- Three groups representing landscape architects, educators of landscape architects and the regulatory boards for the profession have jointly announced a formal partnership to improve and expand licensure laws for landscape architects. The "Partnership for the Advancement of Licensure" (PAL) has begun working on a vision for the future of landscape architectural licensure as well as identifying the joint activities and products required to implement this vision. Products and activities will be directly related to PAL's stated mission of effecting a healthier built and natural environment, increasing competition and creating a stronger profession.
The presidents of the American Society of Landscape Architects (ASLA), the Council of Landscape Architectural Registration Boards (CLARB) and the Council of Educators in Landscape Architecture (CELA) indicate that the purpose of the collaborative effort is to draw on the varied resources of each organization to optimize the effectiveness of current and future licensure efforts.
"This is an incredible effort that demonstrates how critically important licensure is for all of our organizations," says ASLA President Rodney Swink. "While we all have slightly different missions and responsibilities related to licensure, there is no question that everyone benefits from stronger licensure laws in all jurisdictions. We can be much more successful in achieving our own goals in the licensure arena if we effectively pool the resources of all three organizations."
CLARB President John Carman agrees. "In the past, our organizations have had programs to communicate the value of licensure to the profession and the public, but we lacked a way of coordinating our efforts. There are many opportunities for collaborative action on licensure efforts, and this partnership gives us the structure and ground rules that allow us to work effectively together while maintaining autonomy and recognizing the different constituencies of each organization."
Karen Hanna, CELA President, explains why her organization is an important member of the partnership. "Everyone knows that education is a critical part of the licensure process, but licensure is also a critical part of education," she says. "The visibility, prestige and funding of our programs are all significantly enhanced by the fact that landscape architecture is a licensed profession. It is in the interest of all educators to be a part of the discussions and actions to strengthen licensure."
The partnership has already had a significant impact on how the organizations work together. Previously independent projects including a Licensure Support Resource Guide and a National Licensure Summit have already been converted to the partnership concept. The resource guide will contain factual information and background material that demonstrate the value of landscape architectural licensure to the public and the profession. It will be published by the end of this month. The summit will bring together leaders from local components of the three organizations to discuss strategies for improving the status of licensure, beginning grassroots licensure upgrade and maintenance programs and establishing partnerships at the local level. The summit is scheduled for early November. Updates on the activities of the partnership will be posted on the web sites of the three organizations. Articles will be published in ASLA's LAND Online, Landscape Architecture Magazine, CLARB's Environment and Design Newsletter and CELA's Forum on Education Newsletter.
About The American Society of Landscape Architects
Founded in 1899, the American Society of Landscape Architects is the national professional association representing landscape architects. From 11 original members, ASLA has grown to more than 13,500 members and 48 chapters, in all 50 states, the U.S. territories and 42 countries around the world. ASLA promotes the landscape architecture profession and advances the practice through advocacy, education, communication and networking. For more information, visit
on the Internet.
About The Council of Landscape Architectural Registration Boards
About The Council of Educators in Landscape Architecture
CLARB is a non-profit, international association whose members are the 46 states and two Canadian provinces that license landscape architects. CLARB's mission is to foster the public health, safety and welfare related to the use and protection of the natural and built environment affected by the practice of landscape architecture. For more information visit
CELA was created for the purpose of advancing teaching in the professional field of landscape architecture. The Council is composed of over 80 full and associate member schools that offer accredited degree programs in landscape architecture. In the U.S. and Canada, this represents nearly 750 educators and approximately 5,000 undergraduate and graduate students. CELA created and continues to financially support Landscape Journal, the refereed journal of the profession. For more information visit