Design History Society Annual Conference 2024

University for the Creative Arts

5-7 September 2024

Contact email: 


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Journal of Design History X



Borders are an ever more pressing issue in the 2020s. Whether geopolitical, human and non-human, or digital and physical, the solidification and liquification of borders raises questions around design's role in creating, undoing and negotiating divides.

The significance of borders today is highlighted by the interlaced ramifications of Brexit, Covid-19, international conflict, the climate emergency, the dissolution of colonial borders, gender binaries and the rise of polarising social media platforms. In this context it seems timely for design history to debate the implications of borders past, present and future.

The 2024 Design History Society (DHS) conference explores design’s role in borders and the effect of borders on design and asks how looking at borders and boundaries can help further design history more widely.

Submissions for the 2024 conference have closed and the peer review process is now complete. We were delighted to receive 140 submissions, and from these have selected a programme of 90 papers.

Download the programme.

Note: The programme is provisional and may change.

Call for Papers


Early Bird

  • Existing Members — £175.00
  • Existing Members Students and Concessions — £115.00
  • Non-Members — £290.00
  • Non-Member Students and Concessions — £230.00

The cut off for early bird registration is 31st May 2024.

Full Price

  • Existing Members — £200.00
  • Existing Student and Concession Members — £130.00
  • Non-Members — £315.00
  • Non-Member Students and Concessions — £245.00

The DHS 2024 conference will be taking place in person only.

Please click here for registration bookings.

There is an optional programme of study visits and tours on the morning of Thursday 5th September and a Gala Dinner on Friday 6th September. These must be booked separately from registration by clicking here.

Gala Dinner
Friday 6th September 2024
Westgate Hall

Please join us on Friday 6th September for the conference Gala Dinner. The evening will take place in Westgate Hall, an early twentieth-century former drill hall in the heart of Canterbury. The ticket covers a three-course sharing platter and buffet dinner (all vegetarian/vegan), and two bottles of wine per table. There will be a pay bar at the venue.

Cost: £65 

Canterbury Cathedral Tour
Thursday 5th September
Canterbury Cathedral (meet at main entrance)

A guided tour around this remarkable Gothic edifice, now part of the Canterbury UNESCO World Heritage Site. Founded in 597AD on the command of Pope Gregory by St Augustine, the complex has been expanded, destroyed and rebuilt over the centuries. Highlights include the fan vaulted cross tower, 55m long Quire, royal tombs and mediaeval stained glass. Led by official cathedral guides the tour, in groups of 15, will focus on the architectural history of the site and will last 90 minutes.

Cost: £20.50 

St Augustine’s Abbey Tour
Thursday 5th September
St Augustine’s Abbey (meet at main entrance)
10.30 – 12.00

A guided tour around the ruins of this Romanesque Abbey, also founded by St Augustine in 597AD to convert the English back to Christianity after the collapse of Roman rule. The tour includes the museum and the former Victorian St Augustine’s College, designed by William Butterfield in the 1840s. Led by an English Heritage tour guide in groups of 20, the tour lasts one hour.

Cost £12.50

Please note: Booking reserves your place, but you will need to pay the venue directly at the start of the tour.

Canterbury: a walk towards, on and around the walls
Thursday 5th September
Meet at entrance of UCA Canterbury main campus

A walking tour starting from the modernist University for the Creative Arts at Canterbury, originally opened in 1971 as Canterbury College of Art. The tour hugs the city wall and will take in Dane John Gardens and the Castle. It will then continue along the river before diving into the city itself with some of its more interesting buildings. Led by architect Daniel Stilwell of Charles Holland Architects, the tour lasts 90 minutes.

Cost £15

The Design History Society offers bursaries for DHS Students and/or precariously employed members. The bursary covers the DHS member concessionary conference fee. For more information please visit the Society’s website.

Travel and Accommodation

UCA Canterbury

Our campus at Canterbury is tucked away a short walk from the city centre, and has been the home of our School of Architecture and Design for more than 60 years. It’s also home to our fine art and visual communication courses. And it’s recently expanded, with the opening of the UCA Doctoral College – the base for our world-leading researchers – a short distance away. Registration and all the conference parallel sessions will take place at Rochester House. Keynote lectures will be in the Cragg Lecture Theatre on the main campus, a five-minute walk away.

Main Campus Rochester House

University for the Creative Arts
New Dover Road

Tel: +44 (0)1227 817 302

UCA Doctoral College
Rochester House
St George’s Place

Travelling by train:

Canterbury is served by two train stations: Canterbury West and Canterbury East. High Speed services to Canterbury West run hourly from London St Pancras (54 minutes) and London Stratford International (46 minutes).  

There are regular services to Canterbury East from London Victoria (1 hour 30 minutes) and Dover Priory (28 minutes).  

UCA Canterbury Campus is a 20-25 minute walk from Canterbury West station and a 15-minute walk from Canterbury East. Both stations have taxi ranks outside.  

If you are travelling to the UK via the Eurostar, you will arrive at London St Pancras where you can take a direct service to Canterbury West. 

Travelling by car:

Canterbury is served by the M2 motorway direct from London and the Port of Dover and has Park and Ride facilities located at Wincheap and New Dover Road (more information here). 

As there is no car parking available to guests on campus, we recommend that delegates do not drive to the conference itself unless there is a specific accessibility requirement. If you do have an accessibility requirement please contact the conference team in advance at

Should you wish to drive to Canterbury, the nearest public car park is Longport, which is a 5 minute walk from the conference.

Should you be staying outside of the city, Canterbury city council also offers a park and ride scheme.

International travel

International visitors can reach us using a variety of means:

Ferry: Port of Dover (20 minutes)

Eurostar: London St Pancras

London Airports: City, Gatwick, Heathrow and Stansted airports are all reachable via public transport or car.


There are a number of hotels in Canterbury city centre which are walking distance from the campus (CT1 3AN). Some nearby options include:

Hampton by Hilton Canterbury (11 minute walk). Hampton by Hilton is offering delegates a 10% discount. Please email conference administrator Liz Baxter at to be provided with the link.

Premier Inn Canterbury City Centre (1 minute walk)

Travelodge Canterbury Chaucer Central (5 minute walk)

Academic Committee


Executive Committee

JDH Editorial Board


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