Call for Papers: Atlanta Studies Symposium

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Abstracts due: 2/6/2015
Conference 5/6/2015

The third Atlanta Studies Symposium will bring together researchers examining Atlanta's social, cultural, economic and environmental issues on Wednesday 6 May 2015 in midtown Atlanta. Proposals are sought for presentations discussing empirical research under the theme, The Atlanta Way: Past, Present, and Future and should be submitted no later than Friday, February 6, 2015. 

This interdisciplinary meeting of scholars and activists, now in its third year, is organized by Emory University’s Center for Digital Scholarship, Georgia State University’s Cities Initiative and Department of Geosciences, and Georgia Tech’s schools of Architecture, Building Construction, City and Regional Planning, Civil and Environmental Engineering, History, Technology and Society, and Public Policy. The day-long symposium will be held at Georgia Tech’s Historic Academy of Medicine in midtown Atlanta.

Atlanta has long been portrayed as a city governed by a moderate, biracial coalition of business-oriented elites quietly collaborating around major initiatives - the so-called "Atlanta Way." In the current era, Atlanta faces a variety of challenges: the legacy of the foreclosure crisis and great recession; fragmentation of local government; congestion and sprawl; widening inequality; the challenge to embrace sustainable environmental practices; and the goal of providing quality public education. What is the nature of the challenges facing Atlanta? Are city life and public decision making still governed by the Atlanta Way, or will the future bring a new system of governance and civic engagement?

Proposals for papers, talks, multi-media presentations, or round-table discussions should be no more than 400 words. We welcome proposals on any aspect of Atlanta, past, present or future, but priority will be given to those that relate to the themes listed below and/or interdisciplinary panels focused on a single development initiative (e.g., Turner Field, the Falcons Stadium, Fort McPherson, the Beltline). Preference will also be given to proposals for fully constituted panels. Cover letters for panels should indicate the theme and identify panel participants. We hope to make this event as engaging as possible and encourage presentations that represent work-in-progress that will benefit from open conversation.  Please include audio-video requirements in your proposal.

Potential Themes for presentation topics include (but are not limited to):

- housing initiatives and community development
- poverty and income inequality
- mortgage lending, foreclosures, vacancy, and investor activity
- transportation and infrastructure
- urban design
- environment and resource management - economic development
- labor and unemployment
- land use/zoning

Selected papers presented at the 2015 Atlanta Studies Symposium will be invited to join an edited book project. To be fully considered for inclusion in the book, draft papers must be submitted by 1 April. Send your presentation proposals by 6 February via email to

Contact Elora Raymond at with questions.


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