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Professional Practice
 
Providing offshore architectural services
There is a debate going on in the practice in the US and other first world countries: should architectural services in these markets be outsourced to countries like India, China, etc? What is the Indian professional's opinion on doing the offshore work? How many firms in India are doing offshore work, as well as what type of services are they providing?
Meenakshi Karuppiah
Responses
 
Providing offshore architectural services
This is million dollar question...
What is your profession..?
Actually offshoring is very recent phenomenon in India...Some USA firm have started this process in Delhi and gurgaon...

But more than this , I cannot share..
Ajze Jones
Providing offshore architectural services
I am specifically talking about the outsourcing in Architectural Profession. I just want to have the general opinion from members, who are fellow practising architects.
Meenakshi Karuppiah
Providing offshore architectural services
I feel there is no such debate any more because offshoring arch. services to countires such as India ever since the country has liberalized has become a wide spread phenomenon.

There are plenty of firms in India having good repute, which only transcribe information or provide the 'drafting' services to bigger multinationals abroad. It is a pathetic state of affairs as actual designing of large scale projects in India barely takes place in the country!
A strong enterprising spirit and financila might i the only way to couteract such a situation.
I dont want to undermine the status of the firms in India as many do remarkable work in here, but in the crowd there seems to be a lot of fake faces as well.
As far as services are concerned- they vary from drafiting, collaborations, translations according to Indian ground condition etc.
Abhay R. Ambati
Providing offshore architectural services
Thanks Abhay for your response! May I ask if you are a practising architect in India?
Meenakshi Karuppiah
Providing offshore architectural services
What is the meaning of OUTSOURCING in our global village of today?
Ivan Sutila
Providing offshore architectural services
Though I agree with the idea that the world is a global village, largely our borders still remain. Especially in this field. So a person in one country working on a project based in another country is doing out-sourcing work.

my firm is getting in doing construction documents for architectural firms based in the US. I find that there are a score of people doing this already here in India. But for a country like US, which is so litigation-driven, probably confidentiality and security is of the highest priority.
Meenakshi Karuppiah
Providing offshore architectural services
I think the idea of confidentiality and security will be a priority for both the firms which outsource (part of) their works and also for those who receive such works in lower-wage countries or regions.

However, in terms of litigation issues, such a practice cannot perhaps protect local architectural establishments from encroaching inter-sector competition. Hence your statement, "I find that there are a score of people doing this already here in India," makes sense.

There could be a particular reason also for this. The defining characteristic of the participants in such distant collaboration projects is an explicit commercial or 'market' focus. Far removed from the old ideal of the architect as an autonomous design professional working in his/her own office with a "creative" set-up of work-force, members of this new trans-regional group dealing with virtual transfer of service, may not have common formal or ideological commitments. Moreover, the nature of the service is such that it needs no validation from the institute of architects, and hence it may be argued that there is little regard for the formal institutional frameworks and protocols of the architectural profession as such.

Further, the osmotic potential of such a practice cannot be ignored.

The question then is, can we control what kind of work enters a particular region? Can the work be defined in a manner and then categorised into what kind of work is worthy enough to be done in the first place? In short, can we choose the foreign firms outsourcing such jobs or does it always have to be the other way round? Finally, for all this to happen, will bodies like IIA and CoA and architectural profession as such accept this phenomenon?
Shaji Panicker
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