The Landscape Profession
What is Landscape Architecture?
Landscape architecture is about creating and conserving memorable places for people to live and work in. It embraces all scales in both town and country, from individual streets to national parks. It requires a flair for creativity, an ability to fuse diverse knowledge to produce imaginative yet workable solutions, and a passion for improving environmental quality and people´s lives.
Landscape Architects are part of a well-established profession with their own chartered institute, The Landscape Institute, which was founded in 1929. The profession has a long history which includes well known figures like Capability Brown, Humphry Repton and Joseph Paxton. Paxton, who worked on the nearby Chatsworth estate, was also responsible for designing Britain´s first public park at Birkenhead in 1846. These pioneers may not have called themselves Landscape Architects but they shared the same enthusiasm for the subject and understood its tremendous potential.
Our courses equip graduates to contribute across the breath of the landscape profession. Though many choose to focus on design, others progress to specialise in landscape ecology, strategic planning and policy, or undertake higher level academic research.
Some landscape architects will focus on local, community-based projects and others work internationally. Projects can range from large-scale urban and countryside planning to small-scale design in parks or city centres.
Demand for graduates is high, and there are opportunities in private sector consultancies, community development agencies, local authorities and national government. Increasingly, there is international recruitment of Landscape Architects, and we have graduates working in many countries, including Australia, US, South East Asia and the Middle East. Sheffield students are keenly sought after by the profession. Practitioners make a point of visiting the end of year degree shows and also write directly to the department advertising their vacancies.
In the past, landscape was often marginalised in development decisions, and many schemes show the problems of giving insufficient attention to outdoor space. But policies and practices are changing, and the importance of outdoor space, and how it contributes to successful places, is increasingly acknowledged. At Sheffield, we believe landscape should be at the centre of creating, regenerating and conserving urban and rural environments. We aim to produce graduates who are confident in working alongside other professions and can ensure that landscape is a prime consideration. Our degrees are based on solving real-world problems that require landscape considerations to be designed into the solutions from the outset.