Royal Institute of British Architectswww.architecture.com
About Royal Institute of British ArchitectsThe Royal Institute of British Architects (RIBA) is a professional body that sets the standards that put its members at the top of their profession by providing training and support. It works with the government to improve the design quality of public buildings and new homes. It is a non-profit institute so relies on its 40,000 members and sponsors to carry out the work that it does.
RIBA has a large role in the education of new architects. Its members played a part in establishing the Architects (Registration) Acts, 1931 to 1938. They outline the importance of giving architects the responsibility of supervising building works of local authorities rather than engineers. Legislation like this helped to increase the professionalism of architects and set standards that they must meet. RIBA also consulted on the reconstitution of the Architects’ Registration Council of the United Kingdom (ARCUK) to the Architects Registration Board (ARB). It is a legal requirement for architects to be ARB registered, which further increases the credibility of the profession as all members must meet ARB standards.
Along with the ARB, RIBA also accredits architecture schools in the UK under a course validation procedure. It can validate international courses without contribution from the ARB. This ensures that customers can trust RIBA professionals as their training centres have been accredited.
RIBA also campaigns for changes in legislation and standards. In 2007, it called for minimum space standards in new builds after it emerged that British houses were falling behind other European countries. It claimed that the average new home is smaller than those built in the 1920s. In 2011, the campaign launched as Homewise.
Chartered members of RIBA can use the designation ‘RIBA’ after their name. Customers should look for this designation as well as ensuring that they are a member of the ARB before choosing an architect.