CIOB: Modern professionalism is more than a brass plate outside your door

In a submission to the Government’s Panel on Fair Access to the Professions the Chartered Institute of Building (CIOB) has suggested that what currently constitutes a profession, or more broadly professionalism is outdated.

Professor John Bale CIOB Ambassador said; “In the 19th and early 20th centuries, the word ‘profession’ tended to be restricted to activities that were fee-paid. This was based on the assumption that you couldn’t get a competitive price without impartial professional advice by supposedly learned professionals in fusty offices.

“During the 20th century new professions emerged, frequently in activities performed within commercial industrial organisations, so that the distinction between ‘trade’ and ‘profession’ became increasingly outdated.

“We are a good example of how a professional body has successfully extended access to professions through widening the scope of its intake. This has been achieved without lowering the standards of entry, but by addressing the barriers that exist to obtaining the required qualifications. We believe our experience is relevant to the Panel, as the same principle could be applied to other industries.”

The CIOB has highlighted a number of areas where increased Government funding should be considered and barriers that need to be removed if access to the professions is to be improved. In particular, barriers that prevent people from retraining and moving in to a new profession must be addressed by government. The lack of career advice to young people has been identified as a major issue, and the CIOB recommends that funding be provided to support the training of career advisors. This will ensure a better understanding of the diversity of roles available and the overall importance of the built environment to the economy and to our quality of life.

To view the CIOB submission in full please go to



The Chartered Institute of BuildingThe Chartered Institute of Building (CIOB) represents for the public benefit the most diverse set of professionals in the construction industry.Our Mission

To contribute to the creation of a modern, progressive, and responsible construction industry; able to meet the economic, environmental and social challenges faced in the 21st century. Our 7 Guiding Principles

· Creating extraordinary people through professional learning and continuous personal development.
· Promoting the built environment as central to the quality of life for everyone everywhere.
· Achieving a sustainable future, worldwide.
· Advocating exemplary ethical practice and behaviour, integrity and transparency.
· Pursuing excellence in management practice, and technological innovation rooted in evidence based science.
· Being socially responsible and working responsibly.
· Enabling our members to find an emotional resonance with the Institute; their success is our success.

We have over 40,000 members around the world and are considered to be the international voice of the building professional, representing an unequalled body of knowledge concerning the management of the total building process.

Chartered Member status is recognised internationally as the mark of a true, skilled professional in the construction industry and CIOB members have a common commitment to achieving and maintaining the highest possible standards within the built environment.

Further information is available by contacting Saul Townsend CIOB press and communications manager on tel: 01344 630 766 or email: