March 31, 2008

Engineering Architects.

architects and engineering

In the 2007 survey among Austrian self employed architects (Berufsfeld Architektur 1.0) nearly half of the participants identify building construction classes as the only practical teaching at University. Consequently courses like art history, architectural theory, art, design and even energy design are far behind. Austrian architectural practices seem to be primarily focused on engineering – other competences seem unnecessary. This attitude is mirrored in Austrian job offers: offices are exclusively looking for people doing approval planning (“Einreichung”) and construction documents (“Polierplanung”). The reason for this situation is found in the duties and responsibilities of Austrian architects: Still, local architectural practices are accountable for the total building process – design only offices are the exception. Quite evidently there is a huge gap between academic studies and professional life. Should architect’s education correspond more with the reality of the practise?