ICAADE 2017 will unite academics, practitioners, professionals and policymakers in the exchange of knowledge on amphibious flood mitigation strategies, inviting collaboration among researchers, business, institutions, and governments around the world. Flood mitigation and climate change adaptation will require the development of new housing types and retrofit strategies in order to maintain community integrity in populated regions where flooding is expected to increase.

The conference will encourage collaboration among architects, planners, builders, researchers, engineers, and participants from government and industry, representing a broad range of disciplines such as water management, urban and landscape design, architectural design, hydrology, engineering, social sciences, humanities, building construction and codification, education and health, and experts from such fields as commerce, policy, information systems, knowledge management and insurance.

There will be a Student Design Workshop, to be held during the week prior to the ICAADE conference, as well as a post-conference Policy Symposium scheduled for June 29-30.  The goal of the Policy Symposium is to initiate an international discussion of the pressing issues related to government policies, insurance regulations and building codes that so affect our work, and to begin to formulate recommendations.

The inaugural International Conference on Amphibious Architecture, Design and Engineering (ICAADE 2015) was held from August 26-29, 2015, at Arsom Silp Institute of the Arts in Bangkok, Thailand. ICAADE 2015 brought together participants from a wide range of disciplines from across the globe. The conference included 57 participants from 17 countries, with 68 papers delivered in plenary and parallel sessions. For further information, the ICAADE 2015 website can be accessed here.

ICAADE 2017 will be held at the University of Waterloo in Ontario, Canada, from June 25 to 28, 2017.


Amphibious architecture refers to an alternative flood mitigation strategy that allows an otherwise-ordinary structure to float on the surface of rising floodwater rather than succumb to inundation. An amphibious foundation retains a home's connection to the ground by resting firmly on the earth under usual circumstances, yet it allows a house to float as high as necessary when flooding occurs. A buoyancy system beneath the house displaces water to provide flotation as needed, and a vertical guidance system allows the rising and falling house to return to exactly the same place upon descent. Amphibious architecture is a flood mitigation strategy that works in synchrony with a floodprone region's natural cycles of flooding, rather than attempting to obstruct them.

Amphibious construction may also refer to one of several "hybrid" conditions. One such is where the weight of a structure is partially supported by both land and water simultaneously, i.e. where gravity lads are shared by a buoyant substructure and structural elements bearing directly on the solid ground below the water. Another situation is where a mechanical system such as jacks or hydraulic pumps is used to elevate the structure temporarily. A third condition is a "wetproofing" strategy, whereby residents occupy the first floor during dry seasons and move to an upper storey during periods of flooding.

Amphibious design also includes the concepts of land use planning, site selection, community resilience issues such as the place of amphibious buildings in multiple-lines-of-defense systems, and policy considerations.

Amphibious engineering addresses issues such as infrastructure, mechanical systems and utilities, system components and selection criteria, and codification and certification concerns.