How will the architect’s role change in the future?

Apr 11, 2018

Innovation, creativity, technology, social changes —

These external factors constantly influence and transform industries and the roles within them. There’s no denying how much the architectural design process has changed since the time of Sir Christopher Wren. So, what does the future hold for the role of the architect?

Designing with greater social and environmental impact

From the Passivhaus standard to green cities to a greater use of sustainable materials, there has been an increased focus on the wider impact building and design has on society and the environment, and this will only continue. This social consciousness was suggested in The Future for Architects report from Building Futures. It noted that many of the recent graduates and students it spoke to at the time cited being drawn to roles in the building profession that had a social agenda and agreed that architecture brought a “social science” to the building process. And, as architect John McRae wrote for Building, architects will place more importance on striking the balance between social and economic value.

Rebranding the role

Perhaps one of the greatest changes the architecture sector could see is a rebrand in what they call themselves. McRae believes architects could become a “one stop shop” for design, value creation, construction, and the delivery of projects. And the Future for Architects report revealed concerns regarding the term “architect”, with many finding it restrictive. Instead, we could see a rise in creative consultants, design houses, and creative agencies, which will have more flexibility in moving with the market, adopting technology, and focusing on “design thinking”.

Greater collaboration

These new creative consultancies could lead to more collaboration between those involved in the design and building process. The report predicts these could “pool the collaborative talents of brand consultants, researchers, product and industrial designers, with architects.”

Impact of technology

Technology has already transformed the profession, with designs created on screen rather than on paper and algorithm-based programs creating buildings. But more innovative uses of technology could also help architects provide more services and expand their roles. And, as is already being seen with use of 3D-printed buildings, architects are partnering with external tech companies or implementing their own use of technology to deliver innovative methods of building. Meanwhile, Archinect believes architects will increasingly use drones for their work. While many are already adopting the tech for photography, some are using drones to scan sites and provide feedback during the construction process, while others are investigating ways in which to incorporate drone data feedback into the design aspect.

While the name may change, responsibilities may expand, and technology may play a greater role in the way in which work is carried out, the fundamental responsibility of the architect will remain the same. They will continue to use their expertise to transform someone’s dream into reality and consider the way in which building and design impacts our daily lives and the environment.

If you’re looking to collaborate on the design of an office space, call the experts at Kerr today.

Recent Blog Posts

Has the world of work really changed?

Has the world of work really changed?

The world of work has been turned on its head. The challenges the world is facing currently has brought about a paradigm shift in how businesses and people work. It is causing organisations to totally rethink how they use space and the role of the...

Ten shifts for 2020: The future of work (Part 1)

Ten shifts for 2020: The future of work (Part 1)

We’re always seeking out the most up-to-date research and insight to support our workplace design offering, ensuring we are always providing clients with solutions that are fit-for-purpose and enhance an organisation and its’ people at the most strategic...

What makes a high-performing workplace?

What makes a high-performing workplace?

Where do you start when trying to create a high-performance workplace? Recent research has discovered that key to establishing a high performing workplace is through establishing a high-development culture, where the growth of individuals is highly valued....

Office Perks in 2020

Office Perks in 2020

Some might consider ‘office culture’ as just another buzz phrase, thrown around by corporations trying to give themselves a human touch. But establishing a positive office culture is actually a crucial part of successful organisations. Gone are the days of...

Looking for someone to redesign your office space?

Work with us to achieve your ambitions. Not sure what you need? Arrange a call with one of our experienced team members and learn more about how we can work together to improve working lives for you and your staff and grow your business.