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Call for papers and presentations

AUM2018 is the seventh in a planned series of annual symposia on applied urban simulation models that offer insights into urban change and support the realisation of imaginative and practical urban initiatives. Since the launch of the AUM series in 2011, the symposia have attracted delegates from diverse disciplines, universities, professional institutions, government agencies and civic groups in many countries.

During the Roundtable session of the preceding symposium AUM2017, it was agreed that AUM2018 would be held as a three-day, major event that features a wide range of contributions, with session formats that strengthen the voice from outstanding young scholars and research students. The Symposium will built on the extensive network of academics and practitioners in infrastructure planning, city design and the assessment of societal impacts of physical interventions, and take the opportunity of this major event to extend the engagement with wider disciplines.

In order to provide a focus for Symposium contributions, AUM2018 is particularly interested in receiving papers and presentations that address long-term urban change. In this context, ‘long-term’ is defined as perspectives that reach beyond the common policy horizons of 2, 5 or 10 years. As the national and local political agendas continue to refocus on shorter term matters, it is essential that we do not lose sight of longer term questions such as climate change, energy substitution, aging, shifts in personal mobility, migration, and the application of artificial intelligence in everyday objects.  Climate change, for instance, remains critically important for both mitigation and adaptation at a time when some government administrations such as in the US propose to step out of their obligations.

Those who work on operational or short term modelling have a vital contribution to make to AUM2018 because views on the long term often have profound implications for more immediate choices. This long term perspective may also prompt developments of new analytical methods and tools for measuring growing urban inequalities, and supporting new policy and community initiatives for improving fairness in cities. 

In line with the tradition of AUM, we also welcome papers that represent innovation in model theories, designs, methods, apps and other niche tools, application case studies etc that are not directly related to the theme above on long term change.

Following the Roundtable discussions last year, we propose to create a new kind of short presentation sessions which are supported by symposium posters, such that each poster will have around five minutes of presentation time at a plenary session. We have recently experimented this combined presentation-poster format in a student event ‘City+', where the dissemination of posters are significantly enhanced. This will be programmed alongside classic, standard-length papers which has 20 minutes for plenary presentation and 10 minutes for Q&A.

Additionally, if there is enough demand, we may further experiment with a session format for extended papers – under this new format each paper will be given one hour, typically divided into 30 minutes of presentation by the author(s), 15 minutes of review by a discussant, and 15 minutes of Q&A with the audience.  A full draft paper will need to be submitted by the paper deadline (see below) in order to allow time for preparation of the discussant review and any pre-Symposium revisions.  

The symposium will continue with the simple, plenary format of AUM, together with ample time for off-session discussion and networking, which provide opportunities to develop an in-depth understanding of the state of the art across a wide range of different model types and styles, and learn from good practice.  We expect to continue with the inclusion of high quality presentations from PhD candidates and young postdocs, along with those from world leading theorists, model developers, users and practitioners.

The deadline for all paper and presentation proposals is 30 April 2018. Those authors who wish to confirm acceptance decisions early (e.g. for arranging travel funding and logistics) are welcome to email in the proposals earlier than the deadline, and they should allow around two weeks for the decisions and feedback from the Scientific Committee.

For standard-length and short papers/presentations, please email in an abstracts of 500-1000 words with a working title and 50-100 words as headline summary. Those who are interested in presenting an extended paper, a full draft paper is expected, of between 5000-8000 words (or a sensible equivalent of space if extensive captions are used; the word limit excludes bibliography) and a headline summary of 50-100 words.

Please email all the papers and proposals to Tianren Yang at

For AUM2018 we propose to continue the dissemination strategy through peer reviewed publications, supplemented by an AUM website with public and delegate-only repositories.

We wish to engage with a wide group of authors, including leading scholars, policy analysts, decision-makers, practitioners, post-docs and PhD students close to completing their dissertations. Those working at the sharp-end of applied urban modelling and its use in policy, investment or regulatory decision-making are particularly welcome. We look forward to hearing from authors from the developing countries in Asia, Latin America and Africa, as well as the developed countries.

The symposium is open to all model types and styles. It welcomes particularly papers that assess tangible pathways towards achieving practical solutions.  We also welcome papers that report innovations in related disciplines.

Expected audience and dissemination
Because of its direct policy relevance we expect a wide audience. For this reason, the authors are encouraged to report their theories, methods and findings in a non-specialist language.

The Symposium papers are expected to be at the leading edge of research and modelling and in the usual way they will be disseminated through journals with a rigorous refereeing process. Key city region case studies are likely to be disseminated in conjunction with city region or local authority partners through online publication and social media to feed into the policy debate in a direct and accessible manner.  

Symposium delegates will have full on-line access to papers and presentations via the AUM2018 website.

Symposium Venue

AUM2018 will be held in the Crausaz Wordsworth Building in the grounds of Robinson College, Cambridge. The venue offers a fabulous meeting and socialising space for symposia of this size. For details see

Expenses and possible financial assistance
AUM2018 requires a registration fee (see table below) which covers access to symposium papers and presentations, refreshments, conference reception on 27 June, lunches on all three days, and suppers on 27 and 28 June. Participants are expected to pay for their own travel to and from Cambridge and accommodation in Cambridge. This arrangement is dictated by the symposium funding structure. Excellent ensuite accommodation has been block booked within Robinson College at a preferential rate of £80 per night including breakfast, and those who require this can book at the same time of registration, on a first come first served basis.

Conference Registration Fees

Full Rate

Concessions *

Attending all three days 27-29 June 2018 including 
Conference Reception on 27 June, lunches on all
three days and suppers on 27 and 28 June



Day rate (per day)



* please contact Symposium convenors for eligibility under the funding rules.

The booking website will be launched shortly and we will circulate the weblink then. Because of the tightness of accommodation in Cambridge in the summer, we would encourage delegates to book early. If any delegates would have issues booking early, please contact us and we would be happy to assist as far as we can.

We have a modest fund to assist those authors who do not have funding for symposium registration, travel or accommodation. Those who would require financial assistance or have other queries please contact Steve Denman (

Symposium organisation

The event is hosted by the Martin Centre for Architectural and Urban Studies, Cambridge University (    

The Scientific Committee for AUM2018 consists of Prof Marcial Echenique, Prof Mike Batty, and Prof Michael Wegener. The Organising Committee of AUM2018 is led by Ying Jin (, Steve Denman ( and Tianren Yang (