This paper will consider the implications of the growth of project management as a separate professional skill for the future of the architectural profession in Britain. It will refer to the transformation of the organisation of typical building design and construction projects which has taken place since the late 1960s and speculate on the possibility of further changes in the near future. The ways in which these changes nay have been related to the problems of the British economy, to the criticisms of professionalism and to the reorientation of cultural values experienced during this period will also be considered. The argument of the paper will be that architects were unprepared for rapid changes in the level of demand for building services, that they were insufficiently skilled in the identification of newly emerging user requirements and that they found it hard to cope with a new fluidity in aesthetic expectations. The paper will suggest that in these circumstances a new sub-profession, project management, was first allowed to emerge, then welcomed and then feared. Project managers seem to have appeared to be no more than specialists within the quantity surveying profession, then useful bearers of responsibilities architects were loathe to carry, then competitors for one of the architects' prized professional duties. In periods of economic expansion buildings were created more quickly and with more innovative technology than had ever been known in the past. Criticisms of poor performance were perhaps inevitable. Owners and users, but also designers, were pleased to be offered a chance to pass some of the responsibility for risk-taking to others. In periods of recession, all professions have sought to diversify their skills, in the case of project managers by invading more completely the areas of architectural briefing and of construction site control previously the province of the architect. The design professions have not been able to sustain their view that overall control of a building process should be entrusted to only one profession. Indeed they may have lost the argument that this function of control is a single function which must be followed through into the details of a project if the highest levels of quality are to be maintained. Accountability for quality may have many facets and be achieved by numerous routes. The paper will attempt to chart the steps by which this transformation of attitudes towards the building task has been achieved in Britain in the last twenty years. It will invite discussion on the benefits which may have arisen as well as on the losses which have been incurred.