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Future Trends Survey 2020

Future Trends monitors the employment and business trends affecting the architectural profession. These are the survey results from 2020.

Future Trends 2020

The RIBA Future Trends Workload Index monitored architects’ views through one of the most challenging years experienced by the profession.

The RIBA Future Trends Workload Index fell to its lowest figure in 2020, a balance figure of -82, in April. At that time the UK was in its first lockdown, clients were rapidly putting projects on hold, building sites were closed, and architects were adjusting to home working.

However, by July, architects were back to anticipating growth in future workloads, and the Workload Index avoided a drop into negative territory for the rest of the year, even as further lockdowns were announced. Residential work proved invaluable for new commissions.

Through 2020, UK architects' practices again demonstrated ability to lead adaptation to new circumstance.

About RIBA Future Trends

Launched as part of a suite of economy focused initiatives, the survey is completed monthly by a sample representing a cross section of members. The survey is focused on areas in which members may face potential difficulties, including workload, staff levels and work in specific sectors.

Monthly results are independently analysed in order to identify the employment and business trends affecting the profession and to help to identify implications for the profession and inform further RIBA activities.

The Future Trends survey was devised by the RIBA Research and Development and Practice departments and launched in January 2009. It is run in collaboration with The Fees Bureau, which conducts the surveys and analyses the data.

All reports for 2020 are available at the bottom of this page.

You can also view the Future Trends 2019 survey results.

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