The Times and the Guardian identified lack of client ambition in the UK as the reason why just two of the six buildings shortlisted for the Stirling prize are located in this country.
However, it is unfair to blame this solely on British clients when construction relies so heavily on collaboration. The UK industry is not operating in an integrated manner. This approach manifests itself in many ways, not least in preoccupation with price over value.
Also, the linear way projects are undertaken often sees construction companies brought in as the final piece of the puzzle. Better results are achieved when every part of the chain contributes from the embryonic stage.
Finally, the parochial nature of the UK industry is our worst enemy. Innovation can be found all over the world.
Verry built both the UK nominees for the Stirling – the Savill building and the Young Vic theatre. They are examples of what can be achieved when we collaborate from the start.
In truth, plenty of clients are prepared to innovate. As the spirit of integration becomes more common, we will see more examples of the internationally respected architecture for which Britain has long been renowned.
Geoff Taylor, director, Verry Construction