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Today we have published our 2017 Annual Report outlining how we have turned challenge into opportunity in a period of organisational and political change.

The Report details our work as the regulator of the architects’ profession in protecting users and potential users of architects’ services, and supporting architects through regulation. It includes a Joint Message from Nabila Zulfiqar (our Board Chair) and Karen Holmes (our Registrar and Chief Executive), updates from across our range of work and ‘at a glance’ facts and figures from the year, as well as our audited accounts.

Key Figures
• 39,987 architects on the Architects Register – a searchable, online register of all architects in the UK
• 310,000 sessions on (visits to) the Architects Register (a 9% increase from 285,000 in 2016)
• 1,440 new admissions to the Register via the UK route including Prescribed Examinations
• 945 new admissions via the EU route (lower than in 2016 and 2015 but higher than in 2012, 2013 and 2014)
• 153 prescribed qualifications at year end
• 28 European qualifications notified to the European Commission
• 50% of conduct and competence complaints resolved without the need for further investigation
• 431 misuse of title investigations
• 29% increase in downloads of the ARB logo which enables architects to raise awareness of their registered status

Key Highlights
• Following a Periodic Review, ARB’s role as regulator of the profession and the UK’s competent authority was reaffirmed
• Brexit FAQs published to support architects and those looking to enter the register who have queries about the potential impact of the UK’s withdrawal from the EU
• The new Architects Code: Standards of Professional Conduct and Practice was introduced at the beginning of 2017 following public consultation
• An online tool was introduced to allow for evidence of misuse of the title ‘architect’ to be more easily uploaded
• Our online Welcome Pack for those joining the Register for the first time was launched
• We supported the work of the Architecture Trailblazer Group by advising the group to ensure alignment with ARB’s requirements for prescription and registration
• To inform our regular cyclical review of our Criteria and Procedures for the Prescription of Qualifications, we held five round-table events in Glasgow, Belfast, Cardiff, Nottingham and London to hear stakeholders’ views first hand

Karen Holmes, Registrar and Chief Executive of ARB, said “The reaffirmation of ARB’s role in March 2017 as regulator of the profession provided welcome stability and clarity to our role. As an organisation we are committed to continuous improvement, during 2017 we embarked on further reviews of our policies and procedures to ensure our regulatory activities are proportionate, effective and efficient.”

Nabila Zulfiqar, Chair of ARB said “I became Chair of ARB in 2017 and have been privileged to support it through a period of change. During 2017, our activities included implementing many of the Government’s recommendations from the Periodic Review and embarking on a review of our Criteria and Procedures for the prescription of qualifications. It’s important that ARB continues to develop as a progressive and innovative regulator. We believe in collaborative working and going forward we will seek to inform our strategy and policy decisions through research dedicated to, and continued engagement with, our valued stakeholders.”


Notes for Editors

ARB is the statutory body established by Parliament under the Architects Act 1997 to regulate the UK architects’ profession in the public interest. The Act requires ARB (among other things) to:

• Maintain the Register of Architects (Section 3)
• Prescribe qualifications for entry to the Register of Architects (Section 4)
• Deal with competence to practise (Section 9)
• Issue a Code which lays down standards of professional conduct and practice (Section 13)
• Regulate use of the title “architect” and prosecute those who use it unlawfully (Section 20)

ARB has a Board of 15 members, either elected or appointed, to represent the interests of consumers and users of architectural services.

For an overview of our year in numbers, visit the Fact & Figures section of our Annual Report.

For further information, please contact Kate Howlett, Communications Lead on 020 7580 5861 or by email at