Contributions are welcome under the four sub-themes of the conference “Bridging the Gap”:

Subtheme 1: Landscape Design
Subtheme 2: Construction/IT
Subtheme 3: Landscape Planning
Subtheme 4: Planting Design

ECLAS members have the ability to propose a themed session which, if accepted, would be organised by the proposer(s), with abstracts still subject to peer review.

We invite abstracts for oral paper presentations and posters. Papers will be presented at the conference in a thematic session. Posters will be shown during a poster session at the conference. Full papers and posters will be published in the conference proceedings.

  • Oral presentations should reflect research or projects discussing the question or problem addressed including its context, the methodology or argument, followed by the results and conclusions or a critical perspective. Papers about teaching practices are very welcome.
  • Posters offer an ideal way to present early research work or material, e.g. bachelor and master theses.

Sub themes 

Subtheme 1: Landscape Design

Landscape Design stands at the heart of landscape architecture. However, compared with architecture, the specificities and methods of what is intended by designing landscapes is still an open question. Are landscapes designed or is it rather project changes that impact landscapes? Bridging the gap – looking both from inside and outside of the discipline and being receptive to the dialogue with contemporary urbanisms or architecture philosophies will allow for a better defined Landscape Design in the future.

  • What specifically is Landscape Design and what methodologies are encompassed within Landscape Design?
  • How can we open the dialogue of our discipline?
  • How is Landscape Design best taught? 


Subtheme 2: Construction/IT

Construction is comprised of grading, drainage, materials, and structures. Therefore how Construction is taught plays a very important role in the landscape architecture education. Furthermore, Construction research in landscape architecture is very necessary. Architects, Structural and Civil Engineers cover a wide range of construction topics. The following questions arise:

  • How to combine design and construction in teaching?
  • How to combine teaching construction and research?
  • How to teach “design to cost”?
  • Between academic and commercial – bridging the gap. Are collaborations appropriate? What is the professional world demanding, what can universities deliver?
  • What elements of construction should be incorporated into the landscape architecture curriculum, and to what scope? What should we leave to architects, structural and civil engineers?

The application of computers in landscape architecture in the form of Computer Aided Drafting (CAD) started approximately 30-35 years ago in the area of construction drawings. It is now common to prepare all construction documents with computers. Handhelds are used in order to control construction workflows on building sites; robots are able to build walls. Roads are built by GNSS machine guidance systems.  This poses the following questions:

  • What should we teach besides CAD? What makes sense in CAD education (2D, 3D, civil engineering software)?
  • Will robots become more dominant at landscape construction sites?
  • High-tech surveying tools like drones and laser scanners, 3D printers and even smart phone construction apps – who can manage and afford all this equipment? How to keep up with the latest developments?


Subtheme 3: Landscape Planning

Landscape Planning extends to all areas and spatial scales. These range from large-scale cultural and natural landscapes to urban and peri-urban sprawls – bridging the gap. High quality landscape development adds to the well-being and health of the population, nurtures cultural values, and preserves ecological habitats and biodiversity of flora and fauna. The following questions arise:

  • How is a good landscape quality defined?
  • What is the role of design in Landscape Planning?
  • On which methods does good research in the field of Landscape Planning focus on?
  • What defines good teaching in the field of Landscape Planning?


Subtheme 4: Planting Design

Plants are the primary material of landscape architecture. They are of foremost importance in garden projects. Landscape Architect Dieter Kienast looked at gardens as a testing ground for his design ideas. He later applied them to larger projects. Garden Design was neglected in university education for a many years. Today the introduction of vegetation into the curriculum and vegetation research has led to the field Planting Design. It is time to talk about plants, gardens and how to approach it and the methods for teaching it. The following questions arise:

  • What is the best teaching method for the topic designing with plants? 
  • How to teach vegetation and research results in the field of Planting Design
  • How to apply economical Planting Design in landscape architecture?
  • How to combine Planting Design and plant maintenance in projects?
  • Is it still useful to teach classical knowledge of plants in times of internet and smart phone apps?
  • How to teach Planting Design to students with landscape apprenticeship or high school background?

Review procedures

1st Phase - Abstracts (blind review)

Authors should submit their abstracts online indicating their sub-theme and the form (paper or poster). Each sub-theme has been assigned to a group of reviewers under the coordination of a moderator. Reviewers have been selected based on their expertise and knowledge of the sub-themes. The abstract should contain a maximum of 300 words.

The conference organisers will distribute the abstracts to reviewers corresponding to the sub-theme for pre-evaluation. The conference organisers will select the papers and posters to be included in the conference.

Authors will be notified regarding the acceptance or non-acceptance of the abstracts. The accepted abstracts will be returned to the authors with the reviewers comments. Authors should then submit their full paper or poster at the designated time.


2nd Phase – Full papers (blind review)

Full papers will be uploaded to the conference website by the authors and reviewed by the group of reviewers under the coordination of the sub-theme moderators. Authors will receive comments and should then upload the final version of their paper following provided instructions. The full paper shall contain no more than 1,500 words.