About us

Our vision is a Scotland whose places are healthy, sustainable and thriving, where everyone works together to shape their future.

A young girl in a hijab presenting her work in a workshop to a group of people. A red canopy in the park is presented on the screen behind her.
a group of young children play underneath a multi coloured inflatable object.

The role that we play

Architecture and Design Scotland hopes to inspire and support all those involved in designing and shaping our places. By fostering a culture of collaboration we will improve the lives of people, support inclusive and sustainable economic growth and create a more successful Scotland. The future is one we need to be prepared for, and future-proofing our places, as best as we can, will make them better for everyone.

Image credit: Brian Hartley

Learn more

About Architecture and Design Scotland

We were set up in 2005 by the Scottish Government as an executive Non-Departmental Public Body (NDPB). We provide leadership on the Place Principle to help change how Scotland’s places are planned, designed, delivered and sustained.

We work with our partners to demonstrate what a joined-up approach looks like and the benefits it brings. We use our experience and professional skills to inspire and support all those involved in creating, adapting and sustaining Scotland’s places.

Above all we bring people together to create better places for everyone by making the Place Principle an everyday reality.

Learn about Architecture and Design Scotland in this 2 minute video

A short video to introduce Architecture and Design Scotland. Video by David P Scott
A woman draws a line on a whiteboard during a Place Standard workshop for St Andrews Drive, Glasgow.

Our plans and strategies

Discover how we plan to transform the way Scotland’s places are created, adapted and sustained in our Corporate Plan 2021-24. And read about our ambitions for the decade in our Corporate Strategy 2021-31.

Image credit: GoWell

Read our strategy

Our values

  • Generous: we are generous with our time, ideas and experience

  • Open: we are open and approachable

  • Accountable: we keep the promises that we make and do our work with integrity

  • Inquisitive: we are curious and seek creative solutions

  • Supportive: we support people and organisations to be their best

A group photograph of A&DS members of staff at the What If...?/Scotland exhibition at V&A Dundee
Our staff visit the What if...?/Scotland exhibition

Our people

People make places. And all the people at Architecture and Design Scotland know that. Our team draws experience and insights from a range of backgrounds and professions. We all believe passionately in the ability of good design to transform places. That is what unites us. We are here to enhance lives and make communities better, by adhering to the philosophy of the Place Principle.

Find out more about our board, our team and our volunteer panel of experts.

Image credit: Architecture and Design Scotland

Meet our people
A woman giving a talk to an audience. The audience is sitting on large round tables.

How we can help you

Collaboration is everything. We work together with community groups, architects, local authorities and all the key stakeholders to ensure the places we make are the best they can be.

Image credit: Alan Devlin, Crichton Trust

Read more

A place for inspiration

The partners behind the Place Standard tool have developed a site devoted to promoting the benefits of place and place-based working. Learn more on the Our Place website.

Header image credit: Miss Lydia Photography

Resource: Corporate Strategy 2021-31

Read about the importance of place, our aim for the coming decade, and how we believe our work will lead to change.