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Call: Thematic Issue for Urban Planning: The City, Aging and Planning

Call for contribution

Title: The City, Aging and Urban Planning

Editors: Matthias Drilling (FHNW University of Applied Sciences and the Arts Northwestern Switzerland) and Fabian Neuhaus (FHNW Switzerland; as of July 2018 University of Calgary, Canada)

Deadline for Abstracts: 15 September 2018
Deadline for Full Papers:
  15 December 2018 
Issue Release: March/April 2019

Information: Aging is not a destination nor a place, but a process. The city is a result of this process having its physical form shaped by technology and planning. For over two decades, cities around the world are designed on the basis of political models that focus on an aging society, such as “age-friendly cities”, “aging in place”, “lively neighborhoods” or “elder-friendly communities”. But according to scholars, such models are often not founded in theory, remain mostly financial-driven and follow normative social discourses like “successful aging”. Such reactive strategies are patching the urban fabric, creating disconnected and fragmented cities with spaces gradually slipping out of reach for the aging population.

This critique is the starting point of this upcoming thematic issue. The goal is to extend the discussion by speculating on the nature of the process, reaching from smart technology to social spaces, from mixed use to housing. Ultimately, our purpose is to connect the city to ADL (Activities of Daily Living) as part of the same every day. There is neither a single “old age” or “the city”. This special issue aims to discuss the proposed topic as progressive and multidimensional. Our aim is to make a theoretical as well as practical contribution to the many disciplines that are involved in—and concerned with—urban planning as an ongoing process.

We expect contributions that reflect on the relationship between city, age and planning through:

  • Theoretical contributions (e.g., ageisms, spatial injustice, hegemonic discourses, stereotypes);
  • Examples from cities in the North and South (redevelopment projects, neighborhood development projects, residential areas, etc.) and their ideals;
  • New or alternative approaches that reach beyond the age-related city (like “universal design”);
  • Contributions that focus on the past (such as historic aspects or housing biographies) or are specifically concerned with future scenarios such as aging and city in 2100, or aging in the future city.

Instructions for Authors: Authors interested in submitting a paper for this issue are asked to consult the journal's editorial policies and to send their abstracts (about 200-250 words, with a tentative title) by email to the journal's editorial office ( by 15 September 2018

Open Access: The journal has an article publication fee to cover its costs and guarantee that the article can be accessed free of charge by any reader, anywhere in the world, regardless of affiliation. We defend that authors should not have to personally pay this fee and advise them to check with their institutions if funds are available to cover open access publication fees. Institutions can also join Cogitatio’s Membership Program at a very affordable rate and enable all affiliated authors to publish without incurring any fees. Further information about the journal’s open access charges and institutional members can be found here.