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Newspaper Question: Should Brazil Have the Landscape Architecture as an Autonomous professional field *** YES: The Landscapes

we want
By Eliana Azevedo (Vice-president of the National Landscape Association) Cecilia Herzog (President of the Urban Ecology Society) Julio Pastore (Agronomist, Post graduated in Landscape Architecture) The importance of Landscape Architecture has grown, together with the challenges that inappropriate and intensive use of finite natural resources have caused. The draft Bill No. 2.043/11 on Landscape Architecture Regulation is currently being read in the Brazilian Parliament and awarding approval. The Bill aims to enable landscape Architects to practice their profession without restrictions in Brazil and also to promote under-graduate courses in this field. This independent profession is recognized by the International Labour Organization (ILO) and its autonomy was reaffirmed by the International Federation of Landscape Architects (IFLA) and the International Union of Architects (UIA). Germany, Canada , France , Portugal , United States , Australia, China , Mexico and South Africa have regulated professional practice and have specific under-graduate training in this field. In Brazil, however, the profession is not regulated. This fact leaves us perplexed when we look at the state of our cities: lacking in trees and greenery, increasingly hot, suffering frequent flooding, landslides and poor air quality. These are some of the consequences of a development model which has ignored for years environment and landscape. Profits are made by shortchanging the citys public realm and budgets: the people bear the true costs of development. Urban, public or private green areas, gardens, squares, parks and natural parks, valleys - all of them are strategic to the quality of life and of the environment. The history of Landscape Architecture in Brazil has produced figures of relevance coming from various fields - architecture, agronomy, engineering and biology. Burle Marx - our main reference in this area - was an artist. We have only one under-graduate level degree in Landscape Architecture in Brazil, at the Federal University of Rio de Janeiro (UFRJ). The qualification in this area is fully accredited and recognized by the Ministry of Education.

One degree is too little and the scarcity of demand occurs because landscape architects emerging from this course are systematically accused of illegal practice by the professional bodies representing architects and agronomists (CAU and Confea). Both are opposed to the draft bill, and both use the same argument: Landscape Architecture is just a field of activity which should be reserved to architects and agronomical and forestry engineers on the other. It should be noted that the draft bill 2043/2011 respects other professionals right to work in the field of Landscape Architecture, and encourages MBA and graduate courses for those who already have diplomas in related fields. Landscape Architecture in Brazil is effectively split across different professional fields. None of them, however, covers all the knowledge that L.A. comprehends and does not have more than 8 % of its core teaching dedicated to the specific contents of this area. A landscape architect, when qualified in a specific under-graduated course, receives different forms of knowledge: from natural sciences (botany, soil science, climatology, environment), technical (construction project) and artistic . We feel that it is necessary to recognize the autonomy and interdisciplinary value of this field of knowledge to guarantee the expansion and establishment of a broad academic body. The creation of under-graduate and postgraduate programs dedicated to Landscape Architecture is the most efficient way to strengthen its technical and theoretical knowledge. The Bill PL 2043/2011 ultimate goal is to produce fully licensed landscape architects in Brazil. Otherwise, our society will harmed, as it will not be able to rely on professionals qualified in a area of fundamental importance to ensure a future where we enjoy healthier cities . Only last week, the Education Committee of the Brazilian Parliament approved unanimously the draft bill 2.043/2011. The Brazilian society must be informed and asked to take a stake on this matter. Otherwise, we risk having our common interests subjugated by other, less representative ones. Brazil needs to regulate the profession of landscape architect. ***

NO: A Generalist Professional

By Jose Armenio de Brito Cruz (President of the Brazilian Architects Institute (IAB)

Landscape design demands a holistic and generalist approach which comes naturally to the architect. He who thinks the landscape professionally should consider all of its composing parts, both natural and anthropogenic, as well as the cultural and artistic ones. The only school that ensures this kind of training is the "Architecture and Urbanism" school. Brazil has nowadays 311 of them, forming professionals in various specialties, including landscape architecture. The L.A. profession is, therefore, already regulated. There is no need to create yet another specialty. In addition to this academic discussion, with arguments often coated by shades of market

protection, it is necessary to consider the demand of our country at this moment and what is happening in the research, science and art fields throughout the world. Knowledge is not a shelf with unopened packages of diverse specialties. Integration is the right perspective. When I was involved in a project which theme was sustainability, I had the opportunity through an international research - to be in contact with world's most advanced research centers. There was a laboratory in England that caught my attention in which oceanography scientists shared the workbench with electronic engineers and biologists. They were studying the influence of tides on marine life through a monitoring conducted by electronic circuits. Interdisciplinarity is therefore the basis for their work. Landscape has this aggregating characteristic. The challenge in the planning and construction of the national territory is precisely the integration of disciplines. Personal vocations, as well as the directions for the academic qualification and professional practice, all find space within the school of architecture, which ensures the overall training including individual right choices. Instead of discussing a bill (Bill No. 2043/2011) that directs resources to a specialty which is plain wrong at inception, we should discuss ways to ensure that the resources invested in architecture schools, which have been so profitable for so many architects -including landscape architects result in a bigger return to our country. The Brazilian territory is unaware of any sort of planning, and the creation of a landscape expert will not ensure a necessary change in this scenario. We should not prevent the positive pollution of public administration thought and in private decision making affecting the territory with of what is considered universal thought. In a landscape architecture project, the knowledge of transport, urban planning and infrastructure is as important as biology - the flora, fauna and climate. It is the integration of a fields under one discipline that ensures the quality of the project, not specialization. In 2012 the Board of Architecture and Urbanism (CAU) - the entity that regulates and supervises the profession of architect- began operating. CAUs resolution number 51 from July 2013, which governs the areas of of architects and urban planners professional practice, puts landscape architecture within the scope of their professional activities. The creation of the board is based on the definition of the "architect-town planner" as a uniprofissional category of general qualification with its activities, tasks and areas of expertise detailed in art. 2 of Law No. 12,378 of December 31, 2010 and ensures the globalizing sense of architectural qualification. We should be really discussing how we can bring architectural education to meet the needs of our country, by means of specialized qualifications designed to meet the population' demands. The improvement of quality of life in our cities will only be achieved through the application of a peculiar form of knowledge - architecture in all ways imaginable. *** Original Versions:

Folha de So Paulo Newspaper. November, 30, 2013