Edge Debate 84: Professionalism - asset or obstacle?

Tuesday, October 9th, 2018 | Debates


The Future of the Built Environment Professions

The Institution of Civil Engineers (ICE) is 200 years old this year and the RICS 150. The RIBA will hold its bicentenary in 2034. All three institutions are rooted in the nineteenth century but have been undergoing continuous change since the day they were founded in necessary response to social, political and economic realities. All three are undoubtedly survivors, along with the professions they represent, yet there are now ever more voices questioning their future as social upheaval, automation and the impact of unbridled capitalism take their toll.

The Edge has been exploring the future of the professional model in the construction industry for many years; through its involvement with the proposals for a New Professionalism published in Building Research & Information in 2013, the subsequent Commission of Inquiry on the Future of Professionalism in 2014 and the publication of the Commission Report Collaboration for Change in 2015. Now, with the publication of a major new book, Professionalism for the Built Environment by Edge member Simon Foxell, the subject is back on the agenda.

How should the professions act to shape and secure their future, maintain and raise their standards of performance and extend their influence?  What must be done to meet emerging needs and circumstances? If the challenges are considerable, then so too are the opportunities.

The debate marked the launch of Professionalism for the Built Environment. Further details are available from Routledge here. A flyer giving a 25% online discount (=£26.24) can be downloaded here.

Chair: Stephen Hodder, Deputy Chair, Construction Industry Council


Simon Foxell, The Architects Practice and author of Professionalism for the Built Environment (2018)

Ed McCann, Expedition Engineering and ICE Vice-President

Caroline Buckingham, caroline buckingham architects and RIBA Vice President Practice & Profession

Louise Clarke, Berkeley Group


FCBStudios, 20 Tottenham Street, London W1T 4RG


Debate 6.00 (for 6.30) – 8.00 pm


Invitation flyer for Edge Debate 84

Press Release for Professionalism for the Built Environment

Edge Debate 84: professionalism - asset or obstacle? - SF presentation

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