but rather of fundamentally rethinking the way we live, operate, work, travel and interact.

We welcome contributions that address this fundamental change of our environment. The key question should be what chances and opportunities but also challenges and risks for our cities will arise out of that. We are looking for the creation of future narratives that manage to convey the propositions for change in convincing images.

Contributions from all fields of expertise and knowledge are welcome. We particularly welcome abstracts from interdisciplinary teams.

Publication of call August 10th
Abstracts/draft paper: October 1st 2020
Editors' selection of abstracts: October 15th 2020
Abstract/draft paper reviews: December 2020
Full paper submissions: March 2021
Reviewing papers:  April 2021
Revised paper submissions: May 2021
Publication date: June 2021

Issue Editors: Daniel Zwangsleitner (TU Munich), Elettra Carnelli (TU Munich), Benedikt Boucsein (TU Munich), Franklin van der Hoeven (TU Delft)

SPOOL is a peer-review Scopus-indexed open access journal for design in architecture and the built environment. 

SPOOL operates a double-blind review process. The review takes place in two stages.

SPOOL will first facilitate the review of an extended abstract of the proposed contribution. The contribution is typically sent to a minimum of two independent expert reviewers to assess the scientific quality. The preliminary review results in advice on how to proceed with the paper.

The same reviewers will review the full version of the contribution. The issue editors take the final decision regarding acceptance or rejection of contributions, based on the reviews. That decision is taken at both stages by the issue editors. The decisions by the editors are final.