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Press for Progress: International Women’s Day

Today marks International Women’s Day, a day that calls to action the annual campaign for gender parity, with the 2018 theme being Press for Progress.

Architecture has long held the belief that design can and should be used to enhance our civic life; historically, the working conditions of the profession and of its women particularly, have not always been treated with the same importance.

While changes are rolling through Architecture and other sectors across our economy, there is more to be done to ensure women and men are treated equally; a fundamental contribution to our communities and civic society.

We recognise our practice has not always been as progressive as the communities we are privileged to design for, or as understanding and accommodating of the needs of our colleagues and friends when it comes to gender parity.

This is changing.

We are committed to creating a workplace that is culturally-driven, adaptable and tailored to facilitating an environment where our staff can do their best. We also recognise there is a long way to go until we reach this goal, and so we have implemented a strategy to meet this challenge. This strategy is based on the idea of involvement and inclusion within both our own studios and the wider architecture and design community in Australia.

To begin, we’ve elevated more strong and intelligent female leaders to our Director and Associate teams. The new cohort contributes not only to our practice, but to our studio culture and perspective, refreshing our diversity through both thought and perspective.

Beyond internal shifts, Cox Architecture are actively contributing to groups that aim to further gender parity in Architecture.

Male Champions of Change is a group that recognises the obvious gap of women in leadership in Australian architecture practices, and is committed to proactively working to address this issue within the industry. This group is made up of twelve men from firms of varying scales, with their first report highlighting the disparities and remedial actions to be taken published online here.

As gold members of NAWIC and Parlour partisans, we host and encourage all staff to be involved in events that highlight and give a voice to women in architecture. These organisations create visibility and awareness of current challenges faced by women in design professions, so that these issues can be addressed and ultimately eradicated for our future colleagues.

In contributing to these organisations, we hope to educate ourselves, peers and clients to Press for Progress, and continue the positive gains made toward parity, day by day.