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© Col·legi d'Arquitectes de Catalunya (COAC)

To mark International Women’s Day on 8 March, the COAC is promoting the campaign “We are women and we are architects!”, put together by the Open Group of Women Architects and the COAC’s Barcelona office. The initiative aims to showcase our country’s female talent by publicising works bearing the names of women.

The COAC wants its social media accounts to serve as a window on the work of women architects and to highlight the particularities and characteristics of the female gaze in the profession. That is why during the month of March we will be showcasing the women architects who have participated in the campaign with an exhibition featuring around a 100 works under the hashtag #socArquitectA.New buildings, renovations, urban planning and design projects and theoretical studies related to architecture will be presented in an initiative that will also showcase the diversity of professional profiles.

Still a way to go
Architecture has traditionally been a male-dominated profession. Currently, only 33% of Association members are women, but the numbers are on the rise. In fact, for years now, more women architects than men have been graduating from architecture schools, and 47% of new members are women.

Even so, there is still a long way to go. Fewer women than men lead architectural firms: of the nearly 2,000 architects who have their own offices, only 482 are women, less than a quarter (24.9%) of the total. Men triple this percentage to 75.1% (1,457).

Women are also the group to feel the effects of a crisis more quickly, as can be seen in the number of women withdrawing their Association membership. In the context of the crisis caused by the COVID-19 pandemic, this dynamic could already be felt in 2020: 2.6% of the women left the COC, almost one point above the 1.7% of men who did so.

The COAC, committed to gender equality
The COAC has long shown its commitment to gender equality. The institution’s Governing Board is parity-based and there is also an Equality Plan, as well as a guide for the use of non-sexist language. The COAC also gives visibility to women architects by organising events and activities through the Open Group of Women Architects, made up of more than 180 female architects working in different areas of the profession.