Dezeen Magazine

Architects work too hard

Architecture ranks fifth in list of jobs most linked to suicide

A US study has listed architects among the people most likely to take their own life.

The research carried out by America's Centers for Disease Control and Prevention revealed that those who work in architecture and engineering are the fifth most likely to commit suicide, compared to those in other jobs.

Published last week, the data was gathered from 17 US states in 2012. Occupational codes were applied to 12,312 suicide cases from the National Violent Death Reporting System.

Rates for each profession were calculated by the number of suicides per 100,000 population. For architecture and engineering, the rate was 32.2.

Farming, fishing, and forestry came top of the list, rating 84.5. Other job sectors ranked above architecture were construction and extraction; installation, maintenance and repair; and production.

The group that encompassed arts, design, entertainment, sports and media was seventh, with a rate of 24.3.

The lowest rate of suicide, 7.5, was found in the education, training and library occupational group.

Approximately 40,000 suicides were reported in the United States during 2012 – the 10th leading cause of death among people aged 16 and over.

"Understanding suicides by occupational group provides an opportunity for prevention, but such data have not been reported recently for a broad population or examined by sex and occupation classification," said the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

The report acknowledges that the findings are subject to limitations, such as human and computer errors in categorisation.

However, the researchers hope that forthcoming data, gathered in 2014 from across 32 states, might provide more representative findings and allow them to examine occupational trends over time.