ABSTRACT

This chapter addresses the notion of economy in relation to two discrete and overlapping themes. In the first instance, economic factors will be considered in relation to the wider economic circumstances. Second, economy will be considered in relation to the role architects are required to play in terms of reconciling creative ambition with the financial responsibilities and pressures that are exerted upon practice as a business. Economic factors also explore the role architecture plays within an evolving building industry and draws upon the experience of operating within different European building cultures. Architectural practice is part of the largest employment category, the service sector. Swiss architects are responsible for producing cost information within a very well structured convention. They are well trained by the three federal schools of architecture: ETH Zurich, EPFL Lausanne and the Accademia di Architettura in Mendrisio. The Swiss economy operates with a degree of autonomy and independence from the European Union and it is applied to homeownership.