Time to Change the Game

Call for Game Changer presentations graphic
The call for presentations is now open for these fast-paced, innovative talks at the 2021 ASLA Conference on Landscape Architecture. Submit by September 9.

Do you have an idea that will change the field of landscape architecture? Here’s your opportunity to share it at the ASLA Conference on Landscape Architecture.

We’re seeking presentations for game-changing ideas that can move a profession forward—ideas from different perspectives, voices, and backgrounds. Those big ideas could come from you. You don’t need to present on-the-boards projects—just your big idea!

Game Changer sessions are designed to be fast-paced, innovative talks. Presenters will have just seven minutes to share your game changing idea.

The deadline for presentation proposals is noon PT on Thursday, September 9, 2021.

No matter your speaking experience, this is a great opportunity to share ideas and concepts under development that will drive innovation. Submissions from first-time presenters, students, emerging professionals, and allied professionals are strongly encouraged.

What you need to enter:

  • Your information: Tell us about yourself.
  • Short description: Pitch this presentation in two sentences. How will your idea change the field?
  • Video: Submit a short (one-minute), cell phone-quality video describing your Game Changer session. No fancy production required. Most importantly, have fun with it! The video must be under one-minute to be eligible.

Eligibility and registration:

  • Landscape architecture professionals (graduates of a landscape architecture program recognized by ASLA) and landscape architecture students wishing to present at the ASLA 2021 Conference on Landscape Architecture must be active members of ASLA.
  • Selected Game Changer presenters will receive 30% off a full registration to the 2021 Conference.
  • Allied professionals are encouraged to both submit and speak, but they are not required to be members of ASLA.

To help you get started, the ASLA Professional Practice Networks leadership teams have created a list of inspirational game changer topics that you might consider exploring.

Campus Planning & Design

  • What’s one silver lining from COVID that has changed how campus open spaces are used—and is it here to stay? COVID has changed how open spaces are planned and used. What will future open spaces look like?

Children’s Outdoor Environments

  • What do you hope for this and for future generations of children and their relationship with nature?
  • What do you see as the most challenging issue that’s preventing children from fully embracing nature?

Community Design

  • The COVID-19 pandemic has brought new challenges for effective public engagement. Share your community design success stories of leveraging online tools for equitable and responsible community engagement.

Design-Build / Residential Landscape Architecture

  • How do you deal with the financial opportunities and risk involved
    with being a design-build contractor?
  • The design-build delivery method continues to grow. How can
    design-build companies be set up so that they are landscape architect-forward?
  • How can ASLA support and mentor licensed design-build

Digital Technology

  • How can digital technology aid in the challenges of this century (i.e., global warming, social and environmental equity, etc.)?
  • What are innovative ways small firms are implementing emerging technologies with efficient resources and budgets (i.e., drones, AR, VR, BIM, etc.)?

Ecology & Restoration

  • What new technologies, materials, or novel disciplinary collaborations, or other tried-and-true tools and approaches, are enhancing landscape architects’ ability to restore ecological function in urban landscapes or other settings?

Education & Practice

  • What are alternative paths to becoming a professional landscape architect and what is the role of practice and academia? How can the industry rethink how we bring people into the profession, reducing barriers and diversifying the field?

Environmental Justice

  • How can justice, diversity, equity, and inclusion be accounted for in landscape architecture projects and in our daily practice?
  • How can we meaningfully engage with communities in the design process?

Healthcare & Therapeutic Design

  • How has the design of gardens, green spaces, and public spaces in healthcare settings—general hospitals, community clinics, senior living facilities—been shaped by COVID-19?
  • How can we design green open spaces as public health interventions, particularly for the medically underserved population?

Historic Preservation

  • How do you embed justice, equity, diversity and inclusion (JEDI) in historic preservation design and planning?

International Practice

  • How has COVID forever changed the structure of international practice and delivery of projects across borders?

Landscape—Land Use Planning

  • What is the future of equitable land use planning?
  • How will the demands of climate adaptation and mitigation change
    large-scale and long-range land planning efforts in the next decade?

Parks & Recreation

  • Level of service standards can help ensure all residents have equal opportunity to share in the basic services of park and recreation facilities throughout a community. What are innovative strategies used to assess and measure the need for park and recreation facilities and programs related to equity, sustainability, and resilience?

Planting Design

  • Urban agriculture can build more equitable, healthy, and sustainable food systems. How are designers, communities, or organizations improving urban agriculture and integrating it into green infrastructure frameworks?
  • How can we increase the resilience of landscapes and respond to climate change, including but not limited to precipitation and temperature fluctuations, through planting design?

Sustainable Design & Development

  • How can we work together as a profession to decarbonize our work?


  • What’s your game changer for bringing equity into transportation design decisions or promoting streets as public space for all users?
  • Imagine a typical roadway section of the future. What changes to current design standards are needed to build roads that meet future needs?

Urban Design

  • How can social equity be addressed through urban design?
  • How can urban design address mental health within our cities?
  • How do we create resilient urban landscapes in the future?

Water Conservation

  • We’re all familiar with green roofs, rain gardens, bioswales, and green streets—what’s a new stormwater feature that could transform how water is handled?

Women in Landscape Architecture

  • How can landscape architecture level the playing field for women in the profession—what can firms do to support women and families?
  • How have friendship, mentorship, and sponsorship shaped your career path?

For even more inspiration, check out the 2020 Game Changers, on topics ranging from public schools as ecological restoration sites to re-framing demolition through a recycled materials sourcing network.

Presentations for the conference will be selected by popular vote. Learn more about the online submission and review process, and submit your Game Changer before September 9.

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