Doctoral Colloquium & ERASMUS Blended Intensive Programme

  • Download full programme as PDF
  • Dates of the onsite programme: September 7 – 11, 2024 
  • Online activities before and after the onsite event
  • Host & Venue: Université Libre de Bruxelles (ULB), Brussels, Belgium
  • Possibility for staff & students to attend with ERASMUS funding
  • Integrated into the ECLAS 2024 annual conference

Target Groups & Objectives

This programme is addressed to current and prospective doctoral students in the field of landscape architecture and its neighbouring disciplines.

We also invite researchers and academics who are supervising dissertations. The colloquium may also be of interest for prospective supervisors who wish to learn from peers about tutoring methods in this field.

The overall objective is to share and discuss methodological aspects in an international landscape architecture research community. Doctoral students get new perspectives on their work and a great opportunity for expanding their networks. The thematic focus will be – as much as possible – in line with the 2024 conference theme on regenerative landscapes.

However, you can also participate with your own topic even if it does not fit into the thematic lines of this years’ conference call.

Activities, preliminary schedule & outcomes

  • Before 07.09.24: Digital preparation meetings and matchmaking
  • 07.09.24: Workshop for doctoral students in thematic groups and team building in close cooperation with the conference chairs
  • 08.09.24: Fieldtrips. Reflecting field research aspects.
  • 09.-10.09.24: Doctoral students fully integrate in the conference activities and map research approaches observed. They prepare a rhetorical precis and a reflection.
  • 11.09.24: Doctoral students share their findings from the conference observations, reflection and agree on next steps.
  • After 11.09.24: 3 online follow-up meetings (this is an integral part of the programme)

Expected outcomes

  1. Competence development (see section ‘learning objectives’)
  2. Reflective or visual essays (to be published with the conference proceedings)
  3. Continuation of the network of doctoral students
  4. Certification within the scope of 5 credits (ECTS)

Background of this colloquium

As a practice-led discipline landscape architecture faces a challenge when trying to impose some sort of methodology on a somewhat theory-resistant subject. While the positivist sciences provide a well-equipped box of quantitative tools for investigating the physical layers of our environment and some for the social aspects, qualitative instruments from the domain of social sciences are often required for interpreting the human factor, especially in a deep way. The application of methods found in or developed by neighbouring disciplines has become common practice in landscape architecture research.

Conversely, the planning and design process itself has developed into a research method in its own right: Landscape architecture can create new knowledge through design and by the critical review or post occupancy evaluation of designs and implemented projects. However, this approach is only at the beginning of evolving its full potential. Furthermore, the product (or the process) itself can be regarded as an issue for research. We use case-study methodologies, critical analysis and hermeneutics for positioning landscape architecture in our cultural and social context. All of these can be valid approaches. Luckily, none of them tells the whole story on their own.

This is of course a reduced and incomplete spotlight on the situation but it shows the dilemma all (not only) young landscape architecture researchers face: How can we create new knowledge? In our colloquium we will try to approach this question by means of an interactive discourse over several days among young and senior researchers from Europe and beyond.

This programme aims at supporting the development of third cycle competences in the field of landscape architecture and related disciplines of environmental planning and design.

Learning objectives of this programme for doctoral students

We expect that all participants are going to:

  • Increase their familiarity with research methodology in general and the methods of their specific field of research in particular.
  • Improve their ability to present and discuss research and research findings authoritatively in speech and writing and in dialogue with the academic community in an international context
  • Develop a reflective awareness of how their work is part of a broader perspective, in particular by exchange and collaboration with peers in related fields
  • Recognize the relevance of academic networking and improve their own activities in this field
  • Develop their leadership and teaching skills by giving qualitative and reflective feedback to their peers
  • Foster intellectual autonomy and integrity by means of advanced discourse and reflection with peers

Full and active attendance in the online and onsite programme will be recognized with 5 ECTS on behalf of ULB.

How to participate as doctoral student or senior researcher

How can I participate as a doctoral student?

  • Submit your topic to the ECLAS Conference Call by January 31, 2024. Indicate in the submission form that you are a doctoral student and interested in participating in this programme: https://conference.eclas.org
  • In case you have missed this deadline: email to colloqium@eclas.org no later than April 15, 2024.
  • You will get feedback until the end of April 2024 if you are accepted
  • On that basis, or ideally already earlier, please contact your international office, or ask your supervisor to do so, to make sure you can activate an ERASMUS mobility grant to support your travel and subsistence during the 5-days-programme at ULB. The grant is around 70 Euro per day plus travel days.
  • If you are fully employed at your university, you can come with a ‘staff mobility for training’ ERASMUS grant.
  • In case you have missed all of this, there is always the possibility to attend based on your own funding. However, we highly recommend exploring this funding opportunity.
  • Please be aware that this funding opportunity is usually only available within the European Union or within countries associated to the ERASMUS+ programme.

How can I participate as a senior researcher or supervisor?

  • If you plan to submit an abstract to the ECLAS Conference Call by January 31, 2024, please Indicate in the submission form that you are interested in participating in this programme as a senior advisor: https://conference.eclas.org
  • In case you have missed this deadline or in case you are not planning to submit to the conference call: email to colloqium@eclas.org no later than June 1, 2024.
  • On that basis, please contact your international office, to make sure you can activate an ERASMUS staff mobility grant to support your travel and subsistence during the programme at ULB. The grant is around 160 Euro per day plus travel costs.
  • In case you have missed all of this, there is always the possibility to attend based on your own funding. However, we highly recommend exploring this funding opportunity.
  • Please be aware that this funding opportunity is usually only available within the European Union or within countries associated to the ERASMUS+ programme.

I am a prospective doctoral student. Can I participate?

If you are a future doctoral student and still in the process of developing a thematic framework you are also invited to attend the discussions. In that case you may not submit an outline but please send an e-mail to colloquium@eclas.org to inform us about your intention to attend.

As a doctoral student, what do I need to prepare?

We invite current and prospective doctoral students to present a poster (A1) of their methodical approach in relation to the research hypothesis or question. Please answer the following questions with no more than 80 words each. You can add graphics:

Title of my research project

  • Please state the short and the long version of your doctoral thesis.
  • What is my research topic and why did I select it?
  • Please explain what has been your (initial) assumption/hypothesis that you wish to prove or disprove. This section is not only about assumptions, etc., but also about context and scientific and societal relevance.

What is my research question and which research strategy & approach have I selected to answer this question?

  • Please explain why and on the basis of which methodological consideration you have chosen this research strategy. This section is, of course, also about specific sub-questions. Often there are (too) many sub-questions (!).

What is my research method and why have I chosen it?

  • Please explain your methodical framework and the methods you selected in order to implement your research strategy/approach.
  • There can (also) be multiple methods of course, each relating to a specific sub-question. Which guidance did you have/use when you select(ed) your research method?

What is, or will be, my empirical evidence and how will I collect and analyse my data/evidence?

  • What kind of evidence will be generated and how will it be analysed?
  • Explain, for example, your choice of case study and your selection of study areas, and any other approach to generating evidence.
  • In this context it might be useful to also explain your way of operationalizing the theoretical concepts that are included in your research question.

Poster template, submission and deadline

The poster is to be prepared according to a template, will be provided shortly. Please check this website for updates.

Submission deadline: 31st of August 2024 to this e-mail: colloquium@eclas.org

Certificates

A certificate of 5 ECTS will be issued for full participants on behalf of the host university, ULB Brussels, and ECLAS, the European Council of Landscape Architecture Schools.

Contact

For any questions, please email to colloquium@eclas.org