Robert Ivy became the Executive Vice President and CEO of the American Institute of Architects (AIA) in 2011, and he has been its guiding voice ever since. Part of his focus while he has been with the AIA has been on the organization’s ability to connect with the modern day world. The rest of his focus is, of course, on the design, construction, and building sectors and how the institute can improve these.
He feels that architecture can improve the United States in a broad variety of helpful ways, and the AIA recently committed to create solutions and programs that improve sustainability, health of the public, and defense against natural disasters in the U.S.A. Ivy and the AIA have also committed to research done in universities by offering grants and is also working to create an app.
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When Robert Ivy was asked to elaborate about exactly how architecture can improve public health, he pointed out how it has been historically useful in the United States. One of the examples he used was Central Park and how architecture helped to eliminate shoddy housing and improve that part of the city. The original designers didn’t have recreation in mind when they created the park but were more interested in improving the health of the public through the park according to aiainternational.org. He also spoke about how there are many younger architects who are now more socially engaged and that have a strong desire to work with a more diverse population.
CEO Robert Ivy has expressed his belief that architecture can lower the rate of diseases like diabetes and heart disease and that design can be leveraged to encourage exercise. Along with this, an architect can provide the people who work in a building with access to natural features like clean water, sunlight, and fresh air. He also discussed how the materials used in a building are extremely important because they can actually help to improve health in some cases. Generally speaking, Robert Ivy has expressed the fact that the American Institute Of Architects and himself are interested not just in maintaining the public’s health through architecture, but also improving it. During interviews he has pointed to historical uses of architecture that have improved the health of the public, and he aspires to continue to be a larger part of designing buildings and other architectural features to make the world a better place. Already, he has improved the way that the organization communicates with the public, and this is just the beginning of the upgrades being made to the AIA.
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