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Selected speakers will gain visibility, establish credibility, and position themselves as an expert in their profession. Providers are welcome to submit multiple proposals, and speakers may appear in multiple sessions during the conference. No more than three (3) proposals will be selected for presentation from any one (1) provider. 

Presentation proposals with speakers who represent multiple disciplines (designers, planners, contractors, lawyers, owners, etc.) will receive special consideration. Presentations are limited to four (4) speakers. Please confirm that all speakers are available during the conference dates before submitting a proposal. Speakers must notify Aspire of any change in title or place of employment so that we can continue to publish accurate information about the conference in print and on the web. 

All selected speakers will receive one complimentary full conference registration to enjoy all Aspire sessions and events. Up to two (2) speakers per session will receive a travel stipend to attend and present at the conference. Details to be confirmed in the Speaker Agreement sent to all selected speakers.

Presentations can relate to any aspect of architecture, planning, landscape architecture, technology, the built environment, and practice management. Topics may address local, urban, suburban, regional, national and global issues. Successful presentations will meet the continuing education needs of building and design professionals by providing information that is relevant to the present and future of an ever-changing industry.

The conference will consider presentations that fit at least one of the following overall themes or "tracks":

  • Community: public interest, placemaking and ecological urbanism
  • Health: healthcare, biophilic design, building performance
  • Housing: net-zero, multigenerational, and aging in place
  • Resilience: environmental, cultural, and hazard mitigation

Speakers are also encouraged to address one or both of the following themes in their presentations: 

  • Leadership: practice management, mentorship, and integrated practice
  • Equity: workplace, universal design, environmental justice

Additionally, presenters are asked to consider how their presentation engages Emerging Professionals* (one or more speakers is an EP, topic is relevant to EPs, presentation addresses one or more EP issues).

*Emerging Professionals are students, recent graduates, professionals working to become architects and architects licensed less than 10 years, the future of the profession of architecture and an important component of our ASPIRE audience.

Example topics

  • Applied design research
  • Building performance/sustainability
  • Design for aging
  • Disaster response and recovery
  • Ecological urbanism/placemaking
  • Equity, diversity and inclusion
  • Impact design
  • Integrated practice
  • Intersection of architecture and urban design
  • Public interest design
  • Resilience
  • The space between buildings
  • Social and cultural influences on design
  • Technological and environmental influences 

Submission criteria
Below is a preview of information and uploads required to complete your submission: 

  1. Presentation title
  2. Conference theme
  3. Description of theme relevance
  4. Session abstract (200 words, max.)
  5. Brief session description to appear on website (50 words, max.)
  6. Talk format description (500 words, max.)
  7. Chat format description (500 words, max.)
  8. Post-conference value
  9. Audience engagement & experience level
  10. Program delivery method
  11. Program outline
  12. CEU credits & learning objectives (click here for guide on writing learning objectives)
  13. Speaker bio (100 words)
  14. Speaker expertise in presentation topic
  15. Speaker headshot 

Selection process
Presentations will be evaluated based on:

  • Well-defined proposal focus
  • Overall quality and potential to contribute to a well-balanced conference agenda
  • Course instructional level (beginner, intermediate, or advanced) and type of attendee interaction
  • Practical application of material or content
  • Experience of speaker(s)
  • Eligibility for Health, Safety, Welfare as defined by AIA Continuing Education System
  • Eligibility for Continuing Education Hours for architects, planners, engineers, landscape architects and other professions

Additional tips

  • Use clear, concise language in describing your presentation. 
  • Offer your presentation at an intermediate/advanced level. 
  • Propose a presentation that is new.
  • Be creative with the format of the 2nd part of your presentation (Chat) 
  • Avoid making a sales pitch for a company, product, and/or publication.
  • Provide all requested information to avoid disqualification.


Click below to begin your submission.