AASA - Providing leadership and advocacy for architectural education in Australasia
Tuesday November 19, 2019
Early in October the AASA held its Annual General Meeting/Heads of school meeting at Unitec Institute of Technology in Auckland. We had close to 40 delegates from Australia, New Zealand, PNG, South Africa and Hong Kong attended the event.
The 2-day meeting was packed with a diverse range of programs and workshops. We started the day with the reporting of our activities in the last 12 months to our members, including the financial position of AASA, completion of audit report, some of the projects that we are currently undertaking and new initiatives. We also managed to establish new relationships beyond Australia and New Zealand by making a connection with the Board of Architects Malaysia, Fiji National University, University of Hong Kong and the Association of Collegiate Schools of Architecture. Some of the projects that have been successfully delivered by the Executive and portfolio leaders include:
- The appointment of Yusef Patel to lead AASA Communication Portfolio. In the last 14 months, Yusef conducted a review of the AASA website and preparation of newsletter
- Collation of Indigenous archive material by Professor Michael Tawa
- The launching of Digital Learning Research Grant in May led by eLearning Portfolio Leader Steven Feast. The grant was awarded to Griffith University and UNSW in May 2019, and the report will be presented to members in 2020 AGM.
- AASA’s 3–year financial sponsorship to Parlour and one-off sponsorship to Monash University’s NTRO in Architecture Workshop.
- Establishment of Australian Modernism group. This portfolio is led by Professor Deborah Ascher Barnstone
- Establishment of Inaugural AASA Education Prize for Early Career Academics under the guidance of Professor Chris Knapp and generous support from Warren and Mahoney (Auckland), the host for the exhibition and presentation.
- In April 2019, the AASA became an affiliate member of the Association of Collegiate Schools of Architecture
- The Malaysian Architects Board delegation was hosted 18 October 2018 as planned with positive discussions held.
2019 has seen our membership growing steadily with Auckland University of Technology confirming their interest to join the AASA. Other institutions, such as Fiji National University, Notre Dame University, and Melbourne Polytechnic have also expressed interest to become a member.
This year, the AASA had the pleasure to invite Ms Jolanda Morkel Cape Peninsula University of Technology (CPUI) and Dr Douglas Macleod, Athabasca University (AU) and the Royal Architectural Institute of Canada (RAIC) to share their experience with e-learning with members on Day 1 of the AGM. For more information about their presentations, see Jolanda Morkel’s talk (35MB PPT) and workshop (14MB PPT), and Dr Douglas Macleod’s presentation (20MB PPT). The report from the workshop will also be available in due course.
An in-depth study of New Zealand student and graduate was presented by Professor Errol Haarhoof from the University of Auckland on Day 2. This 30-years research study is primarily focused on the progression of architecture graduates from educational programs into practice in New Zealand, including women in practice. See Haarhoof’s presentation (1.2MB PDF).
The AASA was also delighted to have Associate Professor Eric Schuldenfrei from University of Hong Kong (UHK) to attend the AGM/HoS meeting. While the architectural education model in UHK is similar to that of Australia and New Zealand (Hong Kong is a former British colony), there has been a shift towards a US model in recent years – how these changes in architectural education will impact the profession in Australia, New Zealand and beyond is an interesting topic. In terms of architectural research, Hong Kong also faces similar issues with NTRO however, what makes it even more complicated in Hong Kong is the fact that research is an underdeveloped area in architectural education. Other discussions include Hong Kong’s tenure system and funding model.
Another highlight of the AGM/HoS was the launching of AASA Education Prize for Early Career Academics exhibition and presentation at Warren and Mahoney on 1 October 2019 with more than 80 guests attended the event.
The AASA is also pleased to announce that Peter McPherson, AASA President (Unitec) and Dr Tanja Glusac, AASA Hon. Secretary (Curtin University) will continue their respective roles at the AASA for another two years. Their nominations have been unanimously supported by the AASA membership.
Finally, the AASA would like to thanks our long-term collaborators, including Kate Doyle, CEO, Architects Accreditation Council of Australia; Dr Chris Smith, National Education Committee Chair, the Australian Institute of Architects; Gina Englehardt, President, SONA and Dayna Hellem, SANNZ for their support to the AASA.