The legal position of architects in the European Union

    Research output: Chapter in Book/Conference proceedings/Edited volumeConference contributionScientificpeer-review


    Since 1985, EU Directive EEC 85/384, also known as the European Architects Directive, has regulated the legal position of architects in the European Union. The directive¿s greatest asset is its provision for the mutual recognition of qualifications in architecture in EU Member States. The purpose of this provision is twofold: to safeguard the freedom of movement of architects within the EU, and to guarantee that architects from the different member states have the same basic skills and competences. The present study examines whether current European regulations are indeed sufficient to ensure competent, competitive and consumer-friendly practices in the architectural profession throughout Europe¿s (growing) internal market ¿ both now and in the future. In addressing this question, we analysed the implementation of the directive under the regulations of the different Member States. The findings of our analyses indicate that the educational requirements at the European level are insufficient, as many countries impose additional (legal) requirements concerning the quality of architectural services. We also encountered a wide variety of regulatory systems. The study at the focus of this paper was conducted in 2003/2004 in the fifteen Member States comprising the EU at the time. The regulations in the (northern and eastern) European countries that joined the EU in 2004 were not analysed. The EU¿s expansion has given rise to an even greater need for more harmonised and updated European legislation aimed at establishing a basic level of competence for graduating architects. Regulations that focus solely on educational qualifications are not sufficient to ensure consumer protection and the quality of the built environment. This is especially true given the EU principle that allows architects (and other professionals) to register and practise in any EU Member State. To guarantee consumers and users uniform quality, additional requirements are needed regarding the practical experience of recently certified architects, continued education for architects throughout their careers, a professional code of conduct and indemnity insurance.
    Original languageUndefined/Unknown
    Title of host publicationProceedings of the CIB W89 Internationale Conference on Building Education and Research
    EditorsA Balsswin, E Hui, F Wong
    Place of PublicationHong Kong
    PublisherHong Kong Polytechnic Unviversity; Dept. Building & Real Est
    Number of pages10
    ISBN (Print)962-367-511-9
    Publication statusPublished - 2006

    Publication series

    PublisherHong Kong Polytechnic Unviversity; Dept. Building & Real Est


    • Conf.proc. > 3 pag

    Cite this