Founded in 1951, incorporated in 1955 and granted a Royal Charter in 1969, the Australian Institute of Building (AIB) is an association of building professionals, associate professionals and technicians engaged in building practice, teaching or research throughout Australia and overseas.
The mission of AIB is to be a leading body of focus for the building industry, valued for its services to its members, reflecting its ideals for education, standards and ethics and the source of authoritative and visionary comment on behalf of professionals in the industry. Its objectives are:
- To promote excellence in the construction of buildings and just and honourable practices in the conduct of business;
- To advance the study of Building and all kindred matters, arts and sciences;
- To encourage the friendly exchange between members of knowledge in practical, technical and ethical subjects; and
- To uphold the dignity of the profession of Building and the status of the Institute.
Following World War II the building industry was confronted with a huge programme of civil and commercial building. This called for improved productivity, more intelligent use of resources available and the development of new techniques and new material. Leaders of the industry appreciated that building was developing from empirical craft processes to a technological discipline spanning physical sciences and involving construction techniques which were unknown in the early part of the 20th Century. Development in the science of environment and building services had also added a new dimension to building technology.
As building involved investment of public and private capital to a greater extent than any other commodity, rational, economic and efficient working was essential. Skill in the management of building work is as important as the technology itself. A trend to higher educational standards and a more positive approach to training executive and technical staff of Building organisations was clearly required.
The effect of this impact on the building industry was to highlight the need for a professional body to promote efficiency and establish a high standard of technological education for those engaged on the construction side of the industry.
A ‘Committee of Investigation’ was set up in 1947 by a convention called by the then Master Builders’ Federation of Australia (MBFA) which, although firmly established since 1890, was not acceptable as a professional body because it was an employers’ organisation. There was agreement that an Institute should be constituted on professional lines to represent the construction side of the building industry, and both the Royal Australian Institute of Architects (RAIA) and the Institution of Engineers Australia (IEAust) agreed to assist in selecting the foundation membership.
The Australian Institute of Builders was established in 1951 with a foundation membership determined by a selection committee in each state, comprising two representatives of the RAIA, one representative of the IEAust and two representatives of the MBFA. The Foundation Members also included members of the Building Diplomats Association of NSW, associated with the Sydney Technical College.
In 23 November 1951 the Foundation Dinner was held in Sydney and the then Mr Robert Menzies, Prime Minister of Australia, was presented with a Certificate of Honorary Membership.
The Institute was incorporated on 15 November 1955, granted Armorial Bearings on 20 August 1960 and incorporated by Royal Charter on 7 October 1969, despite the protests of the CIOB(UK). It had, on 26 May 1967, changed its name to The Australian Institute of Building (AIB).
Having established itself and received recognition accorded by a Royal Charter, the Institute began to redefine its educational requirements at Licentiate and Corporate grade.
It then set about ensuring that the then degree and certificate courses in building which were available met the standards which the Institute required. From this has developed a course assessment/qualification accreditation system which has proven to be of great value to academic institutions and the industry.
While graduates in building were recognised immediately by the private sector, recognition in the public sector was harder to achieve. The breakthrough came in 1977 with the recognition by the Public Service Board of Degrees in Building for the positions of Project Manager Class 1-3, Area Manager Class 1-3 and Construction Manager. Recognition of the AIB as a professional institute was accorded in the Commonwealth Gazette in March 1983. This approval, under the Industrial Research and Development Incentives Act, recognises Corporate members of the Institute as professionally qualified.
Since its establishment in 1968 the Australian Institute of Building Research and Education Foundation has funded developments in education and specific research projects. One of these projects determined the duties and responsibilities of, and the levels of competence required by, professionals and technicians in the Building industry. In 1990 the AIB became an Associate of the International Council for Building Research (CIB). The AIB Papers, a journal of refereed academic papers, has been published by the Institute since 1986.
The By-laws and Regulations were amended to allow for changes to grades of member in 1981, 1992 and 1997.
With the Foundation of a New Zealand Institute of Building (NZIOB) in 1984, the New Zealand Chapter of the AIB was closed down. The AIB continues to have a close relationship with NZIOB.
In 1997 the AIB became a foundation member of the International Association for the Professional Management of Construction (IAPMC).
So as to streamline management decisions, in 1996 the Council delegated most of its authority to an Executive Board of Management.
Pending development of industry wide competency based standards, the Institute produced standards for its own membership purposes. These standards are also used for assessing applicants for the National Building Professionals Register (NBPR) which the AIB launched in 1997.
A Hong Kong Chapter and Singapore Chapter were established in 1998, and AIB’s overseas operations expanded considerably ten years later.
At a meeting of the Privy Council at Arundel Park on 31 July 1969 , Her Majesty the Queen approved granting of a Charter. AIB was incorporated as a ‘body corporate and politic’ by Royal Charter on 7 October 1969.
When the Royal Charter was granted letters of congratulation were received from the former Prime Minister Sir Robert Menzies, the serving Prime Ministers of Australia and New Zealand, all State Premiers, and most of the related professional associations in Australia and overseas. Prince Philip, Duke of Edinburgh, an Honorary Fellow of AIB, sent a congratulatory telegram.
AIB was a proud recipient and it was regarded as a collective honour for all the members. One of the privileges provided by the Charter is the right for all corporate members to use the title of Chartered Builder. Australians were the first builders in the world to gain this title.
The AIB Royal Charter can be viewed at the national office in Canberra, Australia.
AIB National President’s
The Australian Institute of Building (AIB) is lead by a national President who is typically selected on the basis of leadership in business, the broader building profession and often in the community service. Amongst their numbers include Sir Manuel Hornibrook OBE FAIB and Sir Albert Jennings FAIB, respectively of Baulderstone Hornibrook and AV Jennings fame.
The following is the complete list of AIB Presidents:
|1951—1952||Fred Wilson OBE FAIB|
|1952—1956||Sir Manuel Hornibrook OBE FAIB|
|1956—1958||George Augustus Winwood JP FAIB|
|1958—1960||Henry Wilckens FAIB|
|1960—1962||Harold Alfred Doust FAIB|
|1962—1964||Thomas Meredith Lipscombe JP FAIB|
|1964—1966||Sir Albert Victor Jennings FAIB|
|1966—1968||Frederick Ormond Watts OBE FAIB|
|1966—1968||Sir Keith Douglas Morris OBE JP FAIB|
|1970—1972||Albert Leslie Rigby AM ED JP FAIB|
|1972—1974||John Anderson Taylor FAIB|
|1974—1976||Victor Talbot Edwards FAIB|
|1976—1978||Robert Arthur O’Neill JP FAIB|
|1978—1980||Harold David McGonigal FAIB|
|1980—1982||Ronald Albert Swane AM FAIB|
|1982—1984||Donald (Bill) Cockram MBE FAIB|
|1984—1986||Donald Sarah AM FAIB|
|1986—1988||Charles Williams Martin AM FAIB|
|1988—1990||Anthony John Underwood FAIB|
|1990—1992||Richard Hatherly Humphries FAIB|
|1992—1994||Robert Leslie Greaves AM FAIB|
|1994—1996||John Collins Hutchinson AM FAIB|
|1996—1997||Ronald William Beslich OAM FAIB|
|1997—1999||John David Thomas FAIB|
|1999—2001||Peter Sydney Fardoulys AM FAIB|
|2001—2003||Graham Andrew Fricker AM FAIB|
|2003—2004||Peter Hansen FAIB|
|2004—2006||Thomas John Morris FAIB|
|2006—2008||Robin Peter Fardoulys FAIB|
|2008—2010||Patrick Clive Toomey FAIB|
|2010—2012||Gregory Darcy McLean FAIB|
|2012—2014||Robert Whittaker AM FAIB|
|2014—2016||Norman Abraham Faifer FAIB|
|2016-Current||Paul Heather AM FAIB JP|
AIB Chief Executive Officers
Since its formation in 1951 the Australian Institute of Building (AIB) there have been seven people appointed to the Chief Executive role.
The title of the position has varied but the essential role of the job remains as providing administrative leadership and legislative policy advice to the Council and Board.
AIB’s members have been well served by:
|1951—1972||Murray Gosper AM OBE|
|1973—1990||Hugh Gordon LVO DFC|
|2005—2009||Troy Williams MAICD|
|2009—2016||Robert Hunt CPA|
|2016 – Current||Greg Hughes|