3rd December 2014
The following comment was received from Malachy Mathews, a former RIAI Architectural Technologist in response to the blog post The future for Architectural Technologists is outside the RIAI | Joe Byrne that was published on Monday.
A great piece, by Joe Byrne, so true and so telling. 30 years ago I led a delegation of Architectural Technologists (ATs) into the Royal Institute of Architects (RIAI) in Merrion Square with the aim of seeking better representation. Here we are now, no support, no representation and the outing of the exclusive nature of the RIAI. If the RIAI had represented ATs at the negotiating table with the Department of the Environment the profession and country would have benefited. Instead they (the RIAI President, CEO and Council) chose to prevent any inclusion of a professional AT to the statutory duties of Assigned and Design certifier and peddled the idea of the very “important role” for ATs of ancillary certification ( a role many architects now seek for themselves!).
At my first RIAI Council meeting as elected Chair of the RIAI Architectural Technologist Committee (ATC) I spoke of seeking “Parity of Esteem” similar to Kevin Tyrell’s recent calls for Equity not Equality. There was plenty of head nodding, plenty of platitudes but no action.
I resigned from the position of chairman of the RIAI ATC and resigned from the RIAI in 2012 when I recognised that despite the hard work, I and the committee members were doing for the good of the profession, both Architects and Architectural Technologists, the RIAI silo mentality and frankly perceived superior ethos would not change an iota.
I could call it wasted time and wasted effort but it was not, because if you do not engage you cannot comment with authority. If you do not engage you cannot learn and you will not develop the network necessary to take the argument forward. So I echo Joe Byrne’s call to have the effort “channeled in the correct manner to achieve that long sought after professional recognition”, …now outside of the RIAI.
Other posts of interest: