Why does the landscape architecture profession need professional societies? Q&A

Logos of the UK Landscape Institute LI and the American Society of Landscape Architects ASLA

Question: Why does the landscape profession need professional societies?

Short answer. Yes. Institutes, societies and similar bodies have a vital role: in promoting landscape architecture, in maintaining standards – and in raising standards.

Since the other professions, including engineers, architects and surveyors, have professional institutes, the landscape architecture profession would be disadvantaged if it did not have one. This surely true but it does not follow that a professional body can do all the things which a profession needs. For example, such bodies are not well-suited to promoting the profession or criticising other professions or criticising government policy. They don’t want to bite the hands that feed them. Nor are they suited to providing critical appraisals of work carried out by their members.