The RIBA has issued a five-year action plan to help architects become more efficient and give them enhanced status in society.

In a booklet, Meeting the Challenge, a Strategy for Architecture and Architects 1999-2003, published last week, the RIBA urges architects to face up to the requirements of more demanding clients, changes in the construction process and new technology.

The booklet also sets out a five-year development plan for improving the RIBA, including new systems for quantifying membership activity, improving member satisfaction, achieving quality assurance accreditation and setting specific financial targets.

Architects’ average earnings increased by 6% to £28 500 in the year to 1999, the highest rise for 10 years, according to the latest Architects’ Employment and Earnings Survey.

Young architects did best with those under 30 seeing their earnings rise by 13% in the past year.