Competition is integral to the architecture industry and has been for years; it forces individuals to push the boundaries of their creativity and has resulted in some incredibly significant projects being created. Buildner offers a platform for enthusiastic architecture startups, students, general enthusiasts and even experienced professionals to express their creative potential.

Here are some of the many reasons why competitions are such a useful and popular exercise within the field, and how entering competitions can be more than just a way to win some extra money (although there is that element too).

Exercise Your Creativity / Freedom

It can be easy to focus solely on projects that pay a commission, especially if architecture is your means of earning a living. However if we were in it purely for the money, then many of us would have chosen a different profession. If architecture is something you are passionate about, then architecture competitions are a chance to explore that passion in news ways and without the limits and constraints of a client or a supervisor. The freeness of a competition should be a welcomed breath of fresh air in the sense that you are truly designing for yourself.

Red Square Tolerance Pavilion architecture competition entries were judged on their ability to conceptually deconstruct ideas for tolerance, remembering those who were victims of fanaticism and representing those who firmly defend and believe in a future without violence against any minority.

The Competition is its own reward

If you don’t manage to win the architecture competition you enter, does that mean that you’ve wasted your time? Or is there still a reward even when there isn’t a financial one? Architecture competitions usually have strict submission deadlines and time limits can be short, forcing you to work quickly and decisively as well as creatively. This is no mean feat and a skill that experienced architects will tell you is invaluable throughout your career.

Having said that, architecture competitions do have financial rewards for those that win; so while the competition is it’s own reward, it doesn’t have to be the only reward. Buildner architecture vision competition prizes vary all the way from $5 to $10,000 US; offering some of the largest prize funds for the lowest registration fees.

Practice new skills

Whether you’re a seasoned architecture professional, an architecture student or simply an architecture enthusiast, there will always be news skills to hone and new technology to implement. An architecture competition is the perfect opportunity to put these new skills into practice without sacrificing a commission or a final grade.

All winning entries are provided with in-depth jury comments, offering what the panel feels to be strengths and weaknesses of the project and to encourage future growth and development.

Getting your designs noticed

A good architecture competition will have hundreds, maybe even thousands, of participants, and a huge part of taking part in one is getting your designs noticed by the jury to get to the next round. Just as you would in any professional presentation. Experienced architects may have the edge in this department and those still developing their skills are given a chance to strengthen their graphics so as to catch the jury’s attention.

Some of Buildner current and former collaborators are (from left) SAMARTH+UKaid / Nepal Mountaineering Association / Liepaja City Council / Kurzemes Business Incubator / European Regional Development Fund 

Free from Reality

Many architecture competitions are conceptual, and the winning designs are never actually constructed. But remember, reality is overrated and you have the rest of your careers to focus real life projects with all their real life problems, these competitions are a chance to focus entirely on what you love about architecture; they are about the idea, and it is so crucial not to lose sight of the importance of the architectural idea.

That being said, strong and successful ideas can be developed into something tangible at a later stage. Many widely recognised projects began their life in conceptual competitions and later became real life projects.

Bangkok: I am Fashion Hub - architecture competition. Final registration deadline February 25, 2015 

Build Your Portfolio

Novice architects and architecture students are often focused on building their portfolio, and architecture competitions are a great way to get experience without experience. Competitions are also a chance for even seasoned architects to build their portfolio, working on designs and projects that they’ve either not had the opportunity or the skills to before, It’s a chance to investigate an area where you haven’t before, something that’s interesting to you and build your portfolio at the same time.

Get International Recognition

Many architects cite particular architecture competition victories as having been instrumental in elevating their respective firms in marketplace visibility or even been the turning point for their entire careers.

Buildner is an internationally recognised architecture competition organiser with an excellent jury panel which consists of professionals from the world’s best architecture offices, universities and industry partners.

Buildner offers extensive media coverage for the winners. Our media partners include some of the world’s most-visited design blogs and websites. Winners are featured on a variety of industry-related media, online and in print. 

Winners and honourable mentions are interviewed. These interviews are published on the website as well as through Buildner social media platforms. Competitions are open to all regardless of geographical position or level of education. 

Are Architecture Competitions Right for you?

Still unsure if participating in architecture competitions is right for you? Read some of the interviews with our previous winners and runners up to see their motivations for taking part, as well as some of the benefits they’ve taken away from the competitions.

see what competitions can you join today!


Top 3 Reasons Why You Should Enter Architecture Competitions

Curious about the value of architecture competitions? Discover the transformative power they can have on your career - from igniting creativity and turning designs into reality, to gaining international recognition.

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