- Article by Online Editor
You’ll have no doubt noticed some profound changes to the magazine. Over the course of its distinguished 35-year history, Architectural Review has undergone many evolutions and changes in focus, but this is probably the most radical of all. We’ve thought long and hard about the magazine’s place in the world and what its offering should be, and we have come to the conclusion that while there is much to be gained from a focus on projects and stunning photography – inspiration and information above all – perhaps that format doesn’t provide the best help when it comes to architecture practices actually running their businesses.
Hence the new look AR – with a tag to its title – the business of architecture. From now on this magazine will have a primary focus on business – with articles, interviews and opinion pieces that will help architects in the complex everyday task of running their practices.
If it’s beautiful photography you crave, well, we’ll still feature some of that too, but there are multiple outlets to access such material – a whole internet full of it, it often seems.
The new aim of the magazine is to home in on the essential practicalities of architecture – to provide a resource that will help you write a tender, address such issues as succession planning, market your business or learn about new and game changing technology. These are all topics covered in this issue of AR.
The magazine will cover three general sections: business, design and applications. In the first section of the magazine, each issue will have a cover story/interview – no longer will this always be with a leading designer or practising architect. It could, for example, be with the chief financial officer of a practice, the managing director or, as is the case in this issue where we talk to Woods Bagot’s Larisa Moran, the chief operating officer. But we want to explore the real worlds of all practices, large and small – so alongside our lead story we will continue to feature an emerging practice and begin to look at the very specific challenges involved in firms just starting out and setting up shop.
The middle section of the magazine will be where we focus on design – with at least two main projects linked to our featured interviews.
Applications will be the section in which we’ll investigate new products, services and ideas of practical interest to architecture studios and all who work in the built environment. In this issue, we throw the spotlight on a range of highly innovative products, all winners in this year’s Incubator competition at DesignBUILD.
Of course there’s always room for debate and discussion about the nature of the profession and the ideals that practitioners strive to reach on a daily basis. In columns like the Brain Trust, the Debate and Opinion, industry experts will offer their thoughts on a range of fundamental topics. In this issue, John Wardle and Lindsay Urquhart debate the pros and cons of insourcing versus outsourcing, while the subject of gender inequity again rears its problematic head in both Penny Craswell’s opinion piece and our inaugural Brain Trust article.
But it’s not all about the present and the future – we’re also looking back, back to some of our most renowned and even iconic buildings to when they were still little more than twinkles in their creators’ eyes. Our Skeletons column will feature historical plans, sketches and blueprints to remind us all how things used to be done and how much (or little) has changed since then.
It’s a very different direction for AR and I’m sure there will be many responses and reactions to the changes. And I look forward to hearing and reading each and every one of them.
– Madeleine Swain, Editor