With the aim to recognise the role of architecture in shaping Slovenian national identity and to promote the values of architectural culture, the Plečnik Award is the highest honour presented for achievements in the field of architecture in Slovenia. It was launched in 1972 to commemorate the centenary of Slovenia’s most acclaimed architect Jože Plečnik (1872–1957). The Plečnik Fund was established the following year. It manages the award process and issues the annual competition call for the award.
The Plečnik Award is presented each year to a superbly completed work by a Slovenian architect over the past five years in the fields of architecture, urbanism, landscape architecture or interior design. The winner is selected by a jury consisting of members of the profession and representatives of the Municipality of Ljubljana and the Republic of Slovenia.
Alongside the main award, a secondary award, the Plečnik Medal, honours excellence in the fields of architectural theory, criticism and publication, or significant contributions to architectural culture and/or the promotion thereof.
A student award is also presented for outstanding achievements by students of architecture.
Since 2007, the day on which the presentation of the Plečnik Award falls has been designated as National Architecture Day. The occasion is marked by the opening of an exhibition of award winners at the Dessa Architectural Gallery and a reception for architects at the Ljubljana Castle hosted by the mayor of Ljubljana.
Since 2007, the Plečnik Fund has also published a catalogue of awarded and nominated works.