Call for papers

The call for papers is now closed

Programme now finalised

Conference themes

Delegates were invited to submit proposals for presentations, workshops or poster displays addressing the overall theme of the conference, children’s rights in the built environment.

In addition, all presentations addressed one of the following specific themes:

  1. Planning, housing, and the neighbourhood environment
  2. Activism and children’s voices
  3. Children’s mobility, travel, and transport
  4. Play and playwork

1. Planning, housing, and the neighbourhood environment

What is the role of planning policy in creating playable, child-friendly neighbourhoods?
What is the role of design and architecture in producing the conditions for children’s play and mobility?
With increasing density, what are the tensions, in spatial planning, between social policy, economic forces, and children’s rights: is ‘gentrification’ part of the child-friendly city?

2. Activism and children’s voices

How do child-friendly cities support children and young people as active citizens?
How do advocacy and participation models best respond to children and young people’s direct action for change?
What are the synergies, or tensions, between children and young people’s culture, children’s rights, community activism, and public policy?

3. Children’s mobility, travel, and transport

What are the pressures on children and young people that inhibit their freedom to move around their neighbourhoods?
How can traffic management, highways engineering and public transport do more for children’s mobility?
What examples are there of transport policy effectively supporting children’s rights?

4. Play and playwork

What is the role of policy and practice for the built environment in supporting children’s right to play? What is the role of playwork, childcare, and other children’s services in the child-friendly city?

Crosscutting issues

In addition to the four themes, we encouraged submissions to consider one or more of these crosscutting questions:

a. The built environment and the climate emergency
How can the built environment support children’s rights to enjoy nature, and tackle the overarching challenges of climate change, carbon reduction, and sustainable development?

b. Scaling up
What are the narratives, methods, and resources necessary to translate research findings and innovative practice on children’s rights in the urban environment into public policy on a population scale?

c. Responding to all ages
How should the built environment respect and safeguard the rights of all ages of children: from pregnant women, babies, and toddlers, to older teenagers?

d. Equality and inclusion
How do child-friendly cities ensure adherence to the fundamental principles of universal children’s rights, non-discrimination, inclusion, and accessibility for all, in the face of developmental and economic pressures? How do child-friendly cities respond to migration and the refugee crisis?

Scientific Committee

Abstracts and other submissions were assessed by a committee of specialists in play, urban planning, and children’s geographies:

  • Dr. Maria Nordström, Visiting Senior Researcher and Associate Professor at the Swedish University of Agricultural Sciences (Chair).
  • Dr. Jenny Wood, Research Associate, School of Energy, Geoscience, Infrastructure and Society, Heriot-Watt University, and co-founder of A Place in Childhood CiC, Edinburgh, Scotland
  • Dr. Matluba Khan, Research Associate in Evaluation Research and Public Health, Institute of Health Equity, University College London, and co-founder of A Place in Childhood CiC, Edinburgh, Scotland.
  • Jeanette Fich Jespersen, MA, Head of the KOMPAN Play Institute (KPI), Denmark.
  • Adrian Voce, MA, President, European Network for Child Friendly Cities.