Newly-appointed president at The Royal Institute of British Architects, Jack Pringle (pictured), has pledged to continue to build alliances with the design community, as he reveals plans to launch an alternative membership scheme for the design sector.
In an exclusive interview with Design Week, Pringle says he would like the organisation to ‘offer something more concrete by way of membership’. Currently, non-architects can only join RIBA as affiliate members.
Pringle says the membership system could potentially target those from a variety of design sectors – the RIBA title would sit alongside an alternative suffix that would reference the specific design discipline. For instance, RIBA (ID) would represent the interior design sector, says Pringle.
How the system will function, its sub-divisions and membership qualifications are just some of the issues that have yet to be thrashed out and Pringle warns ‘we are a long way from getting this to be RIBA policy’.
‘The devil is in the detail here and we have to really think this one through, like what this will mean for the industry as a whole. In principle, however, we are behind this initiative. It is a win-win situation and we would be invigorated by the participation of others from different disciplines,’ he says.
Pringle’s predecessor, George Ferguson, sowed the seeds for increasing collaboration with the design community. He helped launch a ground-breaking joint venture – ID/O5 (DW 2 June) – that enabled the British Interior Design Association to work closer with RIBA on the provision of interior design services. Ferguson also advocated what he called ‘cross-dressing,’ a way of teaming up within the broader design community to help break down barriers across the built environment (DW 9 June).
Pringle’s ambitions continue this legacy as he aims to help consolidate RIBA’s position as a national centre for design.