This is an article from the Architecture Australia archives and may use outdated formatting

Architects are able to make a positive contribution in this rapidly changing world, as they undertake an important pivotal role. Not only are they able to respond to change, they are also able to assist in making wise investments for the future.

Specialist knowledge and skills are needed to improve the quality of our built environment, and architects possess both of these. RAIA architects are uniquely qualified to:

  • DEFINE problems of the built environment;
  • creatively and imaginatively DEVISE options and solutions; and then
  • DELIVER the built product.

Architecture is an activity that reflects our culture’s values and portrays the economic and social environments of the day. It is vital to a healthy and vigorous society. In order to maximise the contribution that architects can offer society, it is important that the role of an architect and the benefits of good design are fully realised.

RAIA research shows that there is a limited understanding within our communities of the positive contribution that architects can make; and that this is partly because "no-one knows an architect." The RAIA will be doing all that it can to overcome this and will require assistance in order to raise the profile and value of good design.

The RAIA is currently embarking on a campaign of advocacy for the value of design for both the individual - the client - and for the common good. It is time for friends of architecture to rally and raise the profile and value of design.

For this campaign to be successful it is important that a clear message is given from both within and outside the Institute. Architects must be in the public view and identified as advocates for the well being of the community: for the value of design.

Architects need to advocate by community leadership, by shaping legislation and by setting the example. In order to ensure the relevance and preservation of our profession, we need to ensure that there is a positive line of communication between ourselves and the public, as this is essential for our voices to be heard. We need to place our skills in the service of our community and reinforce a place in the public mind by showing that RAIA architects can make a positive difference.

It is time for our profession to take a leadership role. Let us grasp the initiative. In accepting this challenge, we as architects, will ensure the health and vitality of our profession.

Ric Butt FRAIA
National President



Published online: 1 May 1997


Architecture Australia, May 1997

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