The AIA Strategic Council, formed as part of the AIAs new governance model, met in early February in New Orleans to discuss and explore issues affecting the profession and Institute.  With an emphasis on providing direction to the Strategic Planning Committee, the Council explored a variety of issues on both professional and organizational topics.  

The Council examined and discussed the social impact of hurricane Katrina as well as some well-intended, yet questionably successful responses to community needs.  Some of these responses were specific attempts of the design profession to address local needs while others were more focused on the response as opposed to need.  This exercise preceded the council’s efforts to examine ongoing efforts within the Institute as well as needs to addressing member value and practice.  The meeting was held as part of the AIA’s effort to create and establish the Strategic Council, a visionary body of the organization that will assist the Board and management in focusing on issues that are important to members.  The Council explored a number of defined issues through empathy and STEEP exercises intended to better focus and refine the AIA goals and objectives.  

The primary focus of the Council in 2015 is to establish an organizational structure that will carry the new body forward while providing important feedback to the national Strategic Planning Committee.  The 2016-2020 Strategic Plan is expected to be presented to the AIA Board of Director at their September 2015 Board Meeting.