More female architects in America

It's been over 20 years since American women reached near parity in university architecture programmes. But only now are female architects populating the professional ranks in greater numbers and taking on leadership roles at firms, according to new statistics.

  • The percentage of licensed architects who are women grew to 19.9 percent in 2002 from 13.7 percent in 1999, according to an American Institute of Architects study.

  • Those who are partners or principals of firms rose to 20.7 percent last year from 11.2 percent in 1999.

    What can a woman offer that a man can't? Many women say they bring a sensibility to the design world that better reflects the needs of clients and occupants.

  • Women avoid the gender-insensitive layouts they live with everyday, such as kitchen cabinets being too high.

  • They also are in tune with users and understand that their comfort is of utmost importance.

    However, getting into the professional world, for men or for women, is still no small task. Architecture graduates, more often than not, end up in city-planning, academia or in consulting positions because it is a struggle to even make it through their three-year post-graduate internships, which offer low pay, long hours and are ruthlessly competitive.

    Source: Alex Frangos, More Women Design Their Way to the Top: Female Architects Take On Firm Leadership, Big Projects, Wall Street Journal, November 5, 2003.

    For text (WSJ subscription required),,SB106799319035388800-search,00.html

    For more on Affirmative Action and Gender Issues

    FMF Policy Bulletin\18 November 2003
  • Help FMF promote the rule of law, personal liberty, and economic freedom become an individual member / donor HERE ... become a corporate member / donor HERE