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Field set to be international

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Buildings in the running for next year's Stirling Prize could include a host of projects by foreign architects, following the RIBA's decision to open up its awards to honorary fellows.

The move would pave the way for consideration of two of the most significant recent projects - Frank Gehry's Maggie's Centre in Dundee and Daniel Libeskind's Imperial War Museum North in Manchester.

This year, honorary fellows Jacques Herzog and Pierre de Meuron were only eligible for consideration with Laban after hiring a UK architect on the project, and lost out on the chance to submit Tate Modern in 2001.

Head of awards Tony Chapman said the RIBA recognised the need to rectify the anomaly, but denied the change was designed with specific schemes in mind.

Other projects that could be in the running for next year's prize include Future Systems' Birmingham Selfridges, Foster and Partners' Swiss Re Tower in London and its McLaren technology centre in Surrey.

Grimshaw's Bath Spa would also be in with a chance once it finally opens, as will RMJM's Scottish Parliament if it meets its latest completion target.

Richard Rogers Partnership's Paddington Waterside Building should also be complete in time.

Chapman said the RIBA was also looking into the possibility of introducing a special award for buildings outside the EU.

International projects are ineligible for Stirling due to a lack of resources needed to judge them adequately.

Projects that could make it in this new category include Zaha Hadid's Cincinnati Contemporary Arts Centre.

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