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Task force launched to shake-up architectural education

High-profile figures including those from Arup, the Bartlett and Laing O’Rourke, have begun a review of built environment training and qualification with a view to reform

A pan-industry task force is seeking to revolutionise education in the built environment and is looking for members to participate in the debate.

A steering committee led by Ryder Architecture and with representatives from Ryder, Arup, The What Now? Collaborative, the Bartlett, Strathclyde University, KPMG, Laing O’Rourke and the University of Bath – has agreed that fundamental reform across education and industry is needed to achieve, among other things:

• A higher standard of creative innovators and entrepreneurs in design and business

• A greater number of people with multi-disciplinary skills, including communication skills

• More diverse and flexible routes to qualification, including conversion courses

• Greater industry investment and partnership in education and training

These aims are the result of an inaugural debate in the summer.

It included a discussion about how schools across the built environment need to better train students to engage with industry; the limitations of the ARB/RIBA Part 1/2/3 framework, which is increasingly difficult to sustain financially; and the belief that the industry needs free-thinking, creative professionals from a range of professional backgrounds.

Over the coming weeks, the AJ will publish a range of comment pieces from members of the steering committee. Join the discussion at

Readers' comments (1)

  • John Kellett

    I had the advantage of studying on the excellent 'thin sandwich' course at Bath University (from 1978), where the first five terms were taken jointly with the structural and services engineering student. I would suggest that a similar 'holistic' and collaborative approach is to be recommended. The overly 'arty' courses are doing the profession a dis-service. Architecture is an even handed mixture of 'art' and 'science'. The advice on the education of an architect given by Vitruvius is still relevant today!

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