Today Architectuur Lokaal launched the website TheFulcrum.eu, the first international portal for architecture commissions in all European countries. TheFulcrum.eu offers greater insight into public procurement and competition culture in Europe, thereby contributing to the development of a healthy building culture across the continent. In this way, we and all partners want to put into practice the Davos Declaration 2018, in which the European Ministers of Culture called for the development of a high-quality ‘building culture’ in Europe.
TheFulcrum.eu has been created in close collaboration with A10 new European architecture cooperative (EU), Project Compass (UK) and many partners in various European countries. TheFulcrum.eu is one of the results of the Competition Culture Europe programme, which Architectuur Lokaal 2017-2020 is carrying out with the support of the Creative Industries Fund NL.
Architectuur Lokaal works in a structured way to improve the culture of public procurement for architectural services in the Netherlands through, among others, the Steunpunt Architectuuropdrachten en Ontwerpwedstrijden (Fulcrum / Support Centre for Architecture Commissions and Design Competitions). International collaboration is increasingly natural in this profession, certainly for younger architects. But although the same Public Procurement Law applies in all EU member states, each member state has its own national building culture and traditions. In combination with national laws and regulations, that makes it difficult to understand one another properly. To address this situation, Architectuur Lokaal initiated the Competition Culture Europe programme in collaboration with architects and architecture critics affiliated with A10 new European architecture cooperative and with the British partner Project Compass CIC. International gatherings have already taken place in Amsterdam (NL), Venice (IT), Chęciny (PL) and Vilnius (LT).
Access to public procurement markets and architectural competitions is not equal across all European countries, irrespective of whether or not they are EU member states. Moreover, many of those involved in architectural commissions (contracts for architectural services, full architecture commissions, architectural competitions, development competitions) are unaware, or insufficiently aware, of public procurement regulations in both the European Union and individual member states.
TheFulcrum.eu takes the form of a homepage. The European legislation can be consulted in the operating language of each country. The national flag links to the public procurement legislation of the country in question. Public procurement and competition portals for each country can be consulted, as can publications, architecture networks and public and private organizations involved in public procurement and competitions in that country. Never before has all this information about each country been compiled, presented and made fully accessible.
The portal will continue to develop over time. Additions and feedback are welcome. TheFulcrum.eu is available to everybody free of charge.