The papers contained in this special issue contribute to a recently revitalised scholarship on architecture within social and cultural geography. New direction was given to established geographies of architecture by Lees's (2001) call for geographers to move beyond an emphasis on symbolic meaning (representationalism) and towards a consideration of ‘the practical and effective or “non-representational” import of architecture’ (2001: 51). In the past decade social and cultural geographers have responded to this call and, in the process, reshaped the geography of architecture. The papers collected here make further contributions to that scholarship. The starting point for our own thinking, and the initial call for papers that generated the content herein, was the concept of ‘practising architectures’.