The Society of Architectural Historians (SAH) promotes the study, interpretation, and conservation of architecture, design, landscapes, and urbanism worldwide for the benefit of all. SAH serves a network of local, national, and international institutions and individuals who, by vocation or avocation, focus on the built environment and its role in shaping contemporary life.
As the world’s built environment rapidly changes, SAH provides leadership to ensure that knowledge and understanding about architecture, landscapes and planning form the foundation for both assessing new design solutions and conserving the world’s cultural heritage. SAH aims to equip the public to think critically about the central role that architecture, design, landscapes, and urbanism play in the quality of everyday life.
Founded at Harvard University in 1940, SAH has a distinguished history of providing services for teaching and design professionals and institutions that educate the public about the history of the built environment. In addition, SAH has always welcomed individuals of every profession who simply enjoy learning about the history of architecture, landscapes and urbanism.
Currently SAH has more than 2500 individual members and nearly 800 institutional members in more than 56 countries. For much of its history, the Society’s services revolved around four core activities, namely publishing the quarterly print Journal of the Society of Architectural Historians, hosting the SAH annual conference, organizing study tours, and starting in the 1990s, publishing the Buildings of the United States publication series.
In addition to those core services, in recent years SAH has developed several innovative online archives designed to disseminate research about the built environment more widely. Those archives include JSAH from 1941 to the present; the multimedia edition of JSAH from 2010 to the present, one of the first scholarly journals to illustrate articles with video, Google-Earth maps, and computer-generated models; SAHARA, a shared online archive of images for teaching and research; and SAH Archipedia, a media rich online encyclopedia of American architecture.
Although the Society continues to embrace print and digital communications, it also promotes experiential learning by organizing a wide variety of study tours, seminars and programs both in its landmark headquarters Charnley-Persky House and around the world.