The fourth International Conference on Defence Sites, Heritage and Future will be reconvened in 2018 in Malta following the success of the previous conferences which started in Portsmouth, UK (2012); followed by the Arsenale di Venezia, Italy (2014) and the last meeting at the University of Alicante, Spain (2016).

Redundant defence sites offer a range of opportunities to planners, architects and local communities to redevelop large areas, bringing new life to often neglected parts of towns. The opportunities are common to many countries and the papers to be presented at the conference will stress this common feature and help to share experiences of the transformation of defence sites to civilian uses around the world.

The conference objective is to raise the knowledge of the scale, design and functions of defence sites. It will bring a better understanding of the issues raised by their redundancy and the implications of different disposal processes for the land.

The re-use of defence sites also raises questions regarding the need to recover contaminated land which can have far-reaching legal responsibilities and environmental consequences.

Another aim of the conference is to discuss the need to achieve sustainable development which involves issues related to maintenance and conservation, as well as built and natural environmental controls, while responding to the needs and aspirations of the community.

Papers presented at previous Defence Heritage Conferences as well as all other meetings organised by the Wessex Institute since 1993 are freely available in the WIT elibrary (

Conference Topics

The following list covers some of the topics to be presented at Defence Heritage 2018. Papers on other subjects related to the objectives of the conference are also welcome.

  • Military heritage history
  • Castles and fortresses
  • Fortified cities
  • Transition from military to civilian life
  • Fortified heritage, culture and tourism
  • Conservation and restoration
  • Case studies
  • Community involvement
  • Simulation and modelling
  • Economic analysis

Benefits of Attending

Publication of Papers
Papers presented at Defence Heritage 2018 are to be published by WIT Press in a Volume of WIT Transactions. Selected papers will appear in an issue of the International Journal of The Built Environment instead.

To ensure the quality of our publications, abstracts and papers are peer reviewed by members of the International Scientific Advisory Committee and other experts, with manuscripts processed through CrossRef Similarity Check.

Open Access
WIT Press is an advocate of Open Access which offers maximum dissemination of your work. All WIT Transactions and Journal papers can be downloaded for free from the wit elibrary (

Indexing and Archiving
Papers presented at Wessex Institute conferences are referenced by CrossRef and have appeared in notable reviews and databases. Papers are submitted to various indexing services such as Web of Science, Google Scholar and Scopus. All conference books are listed in the British Library and American Library of Congress.

Conference Proceedings
At registration delegates will be given copies of the papers presented at the Conference on a USB Flash drive. Following the Conference, delegates will receive an electronic copy of the final publication in which their paper has been published.

Digital Archive
All conference papers are archived online in the WIT eLibrary ( where they are permanently and freely available to the International Scientific Community.

Participants can present their research and interact with experts from around the world, as part of a unique community.

Reduced Fee for PhD Students
The Wessex Institute believes in the importance of encouraging PhD students to present and publish innovative research at its conferences. As a result, the Institute offers PhD students a much reduced conference fee.

*Google Scholar Indexation  WIT Press has made all its conference and journal papers open access in an effort to help its dissemination within the scientific and technical community.

This means that you are now able to download any paper in the WIT eLibrary ( totally free and without having to pre-register.

This major development has the added benefit of allowing the Google Scholar search engines to fully index all WIT papers.

Google Scholar is a search engine created specifically for researchers to facilitate the indexation and citation of academic papers free of charge. This service is becoming the most accepted comprehensive benchmark and quality standard.

In Google Scholar you will be able to see the number of citations of your articles as well as the ‘h-index’ ranking for both author and publications. The h-index is the largest number h such that at least h articles (by the author or in a publication) were cited at least h times each.

The impact of your work is given by the ‘i10 index’ which refers to the number of publications within the last 10 years that have at least 10 citations.

You can also easily create within the system an Author’s Profile which helps to highlight your achievements.

Google Scholar is becoming the most popular system in the world and its metrics are independent and unbiased. Unlike other ranking systems, it is free.

Publication of Papers

Papers presented at Defence Heritage 2018 are to be published by WIT press in a Volume of WIT Transactions. Selected papers will appear in an issue of the International Journal of Heritage Architecture (ISSN:2058-8321; Digital ISSN:2058-833X).

All conference papers are archived online in the WIT eLibrary ( where they are permanently and freely available to the international scientific community.

WIT Transactions have since 1993 been publishing exceptional conference papers which are referenced by CrossRef and have been indexed in international databases. All conference books are catalogued and archived in the British Library and American Library of Congress.

Open Access

WIT strongly believes that removing the barrier to research published online will greatly aid progress in all scientific and technical disciplines, as well as all other spheres of knowledge. Most WIT conference and all journal papers are freely available online.

Location, Country

MaltaThe Maltese Islands lie virtually at the centre of the Mediterranean, 93km south of Sicily and 288km north of Africa. The archipelago consists of three inhabited islands: Malta, Gozo and Comino as well as two uninhabited. In its history, Malta has acted as a safe harbour for refuge, an important trading point, a staging post for rest and replenishment and a vital military and naval base.  Malta offers visitors an incredible amount of attractions within its historically interesting towns and villages including various museums of architecture and art, palaces, churches and gardens. Valetta, its capital, has been awarded as European Cultural Capital in 2018.


Conference Venue and Accommodation

The conference will take place at the Ramla Bay Resort, located on a secluded peninsula on the northern coast of Malta, overlooking the picturesque islands of Gozo and Comino. The hotel has over 400 spacious rooms, each with a private balcony or terrace, and equipped with satellite television and air conditioning. The Ramla Bay Resort has a wide range of leisure facilities for guests, including a private sandy beach, indoor and outdoor swimming pools, fitness and wellness area.

The Resort hosts several ‘wine & dine’ options for you to choose from, including our main buffet restaurant The Horizon, and the al fresco Alang-Alang, which is charmingly perched overlooking the sea. The Mojitos Beach Terrace serving cocktails and Latino cuisine right by the water’s edge. The Seabreeze Casual dining right on the pool deck and the Watermelon Juice Bar mouth-watering fruit bar serving a healthy option of freshly made smoothie, fruit juice, or fruit salad.


Marfa, L/O Mellieha,
MLH 7100, Malta
Tel.    +356 2281 2281

Additional Information

Please use the links below to access additional information related to the conference. All links open in a new window.