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The Bichard RICS Review

Lord Michael Bichard has published his independent Bichard RICS Review which was commissioned by the RICS Governing Council to review the Institution’s purpose, governance and strategy.  

The RICS Governing Council has strongly endorsed the report and recommendations which aim to hand decision-making to members and ensure the Institution’s activities are centred on the public advantage. Work will now begin on the practical implementation of the recommendations, with five new working groups being established to take them forward.  A summary of recommendations can be found on page 64 of the report.

Latest Updates

November 2022

Thanks to months of hard work and collaboration between RICS members and staff, the critical components of phase one recommendations from the Bichard RICS Review have now been delivered. Eight out of the 36 recommendations have been completed since June 2022 and a significant amount of work is already in progress on the remaining recommendations, as we focus on delivering a truly member-led institution.

This roadmap sets out upcoming key Bichard RICS Review implementation milestones in the coming 12-13 months – in line with Governing Council’s commitment to deliver widespread institutional reform.

Some items, such as a new Regulatory Framework (recommendation 8), have been delivered by the Governing Council ahead of schedule. Please check the Bichard RICS Review Hub in the coming weeks for more information on how this captures the responsibilities of the Standards and Regulation Board (SRB), now reporting directly to Council. The Framework strengthens SRB’s autonomy and underlines RICS and its members’ commitment to acting in the public interest through independent-led regulation.

Frequently Asked Questions

  • The Bichard RICS Review was commissioned by the Governing Council in December 2021, following a recommendation in the Levitt Review that a “wide-ranging examination of purpose, governance and strategy” should be conducted by an external reviewer, replacing ‘Defining our Future’, the internally led strategic review launched by the previous leadership in March 2021.

    Lord Bichard, a former Whitehall Permanent Secretary with a long and varied career in public service, was appointed to lead the Review after an open recruitment process.

  • Lord Bichard issued a call for evidence, receiving 564 submissions, and held a series of meetings and roundtable discussions with hundreds of members, employees, non-executives and stakeholders from the UK and internationally. He also drew on responses to previous reviews, including Defining our Future.

  • The Review aimed to clarify the purpose of RICS, make proposals on its governing structure, and make proposals for the incoming leadership and governing body on the future culture and strategy of the Institution. A full copy of the terms of reference can be found here.

  • RICS Governing Council strongly endorses the report and recommendations, which were informed by a global stakeholder consultation process, and will now commence work on the practical implementation. Five working groups will be established to progress the recommendations.

  • Lord Bichard makes 36 recommendations and suggests a phased timetable for implementation.

    The report’s recommendations include:

    • A renewed and increased focus on the public interest remit of RICS, including amending the Royal Charter and creating a public interest panel to advise Governing Council
    • Maintaining self-regulation, through greater independence for regulatory functions
    • Increased focus on Diversity and Inclusion across the profession and within RICS governance
    • Empowering and enabling members through greater support for regional boards, alongside increased member engagement, with renewed focus on younger members
    • Undertaking an independent review of RICS’ governance and effectiveness at delivering against its Charter for the public advantage once every five years
    • A new simplified, clear, accountable governance structure
    • Showing greater leadership on the issues that matter most to society, such as sustainability and climate change
  • Lord Bichard recommends the reforms are implemented quickly and in three phases.

    • Phase one would focus on transitioning the Chair of Governing Council’s responsibilities to the President; recruiting a new Chair of the Board, a permanent leader for the Executive and a Chair of the combined Nominations and Recruitment Committee. There would be a consultation over changes to professional groups and a framework document for SRB.
    • Phase two would focus on creating the new RICS Board; recruiting a Senior Independent Governor and independent member and appointing Board members; and conducting elections for geographic Governing Council seats in early 2023.
    • Phase three would focus on the establishment and population of the five key Committees; the new Professional Group Panels; and World Regional Boards. Elections for the new disciplinary Governing Council seats.

The Bichard RICS Review

Lord Bichard launched his report at an event which was livestreamed from RICS' Great George Street office.

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