On 26th January 2018 Gillian Harrison wrote:

Women in Architecture: working in the Northern Powerhouse

Victoria, Kal and I attended a Women in Architecture panel discussion yesterday that focused on working in the Northern Powerhouse. I’d been struggling with how these two strands were linked until I was struck by a direct parallel between the two organisations. The north has suffered from historic under-investment and subsequently lags behind the more affluent south east. Women working in architecture and construction have historically been under-represented and their contribution diminished. And yet, as Sue Emms from BDP pointed out, Manchester and other northern cities are ‘just getting on with it’ and making great headway with growth and development. Similarly, the panel of talented successful architects (who are women) – Sue, Rachel Haugh of Simpson Haugh and our own Victoria Turner – have also just got on with it. But the reason to come together and speak with one voice, as Women in Architecture or as the Northern Powerhouse, is that there is still a long way to go to address the imbalances. Once we get to parity, to more balanced economies across the UK, and to real diversity within the construction sector, then perhaps these organisations won’t be needed anymore. Until then, we continue to come together to be heard.