About CITY

The IAFOR International Conference on the City

The IAFOR International Conference on the City

The IAFOR International Conference on the City is an exciting addition to our global conference calendar. It places the international, intercultural and interdisciplinary tenets of The International Academic Forum (IAFOR) at the very heart of multiple academic approaches to the city, from the development of the classic city states east and west, to the emergence of the vast organisms that are our modern cities.

Different cities have very different personalities, influenced, for example, by history, government, climate and geographical location. From fast-paced financial powerhouses to relaxed tourist resorts, they are governed in different ways, and compete against each other for attention and resources both domestically and with foreign rivals. This conference encourages interdisciplinary and comparative reflections from the world’s cities, from the smallest cathedral city to the mighty, sprawling metropolis.

The city has always been a centre of creativity and imagination. The many cultures that are formed within its confines have become definitive of the development of human civilisation in different eras. From the settlements produced by the ancient river civilisations on the Nile, the Tigris–Euphrates, the Ganges and the Yellow River, to the classical and medieval city states, to the modern cities of the industrial revolution, the city provides an exciting object of study. The conference is set up to encourage the exploration of the city in all its variations and to provide a further context for reflection on globalisation as the wave of today and tomorrow.

This conference, held in parallel to The IAFOR International Conference on Global Studies (Global), provides a counter to the localised perspectives that can easily obscure the simple fact that many of the world’s major cities have now become, more than ever, global portals and places of international exchange.

We invite academics from around the world to join us in the fascinating historical, cultural and artistic centre of Barcelona, to exchange ideas and participate in the continuing story of this city.

About IAFOR’s Cultural & Area Studies Conferences

IAFOR’s programme in cultural and area studies is highly developed, with some of the world’s leading academic institutions coming together to celebrate the international, intercultural and interdisciplinary.

IAFOR’s conferences in cultural and area studies are both academically rigorous and intellectually stimulating, and are organised in partnership with universities such as the University of Barcelona, Spain; Moscow State University in Russia; Birkbeck, University of London; Lehigh University and Northwestern, USA; University of Indonesia, Indonesia; Waseda University and the University of Tokyo, as well as such groups as the Cultural Studies Association of Australasia. In addition, we offer a rich cultural programme that takes advantage of the location, whether in Kobe, Tokyo, Brighton, Dubai, Honolulu or Barcelona, and we encourage the exploration of local arts, gastronomy, history and architecture.

IAFOR actively supports culture and the arts, namely by running internationally recognised awards for both documentary photography and photojournalism (IAFOR Documentary Photography Award) and documentary filmmaking (IAFOR Documentary Film Award), which are supported by leading institutions and organisations, including World Press Photo, Metro Imaging, MediaStorm, Think Tank Photo, University of the Arts London, RMIT and Medill School of Journalism, as well as the prestigious IAFOR Vladimir Devidé Haiku Award, which is supported by the Haiku International Association, the World Haiku Association and The Haiku Foundation.

As well as providing excellent opportunities for meeting and interacting with some of the biggest names in the fields of cultural and area studies, IAFOR conferences create an intellectually challenging yet friendly environment for the presentation and nurturing of new ideas, which is encouraging of the research synergies that drive new developments, and create new knowledge. We look forward to your very active participation.

Previous Speakers

The following speakers, among others, have presented their research at IAFOR's conferences on cultural and area studies.

Dr Angela Wong Wai Ching, Professor of Gender Studies at the Chinese University of Hong Kong, Hong Kong; Professor Yvonne Jewkes, leading criminologist from the University of Leicester, UK; mobile technologies expert Professor Gerard Goggin, Chair of the Media and Communications department at the University of Sydney, Australia; Dr A. Robert Lee, author, critic and broadcaster; Professor Baden Offord, Handa Chair of Human Rights Education at Curtin University, Australia, sits on a panel with Professor Donald E. Hall, Dean of the College of Arts and Sciences at Lehigh University, USA; Dr Koichi Iwabuchi, Professor of Media Studies and Cultural Studies and Director of the Monash Asia Institute, Monash University, Australia; Professor Bill Ashcroft, renowned critic and theorist, founding exponent of post-colonial theory, and co-author of The Empire Writes Back; Professor Svetlana Ter-Minasova, Founding Dean and current President of the Faculty of Foreign Languages and Area Studies at Moscow State University, Russia; Professor Hsiao-Chuan Hsia, Taiwanese gender rights activist; eminent literary and cultural critic Professor Regenia Gagnier, University of Exeter, UK; Hong Kong activist, lawyer and academic Professor John Erni.

Other IAFOR Cultural & Area Studies Conferences

Ways to Get Involved

IAFOR depends on the assistance of a large number of international academics and practitioners who contribute in a variety of ways to our shared mission of promoting international exchange, facilitating intercultural awareness, encouraging interdisciplinary discussion and generating and sharing new knowledge. We are grateful for the time, effort and expertise donated by all our volunteer contributors.

Here are some of the ways you can get involved:

IAFOR Membership

IAFOR membership provides an exceptional opportunity to be a part of a leading global academic organisation, network and platform that is committed to nurturing the very best in interdisciplinary research in the global public interest. Membership is open to all scholars, professionals and policymakers, researchers, or those with a strong professional interest in education.


With thousands of abstracts submitted each year for presentation at our conferences, IAFOR relies on academics around the world to ensure a fair and timely peer review process in keeping with established international norms of double-blind peer review. Our peer review process, which involves both reciprocal review and the use of Review Committees, is overseen by conference Organising Committee members under the guidance of the Academic Governing Board.

If you hold a PhD or another terminal degree in your field, are a current or former faculty member and have previous peer review experience, we encourage you to join the CITY Review Committee. To apply, please send your CV to [email protected].


IAFOR publishes six online, Open Access, editorially independent journals across a variety of disciplines, which are associated with IAFOR’s conferences. IAFOR journals are edited by academics who are experts in their fields, and journal submissions are evaluated by Editorial Board members and peer reviewers across the globe who have the relevant qualifications and expertise.



Publish your research in one of IAFOR’s Open Access, editorially independent journals. Articles may be submitted via open calls for papers. Authors publishing with IAFOR are not required to pay submission or publication fees of any kind, and IAFOR journals are available to a global readership online, completely free of charge and without delay or embargo.

Conference Proceedings

If your abstract has been accepted, and you presented the work at CITY (including Virtual Presentations), you are encouraged to submit a full paper via the online submission system for inclusion in the Conference Proceedings, which will be made available online. For further details of how to submit your paper, please view the Final Paper Submission page. IAFOR Conference Proceedings are Open Access research repositories that act as permanent records of the research generated by IAFOR conferences. Please note that works published in the Conference Proceedings cannot be considered for publication in IAFOR journals.


THINK, The Academic Platform, is IAFOR’s online magazine, publishing the latest in interdisciplinary research and ideas from some of the world’s foremost academics, many of whom have presented at IAFOR conferences. Content is varied in both subject and form, with everything from in-depth articles to shorter opinion pieces, interviews, film and photography.

THINK gives academics the opportunity to step outside of the traditional research publishing status quo – to get creative, explore different disciplines and to have their ideas heard, shared and discussed by a global academic audience.

To write for THINK, please view the Submit page on the THINK website and then send your article proposal to [email protected].


Are you a student? Would you like to meet delegates and academics who are experts in their fields, practice your communication skills and experience a truly international academic event? The IAFOR Volunteer Programme offers opportunities for students to assist at IAFOR conferences such as CITY, involving responsibilities such as greeting participants, helping with registration and guiding participants to presentation rooms. To find out more about volunteering at an IAFOR event, please visit the IAFOR Volunteer Programme page.

If you have any questions, or if you would like to suggest additional ways in which you could contribute to IAFOR’s interdisciplinary activities, please feel free to email [email protected].