7th ITRA World Congress, Braga 23,24,25 July 2014

Conference Theme

The overarching theme of the conference is the relationship between toys and language & communication. All play media and play instruments are included in the concept of “toys” ranging from playgrounds and playscapes to electronic devices. A broad scope of approaches has been encouraged from the technological, social sciences and the humanities.

The Call for Papers can be found here.

Braga 2014 Conference Themes

While the dominant theme of the 7th World Congress is "Toys as Language and Communication", other topics pertaining to toys are also welcome.

All play media and play objects are included in the concept of "toys". The relevance of toys in the development of language and communication is high. Toys and playing with toys relates to many issues of establishing human relations and building social interactions and therefore they are inextricably linked to the history of human civilization. In fact, it remains an important task to analyse and understand toys as instruments fostering well-being, interaction and knowledge. Thus, the connection between toys and other elements of communication and language can be seen as an inevitable theme for toy researchers.

Language in its different features and modalities is a research subject in Communication Sciences. We therefore address verbal and non-verbal language as a means to foster and evidence human intelligence as well as human communicative and social skills.

Toys promote language development as well as communication. Toys and playing with toys are also significant on a practical level: from language development to education, health, therapy, art, craftsmanship, design and engineering.

Papers, panels and poster sessions are especially invited on any of the following congress themes:

1 - Toys, signs and meanings
2 - Toys as verbal and non-verbal language
3 - Toys, narratives and metaphors
4 - Toys as texts in spatial, historical and socio-cultural contexts
5 - Toys creativity and design
6 - Toys, gender and generations
7 - Toys, education, health and environment
8 - Toys and media: production, marketing, advertising and consumption
9 - Toys, games and new technologies

To submit a paper, symposium or poster

If you would like to present a paper, organize a symposium or present a poster please submit the requested abstract or proposal, in English, before 15 December 2013  20 February [NEW Deadline]. Submissions should be sent to Luisa Magalhães at itra2014abstracts@gmail.com

Papers will be limited to 30 minutes, including time for questions and comments. If you would like to present a paper, please submit a one-page abstract, in English, by 15 December 2013   20 February 2014 [NEW Deadline].

Symposia will be limited to 2 hours, with three or four presentations on a common theme. Proposals should contain the title of the symposium and abstracts of presentations along with the names, affiliations and email addresses of the chairperson and each contributor. Each proposal should include an overview of the session not to exceed 350 words. Deadline 15 December 2013  20 February 2014 [NEW Deadline].

Posters should be suitable for presentation. Poster sessions usually do not occupy congress time and take place during the coffee breaks. Their duration should be limited to 20 minutes. If you would like to present a poster, please submit a one-page abstract, in English, by 15 December 2013  20 February 2014 [NEW Deadline].

The scientific committee will review your abstract or proposal for its suitability to the congress. You will receive a reply in late March 2014.

Participants must register for the congress prior to the deadline of 30 April 2014 in order to take advantage of the early registration fee.

Braga - the City and environs

Braga, situated in North Portugal at 50 km from Porto, is a fine city for holding a congress because it is rather small with fewer than 200.000 inhabitants, has a well-developed infrastructure, a particular atmosphere and much to offer to visitors on a historical, architectural and gastronomic level as well as on the level of leisure and entertainment. It is nice wandering around the centre of Braga with its many historic buildings and churches in Renaissance, Baroque and Rococo styles and this without having to use public or private transport. There are also some fine gardens such as the "Santa Barbara Gardens" with nearby medieval walls of the Archbishop's palace. In the large pedestrian area one finds cheap restaurants with open air service serving good food and wine such as the famous Vinho Verde. Even the bookshops are special as they not only sell books but also serve homemade coffee and cakes. A remarkable fountain in the Praça da Republica offers a light and music show.

This town with its young population received in 2012 the title of European Youth Capital. At the same time it is a really ancient town which about 250 BC became the capital of the Roman Galicia region. Those who need some rest and would like to discover a nearby green area should visit the hilly Bom Jesus Sanctuary and its park. To reach the 400m high area there are many stairs to climb but one can also take the Hydraulic Elevator, an experience, and walk down the stairs. From Bom Jesus the visitor will enjoy a splendid view of Braga and the whole region.

View Larger Map
You can also access this map at Braga Map


Braga - Accommodation

In order to make your reservation safer and more comfortable the Organization and the Abreu Travel Agency have selected a list of hotels with special prices for the congress participants. Please contact Catarina Aguiar (Agência Abreu) in case you have any further queries concerning the hotel reservation process.

Please send your hotel reservation directly to the email address indicated below:
A/C Catarina Aguiar

Phone: 351 253 200540
Email : caguiar@abreu.pt
URL: www.abreu.pt

NameStarTypeExtrasCost per night
Melia Hotel & Spa5SingleBreakfast€80
Hotel do Elevador4SingleBreakfast€65
Golden Tulip Hotel4DoubleBreakfast€65
Hotel Mercure Centro4SingleBreakfast€64
Hotel Bracara Augusta4SingleBreakfast€63
Hotel do Templo4SingleRoom only€60
Youth Hostel Braga(1)-DoubleBreakfast€27

(1) Please note that Agência Abreu are not making bookings for the Youth Hostel. Bookings should be made via the Pousadas de Juventude website indicated.

Note: Prices quoted are subject to change without notice.


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