Print this page Share

Ethics and the Practice of Architecture

ISBN: 978-0-471-29822-9
336 pages
March 2000
Ethics and the Practice of Architecture (0471298220) cover image


From theory to practice a unique, well-rounded guide to ethics for today s architect

How does an architect assist a community in evaluating alternative designs? Resolve a dispute with a contractor? Take into account a project s impact on the natural environment?

When it comes to questions like these, making decisions about what ought to be done or what is the "best" or "right" solution requires more than sound technical knowledge and strong design talent. It demands a solid understanding of the ethical issues that lie at the heart of architectural practice.

Ethics and the Practice of Architecture offers a complete, broad-based introduction to this crucial subject. First, it examines basic ethical theories and their application to architecture, and discusses different ways of identifying ethical content in architecture. Bridging the gap between theory and practice, the second part of the book surveys different professional settings and building project processes that frequently hold ethical concerns, and charts the ethical mandates that arise from them.

In the final section of the book, thirty case studies explore a wide range of ethical dilemmas encountered in architectural practice, with useful guidance on how to work through them effectively. Arranged by topics that span the key phases of a project from pre-design through post-occupancy evaluation, these case studies allow a detailed look at ethical concerns in real-life situations where multiple issues are often at stake.

Providing a practical framework for the exploration of ethical issues in architecture today, Ethics and the Practice of Architecture is an excellent resource for present and future architects in all areas of the field.
See More

Table of Contents


Introduction to Awareness.

Some Basics About Ethics.

The Ethical Nature of Architecture.

A More In-Depth Look at Ethical Concepts.

Businesses, Professions, and Ethical Obligations.

Ethics and Architectural Practices.

Ethical Reasoning.


A Closer Look at Being an Architect.

A Closer Look at Making Architecture.

A Closer Look at Doing Architecture Ethically.


Introduction to Choices.

Making Ethical Judgments.

Case Studies.



Notes to the Text.

Works Cited in the Notes.

Works Recommended for Further Study.

Additional Architectural References.

Additional Information About the Photographs.

See More

Author Information

BARRY WASSERMAN, FAIA, is Professor Emeritus in the Department of Architecture at California State Polytechnic University in Pomona, California, and heads his own architecture, urban design, and community facilitation firm.

PATRICK SULLIVAN, FAIA, is a professor in the Department of Architecture at California State Polytechnic University in Pomona, California, and Principal of Patrick Sullivan Associates.

GREGORY PALERMO, FAIA, is Associate Professor and Associate Chair for Undergraduate Studies in the Department of Architecture of the College of Design at Iowa State University in Ames, Iowa.
See More


"...an invaluable piece of work, with its brisk tables and summaries should be compulsory reading for architecture students." (Architecture Review, October 2000)

"The Authors of Ethics and the Practice of Architecture bring a wealth of scholarship and experience to a subject that is not often so well explored." (Journal of Architectural Education, February 2003

See More
Back to Top