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Ultra-low RIBA elections turnout is ‘wake-up call’, says former president


I voted. But only just. The list of candidates didn't inspire. The only candidate statement I had any faith in was Alfred Munkenbeck. Also the only architect of note and worldly experience. Most of the others gave the impression of "those who do, do, and those who don't, sit for council" Over simplification and ungracious to some, but when a candidates opening words are about diversity in the profession I turned off. We aren’t good self-publicists and we are being marginalised and underappreciated. The general tendency for architects on council to be from marginal areas and more interested in peripheral issues than correcting those 2 factors diminishes us. Kevin McLeod has done more for my practice than anything the RIBA has done in recent years. He publicises and emphasises our benefit in a highly public arena. We need the RIBA to do this. It’s of primary importance. If we regain exposure and mass appreciation, correcting other things that marginalise will follow, often by default. I would make him honorary vice president. We need full page ads and internet advertising in mainstream media, Youtube publicity to intercept clients at an early stage, as an education programme like consumer product manufacturers do. People know more about their car purchase than their house, which costs far more. Most architects work in small practices without the budget to do this, and so the RIBA, as a central body, should and can. I would pay double the subscription if it did so effectively. Not currently interested in a deprived kid getting a shot at university when the profession is under such threat. They'd be financially better off doing something else anyway. Or equality agendas that don't carry out worthwhile multivalent analysis rather than just looking at pay. This is all internal virtue signalling missing the elephant in the room, namely the smaller practice end of the profession is going down the pan and wrt the profession as a whole, the public don't understand what we do or the value of it. End of rant, got to get back to working for nothing!

Posted date

2 August, 2019

Posted time

10:10 am