The American Institute of Architects (AIA) and Public Architecture signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) on December 13, 2011 in San Francisco, marking the start of a new partnership to support pro bono design.
Through the new relationship, the AIA and Public Architecture will encourage AIA members to pledge to The 1%, a nationwide program of Public Architecture that challenges architecture and design firms to commit a minimum of 1% of their time to pro bono service and facilitates a matching service to connect firms with nonprofits seeking pro bono design services.
AIA and Public Architecture have agreed to build a portal on The 1% website to launch later this year that will support and track AIA members' service contributions to communities in need. Service contributions pledged through The 1% are valued today at nearly $40 million annually.
"While architecture professionals have traditionally been philanthropic, until now the profession has never institutionalized pro bono service as a fundamental component of practice," said John Peterson, AIA, Founder and President of Public Architecture. "This partnership is a historic leap forward towards a more comprehensive commitment to creating better environments in all communities."