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Proposed AIA Resolution Would Address Falling Numbers of Newly Licensed Architects

A resolution will be presented at The American Institute of Architects (AIA) national convention in Las Vegas (May 19-21) that will attempt to address the issue of the decreasing number of people obtaining licenses to practice architecture, and the dearth of data available on the topic.

The number of initial licenses issued nationally was 2,820 in 2002 and 2,470 in 2003, according to NCARB (National Council of Architectural Registration Boards). The resolution also notes that little commensurate state registration data has been made available to the profession or the public.


Resolution 05-1, sponsored by the AIA California Council, the Boston Society of Architects, and AIA Massachusetts, calls for the AIA and NCARB to work with individual state boards to conduct a survey of newly licensed architects over the past 10 years, to be updated annually. It also calls for the AIA to assess the impact related to the decline in the number of newly licensed architects on the profession and on the AIA as the profession’s association.

The resolution is, in part, a response to a problem that is especially acute in California where the number of newly licensed architects declined rapidly in the 1990s, from 1,339 in 1989 to 398 in 2004.

John E. Czarnecki, Assoc. AIA