- The National Council of Architectural Registration Boards has recorded an increase in gender diversity of licensure candidates and newly licensed architects for the first time since it began collecting demographic data, according to Architect.
- In 2016, women made up 36% of newly licensed architects versus 34% in 2015, and the NCARB reported that gender equity has increased at every career stage. Non-white participation in the Architectural Experience Program rose by 3%, as did the percentage of non-white people working toward the Architect Registration Examination. However, the percentage of non-white newly licensed architects and NCARB Certificate holders remained unchanged in 2016.
- NCARB noted that the rate of increase in racial and ethnic diversity is slower than that of gender equity but said the small advancements point to future growth.
Gender, racial and ethnic diversity has been of increased concern for the American Institute of Architects. In March of last year, an AIA survey found that all respondents agreed there was a lack of people of color in the industry, but only half of the men participating in the survey believed there was gender inequity in the profession. This response was in contrast to women participants who indicated gender inequity is a major problem in the architecture field.
Respondents said that work-life balance hurdles are keeping women out of architecture, as are the obstacles in re-establishing a career after having children, the lack of role models, lower pay than male counterparts and reduced opportunities for promotion.
Earlier this year, the AIA's Equity in Architecture Commission proposed several ways to increase diversity in the field, including making diversity a core value of the AIA and publishing guides to help architecture firms establish equitable employment practices.
Gender equity is a glaring issue in the construction industry, and there is increasing awareness that it won't improve on its own. Although women represent 47% of the workforce, they make up only 9% of the construction industry.
In Boston, industry leaders and advocates formed the Policy Group on Tradeswomen’s Issues in order to get more women in the field. As of October of last year, women's participation in the state's construction industry rose to 5% of all construction hours worked and 6.3% of apprentice positions.