AHC: Call for Spring 2021 Conference Lightning Talks

Call for Lighting Talk Presentations

AHC Spring Conference: Resiliency Through Emotional Well-Being and Mental Health
April 22 & 23, 2021 – Virtual


This year’s AIA AHC Spring Event includes two days of virtual interdisciplinary presentations, design case studies, and conversations around how we can address design and construction resiliency, while maintaining an ever-present focus on emotional well-being and mental health for all occupants. How we can overcome obstacles and challenges that prevent us from truly wholistic and resilient design in healthcare environments? How do we measure the environmental, economic, and psychological value of regulation, manage risk, and keep humans at the center of design? On April 22nd and 23rd we welcome AEC and healthcare professionals to join us at this dynamic program.


The AHC Spring Event audience includes: Architects, Designers, Engineers, Contractors, Healthcare Practitioners and Policymakers, Facility Owners/Managers, Urban Designers and Planners, and Public Health Professionals. The planning task force welcomes emerging professionals to the program, as their partnership is central to defining a sustainable future.


Submission Deadline: March 17, 2021 

We seek to convene a series of short “lightning” talk presentations (think PechaKucha format) that will deepen the audience’s understanding of current research and design innovations driving towards a focus on:

  • Community
  • Mental health
  • Well-being
  • Jobsite Safety
  • Resiliency
  • Wholistic healthcare environments

Lightning Talks are an opportunity to share ideas and concepts under development and pushing the bounds of convention. We welcome a diversity of proposals from a variety of disciplines deploying design thinking to build a brighter future and strongly encourage emerging professionals and young designers to propose.


Proposals should specifically address innovation in the context of healthcare or healthcare environments. Possible subtopics are included below, but the list is not comprehensive, and should not limit submitters.

  • Innovative planning or design strategies that improve health outcomes.
  • Processes or techniques that integrate disaster preparedness into design (eg. wildfire, earthquakes, active shooter, pandemic).
  • Implementation of innovative techniques or technologies for jobsite and occupant safety.
  • Methodologies for measuring and monitoring care during construction.
  • Integrating mental health of patient care providers in design.
  • Aging infrastructure, system redundancy, and the level of resiliency required.
  • Integrating wellness technology into patient care and staff care.
  • Systems solutions addressing present and future pandemic preparedness and vaccine distribution.


Lightning talk presentations are short, and should be no more than seven (7) minutes in length. Inspired by PechaKucha’s concise format, presentations must limit their slides (number of slides may vary), and set them to advance automatically.

Standard audio, visual, and digital media will be supported.

Presenters must submit their final PowerPoint presentation files to AHC no later than 5:00pm PST on Thursday, April 15th. A PowerPoint template will be provided in advance, and late presentations will not be accepted.

We encourage presenters to use the following questions as a guide to preparing their short talks:

  • WHAT is the INNOVATION that your lightning talk will focus on? Is it a process, a tool, a product, a space, an interaction, etc.?
  • WHY the innovation? Identify the problem or challenge that prompted the innovation.
  • HOW was the innovation developed, tested, implemented in the context of healthcare environments?
  • WHO were the stakeholders in research, funding, implementation, etc.? Who was impacted by the innovation? Who was required to embrace the change and/or assume the risks?


Lightning talk proposals will be evaluated by the AIA Seattle AHC Board Members with AIA staff. Successful proposals will:

  • Align with the event theme and objectives
  • Deepen audience understanding of a particular design innovation
  • Offer fresh insight and relevant information through the combination of words and visuals

Speakers should be able to effectively communicate messages to a variety of audience members. While relevant examples of innovation projects can be used for presentation (and credit given to the appropriate individuals/teams), the lightning talk sessions are not a platform for marketing a person or firm’s portfolio, services, or, strategies. Preference will be given to proposals by emerging professionals and young designers.


Please complete the submission form linked below by 5:00pm on March 17, 2021. Late submissions will not be accepted.

Click here to submit

Schedule and Deadlines

  • March 4, 2021: Call for lightning talks goes out
  • March 17, 2021: Proposals due
  • April 1, 2021: Acceptances issued
  • April 15, 2021: Final PowerPoint presentations due to AHC Committee
  • April 22 or 23, 2021: Presentations at 2021 AIA AHC Spring Event: Resiliency Through Emotional Well-Being and Mental Health 8am – 12pm both days. NOTE: Exact date and time of presentation TBD pending finalization of conference schedule.


Free registration is offered to all presenters who want to attend the full 2-day AIA AHC Spring Event. Please be advised that presenters will be responsible for their travel, lodging and any other expenses and arrangements.


Please address any questions to:

Architecture for Health Committee
Spring Event Committee