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The Ethics of Architecture | The Architecture of Ethics

April 12, 2022 @ 9:00 am - 10:00 am PDT

$15.00 – $25.00


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The Ethics of Architecture | The Architecture of Ethics (What Every Architect Should be Thinking About)

This is a virtual event. Zoom log-in information will be emailed to registrants 24 hours in advance from events@aialosangeles.org. If you do not receive a confirmation 24 hours prior to the event, please email events@aialosangeles.org.

CES Learning Units: 1 LU

Ethics is a complex issue, in part because we are affected by them alike no matter our culture. It is quite different from morals, which are religious based frameworks often in conflict with those of other doctrines. One generally attributes the term “ethics” to a kind of political or business behavior that relates to anticipated and honorable decisions. Cultures around the world would define this differently. So, what is the common denominator? This course will discuss issues that are common to every culture, to every region, to every political persuasion. These are the contextual factors which inform decisions that create ethical architecture differently in every setting, and when successfully applied create resulting buildings that become the architecture of ethics.

Series Summary:

How do you build a legacy architectural firm from the ground up? One practitioner who had worked for two AIA Gold Medalists and interned in both small and large firms, ultimately set out on his own with a personal vision for a global practice. Enlisting colleagues with collaborative competencies and creating a unique practice molecule, they entered the international arena in only seven years. Architect, author, educator, profession and industry leader, Ronald Altoon, FAIA, LEED AP will suggest paths that may guide you through the maze.

Having founded Altoon + Porter Architects in 1984, he divested after 30-years leaving the firm in solid leadership hands. Through Altoon Strategic he now consults at the C-Suite level to investment and development groups to optimize architects’ services through enhanced communication and understanding. In this four-part series, he will address structuring practice on a solid foundation based on the 1st century Vitruvian model, organizing a project delivery protocol employing a fundamental business school quality assurance model, identifying hidden client landmines to avoid, organizing to take your practice overseas, and understanding that the ethics of architecture are sometimes contextually challenging.

Through these four interactive sessions, punctuated by project examples, you will learn how to focus on the issues that better assure a successful practice outcome. And, in the process, you will learn the benefits of giving back to the profession, education, industry, community, and to civic and cultural organizations in need.

Part 1: Structuring Practice on a Foundation of Leadership
Date: January 11, 2022
Building a Balanced Foundation for Practice

Part 2: 50 Ways to Lose Your Project | 50 Ways to Build It
Date: February 8, 2022
Recognizing real life examples of projects lost may serve you well and enable you to collect well earned fees.

Part 3: Global Vision | Local Roots
Date: March 8, 2022
Small firms with big ideas and strategic thinking can compete globally.

Part 4: The Ethics of Architecture | The Architecture of Ethics
Date: April 12, 2022
What should inform the design process at the crossroads?


Ronald Altoon, FAIA, LEED AP – Altoon Strategic, LLC.
Ronald Altoon, FAIA consults thought-leader to thought-leader with owners of investment and development companies to define and optimize their vision. Through a QBS process and he helps select optimal design teams. And, with enhanced owner/architect communications, he helps eliminate misunderstandings of intent between the players. Altoon served as AIA National President in 1998, having led AIA’s pro bono Armenian Earthquake Urban Design intervention following the 6.8 Richter Spitak event which killed 50,000. He has served in leadership positions as President of AIA | LA, at ULI, in industry, education, not-for-profits, and community organizations, and has authored eight books to date. He holds a Master of Architecture degree from the University of Pennsylvania, and a Bachelor of Architecture from USC.

Learning Objectives:
+ Participants will learn how ethics in architecture go far beyond business practices and effectively inform design concepts and buildings.
+ Ethics embedded in each culture produce challenges that participants will learn to manage and convert into sensitive design expressions and opportunities for growth in different market share.
+ Participants will learn how context may be defined far more holistically and ethically than simply as a description of a physical setting in ways that resonate with ever more sophisticated clients.
+ Case studies, building examples, and precedents illustrating the architecture of ethics will be shared as resources for future design works.


April 12, 2022
9:00 am - 10:00 am PDT
$15.00 – $25.00
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