Scope of architecture jobs in Ireland


I’m planning to take a master’s degree in architecture in Ireland. What is the scope of architecture jobs?

May 10, 21 6:37 am
James Bragg

This thread deals with your query.

May 11, 21 11:33 am  · 
1  · 

Hi Abhishekanpat,

Good to hear you are starting your MArch in Ireland, which school could I ask? 

The culture of architecture in Ireland is unusually strong as there isn't a very strong history of design disciplines in Ireland, but the past 20 years has seen a massive culture develop around architecture - particularly due to practices like de Blacam and Meagher (who proposed another way of thinking about modernism in Ireland other then Scott Tallon Walker's Miesian approach). As well as Grafton Architects (who recently ran the 2018 Architecture Venice Biennale), O'Donnell + Tuomey, Heneghan Peng, Bucholz McEvoy - all of whom are mid-sized practices which are at the centre of what you might call 'critical' architectural practice in Ireland (a mid-sized practice in Ireland is about 20 - 40 people). Ireland's largest firms are O'Mahony Pike and Henry J Lyons.

As Ireland is small (<5 million people) the architectural culture is also fairly tight-knit, so smaller practices play quite a large role in the discourse - practices such as GKMP, Ryan W. Kennihan, TAKA, Clancy Moore all do very high quality work, focussing mainly on small-scale projects, houses and extensions. But all of these practices are part of a movement to open up procurement opportunities for smaller practices to move into larger scale work - see 'We Can Build Better' (Ireland has a strange legacy issue with European Procurement which means it interprets it in a very rigid way to the detriment of younger practices).

Stylistically - The scene is often spoken of as a sort of mix between the Belgian and Swiss architecture cultures, with a particular focus on the importance of architectural history and critical regionalism. As the culture is small it can be a bit stale, but younger practices are pushing the boundaries of what the scope of the architect's role is, and newer schools like the MArch at University College Cork are sort of disruptive to what others on the outside would regard as an 'Irish' architecture scene. Larger practices like Grafton and O'Donnell + Tuomey play a large legacy in most Irish schools of architecture which I think is usually easy to see, but issues around climate change and biodiversity loss are really shaking up curriculums and letting other references in.

The scope of architectural practice is really limited to making buildings in Ireland, there are practices engaging in urban design at the larger scale, although quite often on very large projects the expertise just isn't there - and non-Irish practices will take the lead on this. Landscape architecture is also not taken very seriously as a discipline or profession, and is quite new to the country - although many other countries seem to suffer with this problem. Younger practices are sort of beginning to push at this a bit but the critical mass really isn't quite there to fully challenge it. 

That might answer your query in sort of a roundabout way.

For more info see:

The Irish Architecture Foundation (IAF)

The Architectural Association of Ireland (AAI)

The Royal Institute of Architects in Ireland (RIAI)

Irish Landscape Institute (ILI)

May 14, 21 10:23 am  · 

why is it called the royal institute of architects? who is the irish royalty?

May 14, 21 11:35 am  · 
1  · 

It's an imperial legacy that we can't seem to shrug off (it was founded during British occupation of Ireland) - there was a vote to remove it a few years ago but people seem to think it sounds sophisticated.

May 14, 21 11:51 am  · 
1  · 

hi you are talking about your 

Scope of architecture jobs in Ireland

i suggest you have search on google your question thanking for sharing this 

May 14, 21 5:08 pm  · 
1  · 


Thanks for the helpful information regarding the architecture scenario in Ireland. 

I received an offer letter for the Master of Science Sustainable Energy Engineering program from Waterford institute of technology, Ireland. I’m planning to take that degree.

May 22, 21 12:19 am  · 

the job prospectus is tough, especially for international students. Honestly thé degrees here are not worth it. It’s expensive, not good quality and you can’t work as an architect directly. You should clear the license exams in ireland after working for two years under an Irish registered architect. Even if you have masters you still have to go for this procedure. So that’s like one year of masters+ 2 years of post graduate experience + 1 year of license exams, then if you pass you can work as an architect. Also the license exams are not easy. Is it worth it? I’m guessing you are an international student, so you will be spending a lot!!! Also the cost of living is so high in Ireland. It’s nearly impossible to even find a Place to stay. Please google and understand the cost of living before you prepare to come here. Expenses are really high. 

Jul 23, 22 1:56 pm  · 

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