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Architects in Europe with different view over threats and opportunities

Fear of no assignments is most widely-spread among the Spanish, Italian and Dutch architects. Renovation is seen as the major opportunity by the British architects. These are some of the results of Q3 2011 report of the European Architectural Barometer, a quarterly study among 1,200 architects in Europe. Architects from 6 European countries have their specific expectations about the threats and the opportunities for this year. The opinions are to a great extent influenced by the consequences of the economic crisis in each of the countries.

In Spain, Italy and the Netherlands, architects have suffered from fewer assignments due to the crisis. In the same countries, architects are still afraid that the trend for fewer assignments will also continue in the coming months - Dutch (29%), Spanish (54%) and Italian (61%) architects pointed out that the lack of assignments is seen as the biggest threat. At the same time, architects in each of these counties have their own view about the future opportunities. Spanish architects see possibilities in new sectors, while the Italian architects expect improvements only if the government gives impulses to the sector.

For 42% of the French architects, the crisis was equivalent to postponed assignments; but in the future, price wars are expected on the market by almost 30% of them. The same share of architects does not see any opportunities for the coming months. For two out of three German architects, the economic crisis has had no consequences on their company. This explains to a great extent why 38% of the architects do not see any threats, and 28% also do not see any opportunities for this year.

Due to the crisis, British architects are suffering from less and smaller assignments. For this reason, they continue to regard smaller assignments as the biggest threat for the coming months, too (41%). For them, the biggest opportunities have to be looked for in renovation projects (51%).

These and many other results and trends of the development of the European construction market can be found in the European Architectural Barometer, an international research among 1,200 architects in Europe. Four times a year, this study is conducted by Arch-Vision in Germany, France, Italy, Spain, United Kingdom and the Netherlands. Besides indicators to forecast European building volumes, a topic is highlighted each quarter (in Q3 2011, the special topic is Sustainability). Architects can be used not only as a reliable source for future building volumes information, but their role is very important as they have great influence on how projects are built and which materials are used.