Aims & Scope

Photo: Dennis Hill
Photo: Dennis Hill

Buildings and Cities is an international, open access, peer-reviewed, academic journal publishing high-quality research and analysis on the interplay between the different scales of the built environment: buildings, blocks, neighbourhoods, cities, national building stocks and infrastructures.

The journal focuses on built environment policy, practices and outcomes and the range of economic, environmental, political, social and technological issues occurring over the full life cycle.

It provides a platform for new ideas, innovative approaches and research-based insights that can help improve the built environment.

Buildings & Cities aims to make research accessible and relevant to academics, policymakers, practitioners, clients, and occupants.

Buildings & Cities' wide scope embraces:

  • SUSTAINABLE DEVELOPMENT GOALS (SDGs) & CLIMATE CHANGE: making cities, neighbourhoods and buildings inclusive, safe and resilient. Interactions with and impacts on: ecologies, biodiversity and ecosystem services; resource usage (land, water, air, energy, materials / mass flows); climate change (mitigation and adaptation, e.g. planning, design, management); transitions to low-carbon societies; carbon accounting / budgets; sustainable development (social, economic, environmental and natural capitals); regenerative development; circular economy, longevity and obsolescence; public health and wellbeing; public space and social inclusion; participatory planning and management; affordable housing; informal settlements; social justice (housing, rights to the city, land tenure, land use and value); resilience and long-term planning; urban development and land-use; urban density; urban morphology; spatial analysis; urban microclimates; rapid urbanisation; migration; links between urban, peri-urban and rural areas.
  • ENERGY: energy and urban morphology, energy performance, energy policy, energy demand, energy behaviours, energy efficiency, exergy, mass retrofits, energy and carbon metrics, zero carbon buildings, embodied energy, energy epidemiology, renewable energy, energy storage, energy transitions, space heating, space cooling, district heating, energy retrofits, control systems.
  • POLICY: urban governance; land use; density; resource consumption; well-being and public health; formulation and evaluation of public and institutional policies for buildings, neighbourhoods and cities; economic, environmental and social analysis of policies and regulations; policy outcomes; enforcement strategies; real estate market mechanisms; value capture; ‘big data’; research and innovation capabilities; knowledge and technology transfer; organisational structures and networks; (stakeholder) institutions and institutional change; engagement processes; building regulations, alternative regulatory strategies for climate and energy issues
  • PRACTICE, PERFORMANCE, OUTCOMES & IMPACTS: design, technical, social, organisational, and economic aspects of usability (fitness and adaptability); the performance and evaluation of urban areas, neighbourhoods and buildings; feedback loops; information access / sharing, including BIM, PoE and BPE data; the broad value and impacts of buildings, neighbourhoods, cities. Exploring the agency, capabilities, motivations and influence of public leaders, clients, professionals, urban citizens / inhabitants and others on decisions and outcomes over the project lifecycle. Professionalism, ethics, changing roles, professional services firms, public sector capabilities.
  • SOCIETAL DEMANDS & CAPABILITIES: Defining and exploring the changing demands and aspirations on urban and architectural development; understanding citizens/inhabitants’ desires, needs and behaviours; stakeholder participation, contractual agency, social justice/equity; value measurement and appropriation; performance of buildings and cities (as products and services); digital society: sensing, monitoring, control, AI and consumer services; stewardship and protection of societal interests; demographic changes, migration and urbanisation strategies.

Papers are published in the following formats:

  • Research articles (up to 8,000 words) present the latest research
  • Synthesis articles (up to 8,500 words) critically review the state of knowledge in key areas of interest
  • Methods articles (up to 5,000 words) describe the development of innovative research methods and practices; new ways of understanding research
  • Replication articles (up to 4,000 words) test previous findings and validate existing data sets. This can report on "failure" results. Registered reports are a submission option for replication studies, with peer review of the research design prior to the data collection.
  • Policy Analysis articles (up to 3,000 words) put forward evidence-based analysis of particular policy approaches
  • Briefing Notes (up to 2,500 words) make research results and their implications on key built environment topics accessible to the end users of research: policymakers, practitioners, clients or occupants.

Peer Review Statement

All manuscript submissions are subject to initial appraisal by the Editors, and, if found suitable for further consideration, to double-blind peer review by independent, anonymous expert referees.  Further changes may be required in response to the reviewer’s comments and suggestions.  In all instances the Editor’s decision on publication is final.

Transparency, Open Data & Ethics

Authors of published research must comply with BUILDINGS & CITIES’ approach to standards of transparency.  These include:

  • Citation standards: Authors are required to provide appropriate citation for others’ intellectual content, data and materials following this journal's author guidelines
  • Data transparency:Data must be posted to a trusted repository.  Exceptions must be identified at article submission.
  • Analytic methods: Methods (including code / algorithms) must be posted to a trusted repository. Exceptions must be identified at article submission.
  • Design & analysis transparency: Journal requires adherence to design transparency standards for review and publication.
  • Study & analysis preregistration:Authors must state whether preregistration of study or analytical procedure exists and, if so, where to access it.
  • Ethics: The research conforms with international human rights and ethical requirements of relevant research bodies, professional institutions and the author's organisation.

Latest Peer-Reviewed Journal Content

Journal Content

An alternative approach to delivering safe, sustainable surgical theatre environments
C A Short, A W Woods, L Drumright, R Zia & N Mingotti

Adapting owner-occupied dwellings in the UK: lessons for the future
T Hipwood

Integrating low energy cooling & ventilation strategies in Indian residences
M J Cook, Y Shukla, R Rawal, C Angelopoulos, L Caruggi-De-Faria, D Loveday, E Spentzou, & J Patel

Balconies as adaptable spaces in apartment housing
T Peters & S Masoudinejad

Inclusive Living: ageing, adaptations and future-proofing homes
V McCall

Residential geothermal air-conditioning: inhabitants’ comfort, behaviour and energy use
L Thomas, A Woods, R Powles, P Kalali, & S Wilkinson

Energy retrofit and passive cooling: overheating and air quality in primary schools
D Grassie, Y Schwartz, P Symonds, I Korolija, A Mavrogianni & D Mumovic

Outdoor PM2.5 air filtration: optimising indoor air quality and energy
E Belias & D Licina

Architects’ ‘enforced togetherness’: new design affordances of the home
E Marco, M Tahsiri, D Sinnett & S Oliveira

Overheating assessment in Passivhaus dwellings: the influence of prediction tools
V L Goncalves, V Costanzo, K Fabbri & T Rakha

The use of apartment balconies: context, design & social norms
M Smektała & M Baborska-Narożny

Sharing a home under lockdown in London
F Blanc & K Scanlon

Projected climate data for building design: barriers to use
P Rastogi, A Laxo, L Cecil &D Overbey

Residents’ views on adaptable housing: a virtual reality-based study
J Tarpio & S Huuhka

Technological transitions in climate control: lessons from the House of Lords
Henrik Schoenefeldt

Internal thermal mass for passive cooling and ventilation: adaptive comfort limits, ideal quantities, embodied carbon
T de Toldi, S Craig & L Sushama

Understanding air-conditioned lives: qualitative insights from Doha
Russell Hitchings

Living with air-conditioning: experiences in Dubai, Chongqing & London
N Murtagh, S Badi, Y Shi, S Wei, W Yu

Air-conditioning in New Zealand: power and policy
H Byrd, S Matthewman & E Rasheed

Summertime overheating in UK homes: is there a safe haven?
P Drury, S Watson & K J Lomas

Survey study on energy use in UK homes during Covid-19
G M Huebner, N E Watson, K Direk, E McKenna, E Webborn, F Hollick, S Elam & T Oreszczyn

Ceiling-fan-integrated air-conditioning: thermal comfort evaluations
M Luo, H Zhang, Z Wang, E Arens, W Chen, F S Bauman & P Raftery

The future of IEQ in green building certifications
D Licina, P Wargocki, C Pyke & S Altomonte

Architectural form: flexibility, subdivision and diversity in Manhattan loft buildings
C S Kayatekin

The significance of urban systems on sustainability and public health [editorial]
J Taylor & P Howden-Chapman

Empowered by planning law: unintended outcomes in the Helsinki region
A Joutsiniemi, M Vaattovaara & J Airaksinen

Climate change projections for sustainable and healthy cities
C Goodess, S Berk, S B Ratna, O Brousse, M Davies, C Heaviside, G Moore & H Pineo

Retrofit at scale: accelerating capabilities for domestic building stocks [editorial]
F Wade & H J Visscher

See all

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