Founded in 1951, incorporated in 1955 and granted a Royal Charter in 1969, the Australian Institute of Building (AIB) is an association of building professionals, associate professionals and technicians engaged in building practice, teaching or research throughout Australia and overseas.
The vision of the Australian Institute of Building is progressive, inclusive and recognised throughout the building and construction industry as the arbiter of knowledge and learning.
In order to deliver our value proposition, AIB will:
- Advance through learning
- Accredit university courses
- Partner with our members in their careers
- Promote the value of using the term Chartered Building Professional
- Advocate on behalf of members aims
- Facilitate the exchange of information and ideas
- Foster research
- Ensure good Governance and management
- Operate under a culture of Corporate & Social Responsibility
- Inculcate a culture of professional excellence amongst young builders
Following World War II the building industry was confronted with a huge programme of civil and commercial building. This called for improved productivity, more intelligent use of resources available and the development of new techniques and new material. Leaders of the industry appreciated that building was developing from empirical craft processes to a technological discipline spanning physical sciences and involving construction techniques which were unknown in the early part of the 20th Century. Development in the science of environment and building services had also added a new dimension to building technology.
As building involved investment of public and private capital to a greater extent than any other commodity, rational, economic and efficient working was essential. Skill in the management of building work is as important as the technology itself. A trend to higher educational standards and a more positive approach to training executive and technical staff of Building organisations was clearly required.
The effect of this impact on the building industry was to highlight the need for a professional body to promote efficiency and establish a high standard of technological education for those engaged on the construction side of the industry.
A ‘Committee of Investigation’ was set up in 1947 by a convention called by the then Master Builders’ Federation of Australia (MBFA) which, although firmly established since 1890, was not acceptable as a professional body because it was an employers’ organisation. There was agreement that an Institute should be constituted on professional lines to represent the construction side of the building industry, and both the Royal Australian Institute of Architects (RAIA) and the Institution of Engineers Australia (IEAust) agreed to assist in selecting the foundation membership.
The Australian Institute of Builders was established in 1951 with a foundation membership determined by a selection committee in each state, comprising two representatives of the RAIA, one representative of the IEAust and two representatives of the MBFA. The Foundation Members also included members of the Building Diplomats Association of NSW, associated with the Sydney Technical College.
In 23 November 1951 the Foundation Dinner was held in Sydney and the then Mr Robert Menzies, Prime Minister of Australia, was presented with a Certificate of Honorary Membership.
The Institute was incorporated on 15 November 1955, granted Armorial Bearings on 20 August 1960 and incorporated by Royal Charter on 7 October 1969, despite the protests of the CIOB(UK). It had, on 26 May 1967, changed its name to The Australian Institute of Building (AIB).
Having established itself and received recognition accorded by a Royal Charter, the Institute began to redefine its educational requirements at Licentiate and Corporate grade.
It then set about ensuring that the then degree and certificate courses in building which were available met the standards which the Institute required. From this has developed a course assessment/qualification accreditation system which has proven to be of great value to academic institutions and the industry.
While graduates in building were recognised immediately by the private sector, recognition in the public sector was harder to achieve. The breakthrough came in 1977 with the recognition by the Public Service Board of Degrees in Building for the positions of Project Manager Class 1-3, Area Manager Class 1-3 and Construction Manager. Recognition of the AIB as a professional institute was accorded in the Commonwealth Gazette in March 1983. This approval, under the Industrial Research and Development Incentives Act, recognises Corporate members of the Institute as professionally qualified.
Since its establishment in 1968 the Australian Institute of Building Research and Education Foundation has funded developments in education and specific research projects. One of these projects determined the duties and responsibilities of, and the levels of competence required by, professionals and technicians in the Building industry. In 1990 the AIB became an Associate of the International Council for Building Research (CIB). The AIB Papers, a journal of refereed academic papers, has been published by the Institute since 1986.
The By-laws and Regulations were amended to allow for changes to grades of member in 1981, 1992 and 1997.
With the Foundation of a New Zealand Institute of Building (NZIOB) in 1984, the New Zealand Chapter of the AIB was closed down. The AIB continues to have a close relationship with NZIOB.
In 1997 the AIB became a foundation member of the International Association for the Professional Management of Construction (IAPMC).
So as to streamline management decisions, in 1996 the Council delegated most of its authority to an Executive Board of Management.
Pending development of industry wide competency based standards, the Institute produced standards for its own membership purposes. These standards are also used for assessing applicants for the National Building Professionals Register (NBPR) which the AIB launched in 1997.
A Hong Kong Chapter and Singapore Chapter were established in 1998, and AIB’s overseas operations expanded considerably ten years later.