The Ghana institute of architects (GIA) is a professional association of Architects. It is like the Ghana Bar Association or the Ghana Medical Association. The se are associations or clubs of similar professionals with their own constitutions , byelaws and regulations. they are self- funding , elect their own officers and run their affairs and secretariats. They can be pressure groups and strictly speaking independent of Government.
The Architects Registration council (ARC) on the other hand, is a public service organisation set up by the government of Ghana under the Architects Act 1969, NLCD 357 to keep a register of architects and regulate architectural practice in the country. It is mandatory for anyone practicing architecture in Ghana to obtain license from the ARC