Declaration of Interdependence for a Sustainable Future



UIA/AIA World Congress of Architects

Chicago, 18-21 June 1993


In recognition that :


  • A sustainable society restores, preserves, and enhances nature and culture for the benefit of all life, present and future; a diverse and healthy environment is intrinsically valuable and essential to a healthy society; today's society is seriously degrading the environment and is not sustainable;
  • We are ecologically interdependent with the whole natural environment; we are socially, culturally, and economically interdependent with all of humanity; sustainability, in the context of this interdependence, requires partnership, equity, and balance among all parties;
  • Buildings and the built environment play a major role in the human impact on the natural environment and on the quality of life; sustainable design integrates consideration of resource and energy efficiency, healthy buildings and materials, ecologically and socially sensitive land-use, and an aesthetic sensitivity that inspires, affirms, and ennobles; sustainable design can significantly reduce adverse human impacts on the natural environment while simultaneously improving quality of life and economic well being;


We commit ourselves,


as members of the world's architectural and building-design professions, individually and through our professional organisations, to:


  • Place environmental and social sustainability at the core of our practices and professional responsibilities
  • Develop and continually improve practices, procedures, products, curricula, services, and standards that will enable the implementation of sustainable design
  • Educate our fellow professionals, the building industry, clients, students, and the general public about the critical importance and substantial opportunities of sustainable design
  • Establish policies, regulations, and practices in government and business that ensure sustainable design becomes normal practice
  • Bring all existing and future elements of the built environment - in their design, production, use, and eventual reuse - up to sustainable design standards.


Olufemi Majekodunmi, President, International Union of Architects

Susan A. Maxman, President, American Institute of Architects