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AIA Awards 4 US Projects Research Grants

14:00 - 4 April, 2016
AIA Awards 4 US Projects Research Grants, Courtesy of American Institute of Archtiects
Courtesy of American Institute of Archtiects

The American Institute of Architects (AIA) has selected four projects for its Upjohn Research Initiative, a joint program of the College of Fellows and the Board Knowledge Committee to support knowledge sharing between practitioners and academicians. "The purpose of this grant, now in its ninth year, is to provide base funds for applied research projects that advance professional knowledge and practice," says the AIA. "The 18-month long project grant qualifies recipients to have their findings and outcomes published both electronically and in a nationally distributed publication." Read on for more on each project. 

AIA Releases Diversity Survey Results

14:00 - 12 March, 2016
AIA Releases Diversity Survey Results, via AIA
via AIA

The AIA has released the results of a survey on diversity in the workplace. Taken by more than 7,500 professionals in the industry, the purpose of the survey was to investigate the careers of architects and observe how firm culture affects career paths, depending on race, ethnicity, and gender.

Some of the key findings included representations of gender and race, challenges to career advancement, work-life balance and its impact on women, factors impacting the representation of minorities, reasons for leaving the architecture field, and job satisfaction levels.

12 Architects to Receive AIA Young Architects Award

16:00 - 5 March, 2016
12 Architects to Receive AIA Young Architects Award, Courtesy of American Institute of Archtiects
Courtesy of American Institute of Archtiects

The American Institute of Architects (AIA) has selected 12 recipients for the 2016 AIA Young Architects Award. The award, now in its 23rd year, recognizes architects who have been licensed for 10 years or fewer. These young architects have shown exceptional leadership and have made significant contributions to the profession. The recipients will be honored at the 2016 AIA National Convention in Philadelphia. Click here to see the winners and their profiles.

Call for Entries: AIA UK Excellence in Design Awards

05:05 - 4 March, 2016
Call for Entries: AIA UK Excellence in Design Awards

For over 20 years the American Institute of Architects UK Chapter 'Excellence in Design Awards' programme has proven highly valued by architects as they confer trans-Atlantic recognition for design excellence. Professional entries are sought from architects, industrial designers, urban planners, landscape architects and interior designers based in Britain, and from around the world for completed projects in the UK.

When It Comes to Sustainable Design, Architects Still Don't Get It

09:30 - 29 February, 2016
When It Comes to Sustainable Design, Architects Still Don't Get It, Perkins + Will's Centre for Interactive Research on Sustainability, which won the RAIC's Green Building Award last year. Image © Martin Tessler
Perkins + Will's Centre for Interactive Research on Sustainability, which won the RAIC's Green Building Award last year. Image © Martin Tessler

In the face of global doomsday predictions, sustainability has become one of the most crucial aspects of the 21st century, now playing a huge role in everything from politics to the way you dispose of your trash. Fortunately, most architects understand sustainability implicitly, and have adopted it into their lives and work. Or have they? In this article, originally published on Common Edge as "Why Architects Don't Get It," green building expert Lance Hosey highlights the failures of the architecture community in reaching their stated sustainability goals, and argues for a new conception of architecture in which good design and sustainable design are integrated.

A few years ago, the American Institute of Architects, the self-declared “voice of the architecture profession,” announced that "AIA members will no longer need to complete the sustainable design requirement to fulfill their AIA continuing education." Why? Because “sustainable design practices have become a mainstream design intention.” Hooray! If sustainability is “mainstream” now, and knowledge about it is no longer necessary “to maintain competency” and “to advance and improve the profession”—the purpose of continuing education, according to the AIA—then the profession must have met its environmental goals, and there’s nothing left to improve. Mission accomplished.

If only.

AIA Survey Shows that Non-Residential and Sustainable Construction Are Increasing

14:00 - 20 February, 2016
AIA Survey Shows that Non-Residential and Sustainable Construction Are Increasing, Edith Green-Wendell Wyatt (EGWW) Federal Building Modernization; Portland, Oregon / SERA Architects with Cutler Anderson Architects. Image © Nic Lehoux
Edith Green-Wendell Wyatt (EGWW) Federal Building Modernization; Portland, Oregon / SERA Architects with Cutler Anderson Architects. Image © Nic Lehoux

A set of reports by the AIA show an expected increase in spending on non-residential design for 2016 and 2017, as well as an emergence of more sustainable building technologies.

“Emerging technologies are becoming the dominant force in how buildings are being designed,” said AIA Chief Economist Kermit Baker, Hon. AIA, PhD. “Buildings in their own right are becoming far more energy efficient, and certain technologies are increasing both the efficiency of the people using the buildings and the project delivery methods in which buildings are being designed and constructed.”

Call for Entries: 'Re-Defining Home: Home Today, Home Tomorrow Design Challenge'

13:15 - 20 February, 2016
Call for Entries: 'Re-Defining Home: Home Today, Home Tomorrow Design Challenge'

We know people overwhelmingly want to stay living in their homes and communities for as long as possible. But, livability isn’t about ageing. It is about comfort, convenience, safety and options throughout one’s life. Yet, people tend to buy or live in homes based on their present-day circumstances. We can start to change that… one home design at a time.
To that end, this competition challenges architects, designers and allied professionals to create new standards in housing concepts so people can stay in their home as they travel through various life stages. Help alter the paradigm and re-imagine Home so it changes with a person’s needs, as they evolve in life. That’s what Re-defining Home: Home Today, Home Tomorrow is all about, and why it is so important.

AIA Brooklyn and Queens Chapter Launch the Brooklyn & Queens Design Awards

13:05 - 20 February, 2016
AIA Brooklyn and Queens Chapter Launch the Brooklyn & Queens Design Awards

With the growth of new development and renovation in our two boroughs in the past five years, our professional associations are excited to collaborate on this event to celebrate the contributions of the design professions to the urban environment we all share.

In its inaugural year, the Brooklyn + Queens Design Awards (BQDA) program has been established to encourage excellence in architectural design, to raise public awareness of the built environment and to honor the architects, owners and builders of significant projects within the two boroughs. It is the goal and collaboration of the AIA Brooklyn and AIA Queens Chapters to promote chapter members and affiliates through the display of their design and service accomplishments.

US ABI Drops Slightly in January

16:00 - 19 February, 2016
US ABI Drops Slightly in January, January 2016 ABI. Image via CalculatedRiskBlog.com
January 2016 ABI. Image via CalculatedRiskBlog.com

Continuing its up-and-down trajectory from the end of 2015, the American Institute of Architects' (AIA) Architectural Billings Index (ABI) for January 2016 dropped once again below 50 - to 49.6 - representing a slight decrease in billings. It also showed a reduction in the Projects Inquiries Index, which fell to 55.3 after its strong showing of 60.2 in December.

Rem Koolhaas, Neri Oxman and Kevin Spacey to Speak at AIA National Convention 2016

16:00 - 18 February, 2016
Rem Koolhaas, Neri Oxman and Kevin Spacey to Speak at AIA National Convention 2016, Mediated Matter's Silk Pavilion in the MIT Media Lab. Image © Steven Keating, courtesy of Mediated Matter
Mediated Matter's Silk Pavilion in the MIT Media Lab. Image © Steven Keating, courtesy of Mediated Matter

Update: In addition to the previous announcement of Neri Oxman and Kevin Spacey as keynote speakers, the AIA has now announced Rem Koolhaas as the headline speaker for day three of this year's convention in Philadelphia. Koolhaas' speech will be titled "Delirious Philadelphia," a playful twist on his seminal book Delirious New York. The following article was originally published on February 11th.

AIA Elevates 149 Members to College of Fellows

16:00 - 15 February, 2016
AIA Elevates 149 Members to College of Fellows, 35XV Residences. Image Courtesy of FXFOWLE
35XV Residences. Image Courtesy of FXFOWLE

The American Institute of Architects (AIA) 2016 Jury of Fellows has elevated 149 AIA members and eight international architects to its prestigious College of fellows, an honor awarded to members who have made significant contributions to the profession.

“The Fellowship program was developed to elevate those architects who have made a significant contribution to architecture and society and who have achieved a standard of excellence in the profession. Election to fellowship not only recognizes the achievements of architects as individuals, but also their significant contribution to architecture and society on a national level.”

Some of the elevated members are:

Marlon Blackwell on the Importance of Small Projects

14:00 - 13 February, 2016

In this video by the AIA, Marlon Blackwell, one of Arkansas’ foremost architects, speaks on the importance of small projects in an architect's career. “I only really worked on small projects at the beginning…that was doing everything…The scale of the site, the scale of the model, the scale of the hand…the beauty of the small project is that you can work at all of those many scales," says Blackwell. “The smaller projects are the beginning of the development of a language in architecture. I see it not as a benign or banal thing but as the beginning of taking yourself from where you are to where you want to be.”

2016 AIA Thomas Jefferson Award Given to Hans Butzer

16:00 - 7 February, 2016
2016 AIA Thomas Jefferson Award Given to Hans Butzer, The Oklahoma City National Memorial by Hans Butzer. Image © Flickr CC User Leo Reynolds
The Oklahoma City National Memorial by Hans Butzer. Image © Flickr CC User Leo Reynolds

The American Institute of Architects (AIA) has selected Hans Butzer as the recipient of the 2016 Thomas Jefferson Award for Public Architecture. The award recognizes excellence in architectural advocacy and achievement in the public realm. Learn more about Butzer, after the break.

AIA Honors George Smart with 2016 Collaborative Achievement Award

14:00 - 6 February, 2016
AIA Honors George Smart with 2016 Collaborative Achievement Award, via Triangle Modern Homes
via Triangle Modern Homes

The AIA has selected George Smart as the winner of the 2016 Collaborative Achievement Award for his work with North Carolina Modernist Houses (NCMH), which creates “fresh awareness” of modern architecture through its mission to "document, preserve, and promote modernist architecture" across the US. The award, to be presented at the 2016 AIA National Convention and Design Exposition in Philadelphia, recognizes and encourages distinguished achievements of allied professionals, clients, organizations, architect teams, knowledge communities, and others who have had a beneficial influence on or advanced the architectural profession.

6 Firms Highlighted as New York's "Promising" New Practices

12:30 - 5 February, 2016
6 Firms Highlighted as New York's "Promising" New Practices, Zone 14 Canopy / Taller KEN. Image © Andres Asturias
Zone 14 Canopy / Taller KEN. Image © Andres Asturias

The American Institute of Architects New York Chapter has named six firms as the recipients of its New Practices New York 2016 award. Under this year's theme of "Prospect," the winners were selected for having "leveraged multiple aspects of the architecture profession, utilizing unique and innovative strategies, both in the projects and the practices they have started." 

The six "promising and pioneering firms" are...

Towards a Hip-Hop Architecture: NYC Edition

07:30 - 21 January, 2016
Towards a Hip-Hop Architecture: NYC Edition, © Flickr CC User Urban_Data
© Flickr CC User Urban_Data

Architecture and Hip-Hop are both social, cultural practices that have remained at polar ends of a societal spectrum for most of their existence. Hip-Hop, which historically was born from communities of under-privileged youth, is often at odds with Architecture, a profession that has until recently, existed to almost solely service the top of society. With the affluence of certain hip hop artists – Pharrell Williams, Kanye West and Jay-Z, to name a few – hip hop has begun to encroach the realm of design, and ever so slightly, the dimension of architecture. A new “hip hop architecture” is being born.

US ABI Ends 2015 on Positive Note

16:00 - 20 January, 2016
US ABI Ends 2015 on Positive Note, December 2015 ABI. Image © CalculatedRiskBlog.com
December 2015 ABI. Image © CalculatedRiskBlog.com

Despite a few volatile months, the US Architecture Billings Index (ABI) concluded 2015in positive terrain. The American Institute of Architects (AIA) reported the December ABI score was 50.9, up from the mark of 49.3 in the previous month. This score reflects a slight increase in design services (any score above 50 indicates an increase in billings). The new projects inquiry index was 60.2, up from a reading of 58.6 the previous month.

“As has been the case for the past several years, there continues to be a mix of business conditions that architecture firms are experiencing,” said AIA Chief Economist Kermit Baker, Hon. AIA, PhD.  “Overall, however, ABIscores for 2015 averaged just below the strong showing in 2014, which points to another healthy year for construction this year.”

EHDD's Monterey Bay Aquarium Wins AIA 25 Year Award

16:00 - 15 January, 2016
EHDD's Monterey Bay Aquarium Wins AIA 25 Year Award, Monterey Bay Aquarium / EHDD. Image Courtesy of Bruce Damonte
Monterey Bay Aquarium / EHDD. Image Courtesy of Bruce Damonte

The Monterey Bay Aquarium in Monterey, California, has been selected for the 2016 American Institute of Architects' (AIA) Twenty-five Year Award. Designed by EHDD of San Francisco, and completed in 1984, the Monterey Bay Aquarium is a "light-filled ensemble of diverse spaces, unique among aquariums in its interweaving of indoors and out," says the AIA. The award is presented yearly to a project that has "stood the test of time by embodying architectural excellence for 25 to 35 years."