by Camila Schaulson Frenz
In late December 2016, the AIA National Board of Directors adopted the recommendations of the Equity in Architecture Commission, who identified root causes to the lack of diversity in the profession and offered suggestions on how to address these issues, as well as a timeline for implementation. The commission, which included architects, educators, and diversity experts, was launched in November 2015 with the goal of forging action plans for achieving equitable practices through measurable goals.
Highlights of the group’s recommendations include:
- Expose children and families to architecture through K-12 programs, with elements that help underrepresented groups discover architecture.
- Develop self-assessment tools to collect data on diversity and inclusion issues in the biannual AIA Firm Survey, and use results to establish best practices.
- Create and publish best practice guidelines for architectural practices, covering themes such as career progression, work culture, pay equity, and talent recruitment.
To that end, AIA also announced a second donation of $1,000,000 to the Diversity Advancement Scholarship fund, aimed at improving equity, diversity and inclusion among people entering the profession. This builds upon the $1,000,000 already earmarked in 2013 for the Diversity Advancement Scholarships, administered by the AIA Foundation.
On 02.27.17, the Center for Architecture will host Damon Leverett, MFA, AIA, LEED AP, Managing Director of Diversity and Emerging Professionals Engagement at AIA National to discuss the newly-adopted recommendations.