Most marketing consultants are quick to point out the diminishing returns of entering competitions as a way to get work. Sometimes just getting short-listed will get you publicity, of course, as happened with the Smithsonian African-American Culture and History Museum competition.
But the odds of winning an open competition are rarely worth the effort and time for putting together a first rate entry, although it is fairly easy to rattle off the names of architecture firm that broke out as leading designers that way.
For instance, Snøhetta came together as a firm in 1989 largely as a collaboration of design professionals looking to enter the international competition to design the Alexandria Library in Egypt. They won. And the rest is history, as AIA convention attendees will be able to see when principal Craig Dykers presents at the May 1 Theme Session.
That said, especially if some serious design work would improve morale around the boards in your office, a quick Google search is all it takes to tie into a number of current competition opportunities:
The Architecture Room
Death by Architecture
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