SBSE Endorses Buildings & Cities + Call for Articles

Buildings & Cities

Out of the ashes of BRI, a new phoenix arises. The former editors and editorial board members of BRI have created a new journal, entitled Buildings & Cities (B&C). The editorial team is Richard Lorch, Faye Wade, Ray Cole, Niklaus Kohler, Sofie Pelsmakers and Fionn Stevenson. They bring a strong track record of experience, integrity, and achievement.

"There are some important differences: the new journal is independent (not owned by a big publisher) and it is not-for-profit (no shareholders). This stance is because we recognise and honour the efforts invested by our authors and reviewers. It strikes us as fundamentally wrong for others to make financial gain from your work. Therefore, any eventual surplus is either put back into the journal’s activities or will be given as small grants to the research community. We are open-access (no paywalls) and will use a Creative Commons BY license. We will endeavour to include those authors (particularly from least developed countries) who do not have institutional funding.

An important remit is in B&C’s Aims and Scope: in addition to research on buildings, there is a new focus on the dynamic interplay between the different scales of the built environment—region, infrastructure, city, building stocks, neighbourhood, street and site/building. Increasingly, sustainable development requires us to understand these complex interactions and their scalability. Of course, we will also continue to publish articles about the building scale, user interfaces, wellbeing and health, human development, and appropriate thermal conditions. B&C will address fragmentation—of disciplinary boundaries and responsibilities, of regulation and governance, of research and practice. Understanding how these elements interact is critical for meeting the current challenges we face in policy and practice.

We will continue to have a rigorous, fair and robust double-blind peer review system. B&C welcomes cutting-edge transdisciplinary research articles and proposals for special issues. We’ve expanded the categories of papers that we publish to include research, synthesis, methods, replication, and policy analysis. In addition to these categories, we will also publish briefing articles, commentaries, news and book reviews."

Calls for papers have been announced for two special issues—details on the journal's web site:

Please spread the word to those who might be interested.

"SBSE has endorsed Buildings & Cities. We’re delighted and honoured to be part of your community. We look forward to working with you as authors, reviewers, and readers!" 

— Richard Lorch

Publishing Opportunities—Two Calls

Special Issue of Buildings & Cities — Climate Justice:
The Role of the Built Environment

Guest editors: Anna Mavrogianni (UCL) and Sonja Klinsky (ASU)

As the built environment is at the heart of the lives of people and communities and is central to climate adaptation and mitigation, a deeper understanding of the justice implications of efforts to change or maintain the built environment in the context of climate change is essential. You are invited to submit abstracts to this special issue of Buildings & Cities journal.

This special issue will specifically explore the roles that the different scales of the built environment play in the climate change and inequity nexus. It seeks to examine the full implications of the built environment on social inequities and human development in the context of climate change: how might climate change or climate policies exacerbate these problems, what the scale of this implication is likely to be, and what policies, strategy solutions, resources, and capabilities may be required to manage these concerns within and between countries.

Full details about the scope of the special issue, the background, full range of topics, information about submitting abstracts and timeline can be found at

The Closing Date for ABSTRACTS is 15 JUL 2019.

Special Issue of Buildings & Cities—Carbon Metrics for Buildings and Cities:
ross-scalar Assessment & Control of GHGs

Guest editor: Thomas L├╝tzkendorf (Karlsruhe Institute of Technology)

This special issue goes substantially beyond the calculation of embodied and lifetime energy/CO2, to explore:

  1. what should be the appropriate units of assessment and how these could operate across different scales (building, neighbourhood, city, region) of the built environment
  2. how units of assessment could operate across different scales  (building, neighbourhood, city, region) for each country’s/region’s built environment
  3. how units of assessment for the built environment can engage with the Nationally Determined Contributions (NDCs) and the more recent commitment to limiting global warming to 1.5°C or less.

This special issue explores questions such as:

  • Is there a need for carbon metrics and benchmarks or target values that can be used widely? Should there be regional variations?
  • Would the creation of carbon metric(s) for the built environment help to accelerate the societal goal of reducing GHG emissions? 
  • How would these measures assist with the development of public policies and regulation?
  • How would these measures improve planning, design, construction, operation and retrofit of buildings, neighbourhoods and cities (top-down and bottom-up approaches)? 

Full details about the scope of the special issue, its background, full range of topics, information about submitting abstracts and timeline can be found at

The Closing Date for ABSTRACTS is  26 SEP 2019.

—Richard Lorch