Survey: Equity in Architecture

Equity by Design Survey

Average salary by years of experience, according to the 2014 Equity in Architecture Survey. Image courtesy of Equity by Design.

Rosa Sheng, AIA, LEED AP BD+C

Senior Associate at Bohlin Cywinski Jackson

In the United States, women represent 43 percent of students enrolled in accredited architecture programs, but only 25 percent of licensed architects, according to the Association of Collegiate Schools of Architecture. Place this disparity alongside the widely distributed Denise Scott Brown Pritzker Prize petition, the Australian Institute of Architects’ recently approved Gender Equity Policy, and continuing attrition of women architects, and you get the perfect storm: a climate restless for discussion about women’s equitable representation and participation in the future of architectural practice.

How You Can Help

Last week, AIA San Francisco and the Equity by Design Committee launched the 2016 Equity in Architecture Survey.

Equity by Design is a call to action for both women and men to realize the goal of equitable practice, advance architecture, sustain the profession, and communicate the value of design to society. Our mission is to understand the pinch points and promote the strategic execution of best practices in the recruitment, retention, and promotion of our profession's best talent at every level of architectural practice.

Inspired by the 2014 research study, The Missing 32% Project, this survey aims to explore career equity between men and women, as well as underrepresented racial and ethnic groups. Our goal is to attain responses from 3,000 to 5,000 people who have graduated from architecture schools and are currently residing in the United States.

The survey should take between 20-25 minutes to complete and will close April 1, 2016. NCARB customers and volunteers will recieve an email with a direct link on March 11.

We are very excited about this year's collaboration and support from NCARB to reach a larger group of survey participants. Equitable practice is something that affects everyone in the profession. The data collected will provide a better understanding of the career pinch points and intersections that impact talent retention.

“This survey will provide us with insightful baselines to better understand and support our members along their career path,” says AIASF President Aaron Hyland, AIA. “Our chapter has always been at the forefront of supporting emerging professionals, building bridges between academia and the profession, and now we will be able to leverage that support along the entire career path trajectory.”

We plan to share key findings at Equity by Design Symposium on October 29, 2016 at the San Francisco Art Institute followed by a Final Report in early 2017.

For questions about survey outreach, please contact:

For questions about the survey, please contact our research partner: Kendall Nicholson at  

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