ISSN: 1834-6057

Conference: Archipelagos and Aquapelagos – Conceptualising Islands and Marine Spaces

The Pratt Institute, Brooklyn, New York March 30th-April 1st 2018

The prominence of water in the shaping of contemporary cities has foregrounded the idea of the Aquapelago* as an increasingly influential conceptual framework. The Aquapelago is loosely understood to be the integrated uses of marine and terrestrial spaces for livelihood purposes. The clarity of discussions around Aquapelagos has pointed to the need to re-investigate and re-conceptualise the nature of the aggregations of islands commonly referred to as Archipelagos in order to produce more sophisticated understandings of them, of how humans inhabit them and the environmental, social and transnational issues and impacts involved. Archipelagos have become increasingly prominent in geo-political contexts with regard to national territorial boundaries, global migrancy and disputes over fisheries.

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** The call for papers has now closed. ** We invite papers interested in the conjunctures between water bound societies and their ecological habitats. Exploring the interstices between the Aquapelago and the Archipelago, we are interested in thinking and research that investigate the connectivities between islands, marine spaces and social life. We see topics of global sea migrations, economic and social impact of island tourism, coastal redesign, urban rethinking, exterritoriality and sovereignty as themes impacting water bound societies today and particularly relevant to our inquiry.

Keynote Speakers:

  • Philip Hayward (Editor of Shima, University of Technology Sydney)
  • May Joseph (Pratt Institute, Brooklyn)

Conference Organizers:

  • May Joseph, Professor of Social Science, Pratt Institute,
  • Luka Lucic, Assistant Professor of Social Science, Pratt Institute,
  • Macarena Gomez-Barris, Professor of Social Science, Pratt Institute

For enquiries, contact

The event will be supported and hosted by the Pratt Institute and there will be no registration costs for the event.

Formal sessions will take part on March 30th and 31st with an optional (free of charge) research visit to New York Island locations on April 1st.

Presenters will be invited to submit extended versions of their presentations for publication in a special theme issue of the journal Shima.

[* a series of articles on the concept of the aquapelago are archived online at: ]