Architecture At Cambridge?Tuesday, 9 November 2004 / Architecture
The Economist explains why the department was earmarked for closure and prompts Charles Clarke to look for an explanation.
In short: it’s expensive to educate architects.
Update: on 8 December 2004
The University voted to examine a future business plan for the school and in January 2005 the decision to continue was confirmed:
“The Department of Architecture of the University of Cambridge is to remain open. The General Board today welcomed recent restructuring changes and unanimously accepted the new academic strategy for the Department. The strategy, drawn up by the School of Arts and Humanities working with the Department, will see the Department focus its research on sustainable design. Building on existing strengths, the Department’s research expertise will be restructured to explore six themes within this overall research focus. New academic appointments – in the first instance, a professor and a university lecturer in the field of sustainable design, with consideration of additional appointments to follow – will be made possible by the early retirement or departure of six of the 17 academic staff of the Department. Consideration is also being given to ways of bringing research and teaching activities into a single site.” “Architecture decision from the University of Cambridge – 12 January 2005 [source: University of Cambridge]
So the excellent undergraduate course [Part 1 of the architect’s training] remains open. The Diploma course [Part 2], internationally renowned, remains for the moment closed. The Professional practice course [Part 3] remains functioning, as does the M Phil and research functions. Contact the school or Scroope (alumni pages) for further details.