Symposia and Workshops

The internationally oriented symposia serve to discuss key questions and safeguard the results of the postdoctoral tandems sponsored by the Research Training Group for two years. For this purpose, international experts are invited to the interdisciplinary topics and thereby complement the topic area, which is being worked on by the postdoctoral researchers, with their own viewpoints and disciplinary perspectives. Above all, the symposia seek to intensify the discourse between the engineering and humanities on specific research topics, thereby contributing to their interdisciplinary positioning. The results of the symposia will be published in the publication series of the Research Training Group at Birkhäuser Verlag.

The workshops are launched on the initiative of the doctoral students of the DFG Research Training Group and serve to enrich the respective research projects by incorporating new research perspectives, comparatively analysing sources and materials and involving further partners in the work of the Research Training Group. The workshops, which are held as half-day or full-day events, are led by the doctoral students and focus on key questions that arise from the individual doctoral projects.

Universal Approaches in Local Circumstances: A Series of Discussions on the Policy-Practice Gaps in Urban Conservation Online series of moderated discussions in November/December 2021

Today, urban conservation scholarship calls for case studies that problematise universal conservation principles in local planning circumstances, particularly in countries from which modern conservation has not originated. In this series of workshops, we discuss singularities of urban conservation and the protection of historic urban areas with local experts who have been directly involved in processes of putting conservation policy documents into practice. We discuss how the planned goals of conservation projects are influenced by unplanned factors such as war, economic and political instability, inter-organizational conflicts, and natural hazards.

The discussed cases are areas in cities with non-western cultural backgrounds that are geographically and culturally interconnected. By discussing urban conservation issues in Ankara, Baghdad, Tehran, Shiraz, Yazd, Chabahar, Herat, and Mumbai, we aim to reflect on the functionality of mainstream conservation approaches in local conditions.

The speakers share their insight into obstacles of realising the international conservation models under rapidly changing natural and socio-political conditions. The workshops' moderators are outstanding young academics who have a deep understanding of the discussed issues and have co-planned the sessions with the speakers.

This series of events is cooperatively organized by the Chair Urban Management and the DFG Training Group 1913 “Cultural and Technological Significance of Historic Buildings” in the framework of the DFG project “Assembling Iran's Urban Heritage Conservation Policy and Practice: Problematised in Tehran”.
Conceptual and Academic Coordination:
Solmaz Yadollahi, Ph.D. (Postdoctoral fellow at the Chair of Urban Management and the DFG Training Group 1913, BTU)
Coordination and Moderation of the Sessions:
Dr. Azadeh Arjomand Kermani (Department of Cultural Geography, University of Wageningen)
Dr. Fawzia Asadi (Department of Architecture, University of Baghdad)
Bahareh Azhadari M.A., PhD candidate (Department of Architectural and Urban Heritage Conservation, University of Tehran)
Shraddha Bhatawadekar M.A., PhD candidate (DFG Research Training Group 1913, BTU)
Farnaz Faraji M.A., PhD candidate (Heriland (ITN) Marie-Curie program, Newcastle University and University of Tehran)
Farnaz Mohseni M.A., PhD candidate (Heritage Studies, BTU)
Hadi Naderi M.A., PhD candidate (School of Architecture, University of Tehran)
Dr. Marvin Ravan (The Institute of Spatial and Regional Planning, University of Stuttgart)
Nilgün Rengin Sazak M.A., PhD candidate (DFG Research Training Group 1913, BTU)
Reza Sharifi M.A., PhD candidate (Heritage Studies, BTU)
Dr. Solmaz Yadollahi (BTU)

International Symposium “The Making of Identity through Rural Space: Scenarios, Experiences and Contestations in the Rural Built Environment”

2829 October 2021, online

Rural space has played a substantial role in several social, cultural, economic, and ideological transformations through time. Such transformations are being studied through various scientific concepts. Among others, the implementation of new concepts that focus on shaping identities through the reproduction of spatial agents belonging to rural communities by direct and indirect political interventions remains crucial to grasp a broad understanding of these particular changes.

However, studies on the formation of identity through space have been primarily handled in the frame of urban studies until recent years. Yet, the various identity-making practices have certainly had significant influences on and through the rural built environment. In this symposium, we reopen the discussion of the making of identity in rural areas, which have dramatically changed under different political, social, and economic conditions from the verge of the 20th century until today, and potential contested spaces as traces of this process. We thereby seek a better in-depth understanding of spatial dynamics related to the specific cultural and social spheres of 20th’s century rurality.

The symposium will take place as an online event, starting with an evening lecture on Thursday, 28 October.

Concept and organisation: Vera Egbers (vera.egbers(at) and Özge Sezer (oezge.sezer(at)

To register for the event, please send an email to vera.egbers(at)