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Christine Murray's Comments

  • Comment on: 161 schemes by 137 practices: The AJ in 2012

    Christine Murray's comment 21-Dec-2012 11:19 am

    Thanks John, but 3.5? When did we half mention Helensburgh?

  • Comment on: You asked for it. We built it. The AJ is now on iPad

    Christine Murray's comment 3-Nov-2012 12:48 pm

    We're looking into this, but starting with one platform at a time

  • Comment on: You asked for it. We built it. The AJ is now on iPad

    Christine Murray's comment 31-Oct-2012 3:19 pm

    Thanks for your comment, John. There are absolutely no plans to phase out the print edition, we're just adding new ways to enjoy the AJ. Glad you like it. We'll be evolving the edition as we go, so all feedback welcome on how we can make it better and better.

  • Comment on: Digital edition: AJ 26.07.12

    Christine Murray's comment 26-Jul-2012 1:02 pm

    We reviewed every RIBA validated school - UCLAN has not yet acheived validation, although it has been seeking it for several years.

  • Comment on: Digital edition: AJ03.05.12

    Christine Murray's comment 12-May-2012 10:10 am

    No plans to go digital only, just to increase choice - so you can both read the AJ in whatever format you prefer. And yes, the iPad edition is coming...

  • Comment on: RIAS slammed for all-male convention and ballot line-up

    Christine Murray's comment 11-May-2012 10:31 pm

    Dear Amanda, What you state is ideal, but the statistics don't back it up. From our survey of nearly 700 women and 100 men, and compared to salary data from RIBA and the AJ100, women are paid significantly less for the same full-time position. By your logic, that means women just aren't good at their job, otherwise they would 'rise to the top'. The reality is that statistics show the glass ceiling in pay and position still exists. While 25 per cent of men working full-time are paid over £51,000 per year, just nine per cent of full-time working women are paid as much. And while 40 per cent of women working full-time are paid £25,000 or less per year, just a quarter of full-time working men in architecture are paid as little. According to RIBA Appointments’ salary guide, which does not include figures for director pay, architects should earn between £34-45,000 per annum, while associates should earn £37-50,000. Median pay for directors for the last two years in the AJ100 was £75k. Median pay for associates in the AJ100 was £46,000 last year, while median pay for architects was £37,000.

  • Comment on: The story of Goldibox: Maidstone Museum by Hugh Broughton

    Christine Murray's comment 1-May-2012 5:20 pm

    Click the link above to the AJ Buildings Library to see all drawings, including the site plan.

  • Comment on: It's time for a serious look at women in practice

    Christine Murray's comment 12-Jan-2012 6:03 pm

    With the rising cost of education, there are many male and female part 1 and part 2 students who believe an architect's salary and fees are no longer representative of the cost of qualification - especially when compared with other professions such as medicine and law

  • Comment on: Plans submitted for £1bn Scottish 'Poundbury'

    Christine Murray's comment 13-Sep-2011 12:49 pm

    Interesting that Walters and Cohen will be designing contemporary schools in the middle of it, and that these will not be subject to the design code.

  • Comment on: Architects not let down by the press, debate decides

    Christine Murray's comment 9-Sep-2011 5:24 pm

    Highlight of the night, for me, of course, was Amanda Baillieu saying 'If you don't like BD, you don't have to put it in the bin now. It's not free anymore, just don't subscribe'. On a more serious note, several architects in the audience complained about the poor quality of blog journalism online, but few seemed to embrace the idea of subscriber-only access, and the notion that journalists, like architects, deserve to be paid for what they do. The cost of paper goes up every year, but subscriptions to all print media has fallen since the dawn of the internet. There are a lot of great, historic, publications out there. In a decade, which ones will remain? The architectural profession ultimately will get the media it deserves - the media they were willing to pay for.

  • Comment on: Riots updated: Sennett, Rykwert, Till, de Botton, Tavernor and more on why Britain is burning

    Christine Murray's comment 11-Aug-2011 12:34 pm

    We asked several women, actually. The first thinkers to reply were posted yesterday, but we will continue to update this page, and post more comments, as they come in.

  • Comment on: Riots updated: Sennett, Rykwert, Till, de Botton, Tavernor and more on why Britain is burning

    Christine Murray's comment 11-Aug-2011 11:05 am

    It would make an interesting debate. I've added Irena Bauman's comment above: 'No amount of regeneration funding will help.' Have architectural interventions in public realm been used by local authorities to gloss over deeper social problems? Have they been paying lipservice to change and regeneration, using public realm/small projects as public relations campaigns, so that they can show something tangible they are doing, when really they are doing nothing to 'redistribute wealth', as Bauman suggests. Many of these projects did improve neighbourhoods, etc. but they needed to be underpinned by social programmes to really 'regenerate' a place.

  • Comment on: UK riots: tell us your stories

    Christine Murray's comment 10-Aug-2011 1:44 pm

    I live in Dalston, which was 'protected' by the local Turkish and Kurdish shopkeepers. I think the recent regeneration of the area wasn't really intended to improve the lives of the disaffected youth that are rioting, the local Turkish and Kurdish communities, or the inhabitants of the local council estates (although section 106s as part of new developments did result in new libraries and public spaces for the area). Regeneration is about getting the yuppies in, and driving the locals out. This kind of regeneration exacerbates, rather than narrows, the class divide. Agree that raiding shops is about poverty and consumerism, not politics.

  • Comment on: AJ Buildings Library now open to all AJ subscribers

    Christine Murray's comment 14-Jul-2011 10:18 am

    Thanks Simon. We're hoping it brings the tradition of building an architectural library with the AJ into the 21st century. Several architecture schools and large practices have subscribed to site-wide IP access to the AJBL, but I'm so pleased that now students, sole practitioners and small practices can benefit from this resource too.

  • Comment on: Colerne Primary School dining rooms, Colerne, Somerset, by Mitchell Taylor Workshop

    Christine Murray's comment 4-Apr-2011 10:01 am

    Response from Piers Taylor, Mitchell Taylor Workshop on the coping detail: 'The timber (lack of) coping detail was something we developed a few years ago on Sanderson House (AJ 16th April 09). We'd always hated copings/flashings on the top of buildings, so researched with Trada how we might do away with it. The timber skin (slow grown extremely durable Siberian Larch) is effectively a fence sitting in front of the waterproofing which tucks down behind it. The top of the board is chamfered to encourage water run off - Trada suggest in this application the (untreated) board will last 75 years. For what it is worth we did a developed version of this detail on Starfall Farm that was in the 2011 AJ Small Projects, where there's also an oversized ribbed coverstrip. The detail defies conventional timber detailing wisdom, but Trada have convinced us that it does work.'

  • Comment on: Good design can heal

    Christine Murray's comment 29-Mar-2011 4:32 pm

    I will touch on this issue in my next Leader too.

  • Comment on: Good design can heal

    Christine Murray's comment 29-Mar-2011 12:48 pm

    Thank you, John. There has been a revolution over the past decade in the design of birth centres and cancer care facilities. I can only hope that 'rooms for dying in' will be next, and that architects will be recognised as instrumental in making decent hospice care happen.

  • Comment on: Call for entries for this year's AJ100 survey

    Christine Murray's comment 16-Mar-2011 11:31 am

    Thanks for asking. Just some background and hopefully a thorough response to your question: The AJ100 practices are the biggest employers of qualified architects in this country. As such they play a strong role in shaping what it is to be an architect in the UK today. The AJ uses data from the survey, working with Imperial College London, to track how the profession is faring and report back to the profession on trends in architect salaries, fees, markets, sectors, etc. There are typically three or four practices that should be in the AJ100 that occasionally decline to submit the AJ100 survey. Sometimes this is a one-off, and they re-enter the survey the following year. Other times they have had a difficult year, and have been forced to make an undue number of redundancies, which would see them fall in the AJ100 ranking. But there may also be practices that are uncomfortable with the level of transparency the AJ100 survey requires: The value of the survey as a piece of research is that it is extensive – we ask a number of sensitive questions, such as the salary range of Part 1, Part 2, associates, architects, directors and partners, fee scales and the female-to-male ratio of employees, as well as economic questions, such as the practice’s foreign fee income in different regions, or their architectural fee income vs. total fee income. I can’t answer why your practice has declined to enter, and it's hard to speculate, as I don't know where you work. Perhaps there is something about their company data that doesn't fit with their branding or image – maybe they don't employ a lot of fully-qualified architects, but their brand is bigger than their size. Or perhaps they don't feel transparency is important. Many practices enter the AJ100 because they understand that this is a valuable piece of research, and participation is important. They also get a number of benefits throughout the year for being in the 'club' -- such as breakfast briefings, lunches, networking opportunities with clients, gov't officials, etc. As a journal of record, of course we would like the list to be complete – although in terms of accuracy – even with the absence of three or four practices – the data is still statistically solid. We work closely with Imperial to ensure this. The data still reflects the day-to-day work of nearly 6,000 qualified architects, not to mention the myriad technologists, year-out students, etc. As the output and methodology of the practices included is diverse, from sector specialists such as Populous and Purcell Miller Tritton, to ideologically-strong practices such as Feilden Clegg Bradley Studios, through the AJ100, we are able to report on the shape and economic health of the profession, and make solid predictions for the coming year. What can we predict? Where the work is, what kind of work, and what kind of practice is delivering it. Also, on the individual level, we can tell architects what the AJ100 practices' priorities are, who is hiring, what sectors are hot, etc. I hope this answers your question. Regards, Christine

  • Comment on: MSMR lands planning for Bankside affordable housing

    Christine Murray's comment 1-Mar-2011 1:26 pm

    We referred to it as Bankside because the project is the affordable housing provision for the NEO Bankside development on the Thames, and developed by GC Bankside. We do refer to Hoxton as being in North London, etc., as this is consistent with the AJ's house style, and it would be London-centric to assume everyone knows where everything in London is.

  • Comment on: Don't wait for the Big Society to help small practices

    Christine Murray's comment 1-Mar-2011 1:19 pm

    Through the competition system and the localism agenda, architects do have to work hard for free in order to win more work. Is there a way to claw things back? Has anyone found another way to grow their practice?

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