Royal Institute of British Architects

The Royal Institute of British Architects (RIBA) is a professional body for architects primarily in the United Kingdom, but also internationally, founded for the advancement of architecture under its royal charter granted in 1837, three supplemental charters and a new charter granted in 1971.

Royal Institute of British Architects
Formation1834; 188 years ago (1834)
TypeProfessional membership body
Legal statusChartered body corporate and registered charity
PurposeThe objectives of the RIBA, as set out in its Charter, are the Advancement of Architecture and the promotion of the acquiring of knowledge of the Arts and Sciences connected therewith.
Headquarters66 Portland Place, London, W1
Region served
Predominantly UK with increasing global membership
29,203 chartered architects (2020)[1]
Chief Executive
Alan Vallance
Simon Allford
Main organ
RIBA Board & RIBA Council
309 (2019)[2]
RIBA Headquarters

Founded as the Institute of British Architects in London in 1834, the RIBA retains a central London headquarters at 66 Portland Place as well as a network of regional offices. Its members played a leading part in the promotion of architectural education in the United Kingdom; the RIBA Library, also established in 1834, is one of the three largest architectural libraries in the world and the largest in Europe. The RIBA also played a prominent role in the development of UK architects' registration bodies.

The institute administers some of the oldest architectural awards in the world, including President's Medals and the Royal Gold Medal, plus the Stirling Prize. It also manages RIBA Competitions which organises architectural and other design-related competitions.

The RIBA was historically a male-dominated body, first admitting women members in 1898, and only appointing its first female president in 2009. Sometimes perceived as a London-centric organisation, it has also been accused of lacking transparency.

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