Women in Architecture

This year, BIASS have held a series of lectures, discussions and workshops under the umbrella theme of ‘Women in Architecture’.

Whilst the number of female architecture students has experienced a steady surge in recent years- now a comparable 44%, of RIBA’s 27,000 chartered architects, just 4,000 are women and even fewer are partners or directors in firms. Therefore this series was orientated towards finding answers (if not questions) about the historical, contemporary and political role of women within spatial practice, whilst also raising the status of women in the profession and celebrating their work.

Our guests have included ex-member of the feminist architectural co-operative Matrix, Julia Dwyer; architect and second recipient of the Lina Bo Bardi Fellowship, Laura Smith; and the 2008 Stirling Prize winner Alison Brooks, whose current redevelopment project for Exeter college, Oxford will see her become the first female architect to design an institute for the prestigious university.

Topics have ranged from architecture and domesticity, gendered spaces, overlooked historical female designers within education and potential strategies for a more inclusive design industry. The series has been hugely successful in provoking critical discussion and analysis amongst students, architects and members of staff, whilst also proving an informative glimpse into the world of practice in regards to gender. BIASS would like to thank all those who took part in the series, in shedding light and insight on their experiences and ultimately demonstrating what valuable contributions women bring to architecture and spatial design.