As the leading architectural organization, the American Institute of Architecture (AIA) has over 90,000 members. Its members are composed of licensed architects as well as associates. The AIA requires that all affiliated architects abide by a code of ethics. In this way, the organization strives to foster the public’s quality of life by improving and protecting the public’s welfare, health, and safety. Working in collaboration with designers, clients, and construction partners, AIA creates energy-saving buildings across the world.
With this in mind, the AIA’s derives its priorities from feedback collected from its members. In turn, feedback is used to create a blueprint of its advocacy agenda in city halls and state houses. For over 160 years, the AIA actively advances the interests of architects in several ways. Given that, AIA is committed to fostering sustainable and equitable communities as well as strong relationships. Let us consider several ways in which the AIA accomplishes its goals.
Human Rights and Equity
Good designs are a fundamental aspect of architectural practice with architects being agents that propel change in reality. AIA prides itself on its respect for basic civil and human rights that ensure respect for human dignity as well as impartiality regardless of race, gender, creed, or physical abilities. AIA proactively promotes tolerance through its policies that encourage just speech, actions, as well as sound design principles.
AIA embraces design and building principles that seek to minimize the harmful effects of carbon emissions. In this regard, the organization encourages its members to create high-performance buildings. AIA knows that reducing carbon emissions is beneficial to the environment as well as good for business. For instance, from 2011 to 2014, the use of green technologies in construction generated $167.4 billion on revenue. Besides that, green technology created over 2.1 million jobs and provided $147.7 billion in labor income. For this reason, the AIA encourages its affiliated members to adopt energy efficient construction materials, technologies, as well as industry practices.
Creation of Economic Opportunities
As they are entrepreneurs and owners of small business, architects form an important sector of the nation’s economy. With a majority of architects engaging in business from home, storefronts, and offices, they create lucrative jobs and employment opportunities. However, most experience challenges in meeting profit margins and operating costs. As a result, the AIA advocates for favorable federal tax policies that benefit architectural firms. As such, AIA is at the forefront of lobbying local, state, and national authorities for fair tax codes. In this way, AIA hopes to ensure that small and medium level architectural firms remain integral players in the national economy.
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