As Sweden has taken on the Presidency of the Council of Europe for the first half of 2023, the Swedish Presidency has now presented their programme for their presidency. Their focus points include measures to strengthen the security of a unified Europe, improve the competitiveness of the Union, continue efforts towards the green transition and maintain democratic values. The Swedish Presidency also expressed its goals in terms of employment and social affairs, as they have set out to combat gender inequality and work towards non-discrimination in the workplace and as a social policy. The Programme demonstrates plans on a Directive on equality bodies, as well as a Directive on binding measures for transparency in salary-settings and proposing an anti-discrimination Directive to the Council. These measures show an active approach in the fight against gender-based discrimination and mark an important step towards achieving gender equality.
Further proving their commitment to this issue, the Swedish Presidency of the Council of the European Union has arranged a conference on Economic perspectives on gender-based violence on 1 and 2 February, where the presenters explored the linkage between men’s violence against women and economic empowerment.
More information on the event as well as Livestreams of the presentations can be found here.
The full Programme of the Swedish Presidency of the Council can be found here. Find out more information on the Programme here.
For the third time, the European Commission is organising the New European Bauhaus Prizes. These continuously aim at highlighting spectacular projects as well as innovative concepts that promote aesthetics, sustainability and inclusivity. The NEB Prizes are particularly representative of young architects and women architects, as the projects are evaluated by a professional team of assessors.
The Call for this round of the Bauhaus Prizes have now been opened. Applications are taken from the four different categories:
Reconnecting with nature
Regaining a sense of belonging
Prioritising the places that need it the most
Shaping a circular industrial ecosystem and supporting life-cycle thinking
Each of the four categories has separate competitions for different groups of applications:
New European Bauhaus Champions: For completed projects
New European Bauhaus Rising Stars: For ideas and concepts by young talents under 30
New European Bauhaus Education Champions: For projects and initiatives focussed on education and learning
The winners of the categories within their competition each receives EUR 30.000 (or EUR 14.000 for Rising Stars) as well as a communication package from the European.
The submission deadline is on 31 January at 19:00 CET, 2023.
For this year’s round, the West Balkan States may apply with all European Member States.
The European Commission has also called for experts to evaluate the submissions. It is important that the panel of judges and assessors is deeply represented by female architects in order to combat any biases.
Applications can be submitted until December 2022, the European Commission is looking for experts on the categories sustainability, aesthetics and quality of experience as well as inclusiveness. Experts can also apply with a background of education.
On 15 November 2022, the annual award ceremony for the Prix Français des Femmes Architectes (French Award for Women Architects) was held in Paris. This is the tenth edition of said award, and it is still seen as an exemplary measure for honouring women in architecture. It was made to give recognition to female French architects and highlight their contributions to building culture.
YesWePlan! has listed the Femmes Architectes Award as a Best Practice Example, as this prize realises some of the essential recommendations put out with the YesWePlan! 4 in 1 Compendium. It even inspired the launch of the Austrian equivalent, the AnotHER VIEWture Award, which was held in Vienna in October of 2022 for the first time (click here to view our article on the AnotHER VIEWture Award ceremony).
The four categories (prize for young female architect, prize for an original work by a woman architect, overall prize for a woman architect as well as an award for an international female architect) all produce extraordinary winners and give light to their projects.
The winners of the individual categories were chosen by an all-female jury based on different categories. These were discussed and evaluated individually, giving each nomination particular care and attention. One jury member is Catherine Guyot, who is secretary general of the organising chamber ARHVA and president of the jury and played a vital role bringing the award to life and also participated in YesWePlan! as a project partner.
The winners of the Femmes Architectes Award are:
Christine Vega Iclesias as Young Woman Architect of 2022 Julie Degand for her project “Salle polyvalente et culturelle Sodbury” as original work by a woman architect in 2022 Rozana Montiel from Mexico as International Woman Architect of 2022 Chrystelle Avenier as Woman Architect of the Year
On 20 October 2022, the first ever AnotHER VIEWture Award was held in Vienna in the Academy of Fine Arts. This architectural competition was created by the Austrian Federal Chamber of Engineering Consultants (BKZT) in order to give women in architecture and engineering recognition for their contributions to building culture and help shape the industry towards equality and diversity. As such, the AnotHER VIEWture award is a fresh Best Practice Example for YesWePlan!, being shaped after the listed example of the French Femmes Architectes award by project partner ARHVA.
The evening itself entailed a warm welcome by Daniel Fügenschuh, the president of the BKZT, and Bettina Dreier, who is the chairwoman of the Committee for Women Architects and Chartered Engineering Consultants and played a large role in realising YesWePlan! from the beginning. Monika Vana, Member of the European Parliament and the FEMM committee, was able to participate at the event via video message, where she expressed the importance of highlighting women in STEM professions.
The award ceremony continued by presenting two speakers who held informative and valuable presentations on women in architecture. The first was Barbara Zibell, a Swiss urban planner and expert on gender issues, as she gave an overview on the history of women in architecture and civil engineering, especially concerning architectural awards. The second presentation was held by Anna Resch, sociologist and cooperation partner of the YesWePlan! Project. As part of her Master thesis on “Women Architects and Civil Engineers in Austria – A Qualitative Analysis of Gender-Related Aspects of the Individually Shaped Life and Working Environment of Austrian Women Architects and Engineering Consultants”, she analysed some outputs of YesWePlan! further with a special focus on the Recommendations.
The highlight of the evening was reached as the awards were presented and distributed to the winners of the four categories.
Eva Gyüre, who played a key role in bringing the YesWePlan! project to life, explained the process behind the jury decisions as head of the all-female jury. The certificates were awarded by President of the Committee of Women Architects and Civil Engineering Consultants Katharina Fröch, congratulating each of the winners individually.
The award for (Austrian) Female Architect of the Year was secured by architect Barbara Poberschnigg for her economical use of resources in three different projects, the award was presented by Katharina Bayer.
The second category – Emerging Female Architect of the Year – was won by architect Catharina Maul. The jury chose her for her various designs, that particularly were designed with a sense of social responsibility and maturity despite her young age. Eva Álvarez, cooperation partner of YesWePlan! from Spain, held the laudatory speech for this award.
The last award reserved for Austrian nominees was the Female Engineering Achievement of the Year Award. For this accomplishment, Austrian engineering consultant Carla Lo was chosen with her design of the ‘schwimmende Gärten’. The presenting jury member Margarete Salzer congratulated her for her exemplary work in creating a comfortable and animating space right at the Danube Channel in Vienna.
The fourth and final award for International Female Architect of the Year was open for applications to Architects who are not from or working in Austria. This was awarded to Lithuanian architect Sabina Grincevičiūtė, who impressed the jury with her sustainability focussed projects. The listed examples included a contemporary conversion of a warehouse and a modern restoration of a concrete factory.
For more information on the AnotHER VIEWture award, please visit its website. We encourage you look at the winning designs and click through the shortlisted nominations as well.
Though the YesWePlan! Project has now officially come to an end, the many outcomes that resulted from the project are now finding their way into practice by professionals in education, profession and work places. The YWP! Recommendations provides tools and suggestions for changes in the different environments in order to achieve a more inclusive environment for women architects and engineers.
A basic Recommendation for representative organisations is to promote gender equality in leading positions in organisations and to commit to diversity and equity in the decision making. The 2022 elections in the Chambers of Architects and Chartered Engineering Consultants in Austria show some great results as regards this aim:
The election of the regional Chamber of Architect and Chartered Engineering Consultants of Upper Austria and Salzburg brought about its first female Chamber President, Chartered Engineering Consultant Cora Stöger. As the Professional Section of Architects is vice-chaired by Architect Susanne Seyfert, this means that the Presidium is composed of two female and four male professionals.
For the Section of Architects in the regional Chamber of Architects and Chartered Engineering Consultants of Tyrol and Vorarlberg the elections also led to very remarkable results: The Section of Architect is chaired and vice-chaired by women Architects, Architect Carmen Schrötter-Lenzi and Architect Veronika König. Additionally, the Section of Chartered Engineering Consultants is vice-chaired by Chartered Engineering Consultant Regina Mayer, which means that the composition of the Presidium is fully gender equal with 50% women.
In the regional Chamber of Architects and Chartered Engineering Consultants of Vienna, Lower Austria and Burgenland both Professional Sections are now chaired by women, Architect Evelyn Rudnicki and Chartered Engineering Consultant Michaela Ragossnig-Angst. This means that also here two of six members of the Presidium are female.
The regional Chamber of Architects and Chartered Engineering Consultants of Carinthia and Styria confirmed Architect Barbara Frediani-Gasser in her role as Vice President, while the rest of the Presidium is male.
The Committee of women Architects and Chartered Engineering Consultants that has initiated and conducted the “YesWePlan!” Erasmus+ Project is happy about this important sign towards gender equality in professional representation. “Regarding the fact, that the share of women in architecture and in the engineering professions overall is still very low, this is a great result and a very good initial position for finally changing structural discrimination problems within the professional bodies. It also gives motivation and impetus to our work in the Committee”, confirms Chairwoman Architect Bettina Dreier.
Award Ceremony on 20 October 2022, Akademie der Bildenden Künste /Academy of Fine Arts in Vienna
Save the date for a special event:
AnotHERVIEWture is the new annual award in Austria for excellence in female civil engineering and architecture that is going to introduce women and their work to you and a broader public in order to raise awareness of the female contribution in the building industry and to highlight role models in order to transform this field of profession towards equality and diversity.
On 20 October 2022, the first Award Ceremony is going to take place in Vienna at the Akademie der Bildenden Künste / Academy of Fine Arts.
At the occasion, Anna Resch, sociologist and cooperation partner of the YesWePlan! Project will present the results of her Master thesis on “Women Architects and Civil Engineers in Austria – A Qualitative Analysis of Gender-Related Aspects of the Individually Shaped Life and Working Environment of Austrian Women Architects and Engineering Consultants” which is written as a secondary analysis of the Erasmus+ project “Yes, we plan!”. Qualitative guided interviews will be used to investigate the question of how the individual working and living environment of female architects/civil engineers in Austria is structured. The focus is on the individual experiences of the participants and an interdisciplinary consideration from a sociological perspective, in order to be able to derive from a visualisation of the interrelationships which measures need to be taken specifically in Austria in order to be able to optimise the professional fields for women.
At the 4th European Engineers Day which took place in Brussels on 21 June, co-organising Organisation ECEC (European Council of Engineers Chambers) made a start to implement the YwP! recommendations and invited Geodetic surveyor Blazenka Micevic, to hold a speech on why women power is essential for the success of the New European Bauhaus.
The Erasmus+ project YesWePlan!, launched at the end of 2019 by the Austrian Federal Chamber of Architects and Chartered Engineering Consultants and carried out by professional organisations and universities from 5 European countries, has been completed: The aim of the project was to determine the influence of women in European Baukultur and to identify and counteract gender inequalities within the professions of architects and civil engineers. To reach this goal, data from Germany, Austria, France, Slovenia and Spain were collected via Europe-wide online surveys and additional in-depth interviews; a total of almost 1000 architects and civil engineers took part.
The results were complemented by country reports on the legal situation and by statistical data and best practice examples from the partner countries. In order to counteract the gender gap in a targeted and sustainable way, recommendations for professional organisations, training institutions and employers were derived from the project results. These include measures and tools that should contribute to equal treatment in the individual institutions, they were presented on 31 March 2022 in Vienna in the ‘Haus der EU’ and later discussed with the presidents of the European professional organisations: Ruth Schagemann for the Architects Council of Europe, Klaus Thürriedl for the European Council of Engineers Chambers and Andreas Brandner for the European Council of Civil Engineers. Evelyn Regner, Vice President of the European Parliament, hosted the event and stressed the importance of gender equality, especially in technical professions.
The results of the YesWePlan project are collected in a Compendium 4 in 1.
The Federal Chamber of Civil Engineers is now implementing this newly collected knowledge on several levels: As a transfer of a French best practice example (the French Award for Women Architects), a new award for women’s achievements in building culture will be presented for the first time in October 2022 in Austria. Applications for this AnotHER VIEWture AWARD will be accepted until 30 June. Access to the ‘International Female Architect of the Year Award’ is open to women architects of all nationalities.
ARVHA, Association for Research on the City and Housing, launches the 10th edition of the French Prize for Women Architects with the support of the Pavillon de l’Arsenal, the National Council of the Order of Architects of the Region Ile de France and the city of Paris. For the 2022 Awards, ARVHA also receives the support of BNP Paribas Real Estate, Ciments Calcia (HeidelbergCement France), Unibail-Rodamco-Westfield, Pitchimo and COGEDIM as well as media support: Le journal de l’Architecte,Téma-archi et Batiactu.
This award aims at highlighting the work and careers of women architects, so that young women architects can build on existing female models, and at encouraging parity and equality in a male-dominated profession.
The only requirements to participate in the award are to be registered with the Order of Architects or their country (or chamber or architects) and being the author of the projects.
Four prizes are awarded for the the tenth edition :
Young Woman Architect Prize for women under 40 years old, for her projects (built or to-be);
Original Work Prize for a work conducted by a female architect;
Woman architect Prize for projects – 3-5 works constructed;
International Prize 3-5 works constructed by a woman architect registered to the Order of Architect in her own country.
The competition is open from the 15th of May and will end the 31st of July 2022.
The award ceremony will be held 15th of November 2022 at “Pavillon de l’Arsenal” in Paris from 5pm to 8pm.