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Brexit Result Leaves U.K. Architects and Designers Uncertain of Future

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A big worry is the free flow of talent across Europe

Some shocking news came overnight from across the pond: the British people have voted to leave the European Union in a referendum that has ignited fierce divisions in U.K. politics in recent months.

While the scale of change and the full ramifications of the vote will take some time to shake out (simply negotiating the terms of withdrawal will take place over the next two years), the decision already has many people and industries concerned for their future—the design world included.

Since the results were released, London-based digital design magazine Dezeen has compiled an extensive list of reactions from U.K.-based architects and designers. According to Dezeen, members of the industry they interviewed in the days leading up to the vote were in the "remain" camp. So there is a lot of disappointment going around today.

Their main concerns? Brexit’s toll on talent exchange, and, for independent designers, keeping businesses stabilized. Below, a few select quotes from their statements. Do check out the full list over on Dezeen. And for a detailed breakdown of how Brexit might affect U.K.'s design industry once the negotiations are complete, check out this briefing from the Royal Institute of British Architects.

Today a Design Academy Eindhoven education for British students has shifted from costing €1,984 a year to €8,575 for a Bachelors degree or €14,554 for a Masters degree (non EU rates). — Ilse Crawford, designer

I think it's going to be very difficult for the design industry as a whole because we rely on confidence, and confidence is going to be at rock bottom. If the property market is affected, surely furniture doesn't sell as well. — Sebastian Cox, designer

This result is not only significant for our practice but especially for the important proportion of our staff for whom this is not only a signal of a new, less open Britain but one that may lead to real and practical changes in their lives. —Rogers Stirk Harbour + Partners, architecture firm