AILA Launches Gender Equity Study Project

Screen Shot 2018-03-08 at 21.53.22AILA  has launcged a Gender Equity Study Project in Collaboration with Parlour: women, equity, architecture and the Monash University XYX Lab.

Australian Institute of Landscape Architects (AILA) announced the launch of a Gender Equity Study to investigate the participation of women in landscape architecture and develop strategies to address gender inequity in the profession.

AILA said: There is currently a lack of critical research into workplace equity within the Australian landscape architecture profession. AILA is taking action, undertaking research that will enable the profession to chart a new future.

AILA’s Chief Executive Officer, Tim Arnold, commented “Today is International Women’s Day and I couldn’t think of a better time to announce that AILA is launching a Gender Equity Study, This is an exciting time for AILA as we take a leadership role as an inclusive, progressive and modern profession.”

The research and action project will be undertaken in collaboration with the research-based advocacy organisation Parlour: women, equity, architecture, and the XYX Lab at Monash University.

Dr Gill Matthewson, who is responsible for the analytics behind much of Parlour’s research into the situation for women in architecture, said “What analysis of the numbers of women did for the architecture profession was to shift the argument from vague anecdote to undeniable fact. It’s great that AILA is commissioning this work because you need to know what the situation actually is before you can start strategising what to do about it. I’m very interested to see what the picture is for women in landscape architecture.”

The project will build on the results of AILA’s 2017 salary survey, which identified concern about gender inequality within landscape architecture. Of the survey respondents, women represented 70% of the lower paid positions within the profession, while men represent 100% of the high-income earners. More broadly in Australian society, we know that the full-time worker gender pay gap is about 15% (or $253 per week).

Gender equity is critical to growth of landscape architecture and embracing the benefits of gender diversity.

The project will develop an understanding of how we perform broadly as a profession and what might need to happen to improve. It will assist those workplaces that already have gender equity practices and principles in place to continue to improve and provide an important base for others to get started.

Landscape architecture practices and individuals can show their commitment to the project by declaring financial support for the initiative.

“Plenty of members have spoken to me about the importance of this study so we’re providing an opportunity for employers in our industry and individuals to help us fund it,” Arnold said.

“AILA works with a relatively small operating budget and this is a big use. The project requires a worthy investment to make sure it is done properly. AILA is in a position to fund elements of the study but with the support of practices we will be able to ensure it is done properly and more importantly, we can accelerate the initiative.”

“We’re pleased to announce that the Built Environment Channel, who is new partner of AILA and Parlour, has already confirmed their financial backing of the initiative.”

Following completion of the study, AILA will work with members to determine the next steps – they could include the development of gender equity policies, resources, scholarly publications and women’s leadership programs.

Want to know more? Click here  for a more detailed project overview.