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Women-led Architecture Firms

A guide dedicated to illuminating the roles of women and women of color executives (principals, partners, or directors) in architecture firms large and small.


About this Guide

Recent publications from the American Institute of Architecture (AIA) shows that almost half of architecture students in America are women, but women comprise only 17% of registered architects. Data from 2017 published by the National Council of Architectural Registration Boards (NCARB) reports that 15% of new architects identify as non-white. Women and women in color groups remain underrepresented in the field of architecture. In this research guide, we have highlighted architecture firms large and small that have women and women of color executives (principals, partners, or directors).

While some of these firms are eight people strong, others have hundreds of employees. All have been mentioned in Architectural Record in the past five years (2014-2019), and some even have their own publications about their firm. They are from all around the world, and have been separated by size of the company. Any discrepancies between the amount of firms in each category is revealing of the nature of firm management. Women are most commonly the executives of small and medium sized firms, with a significant less amount within larger firms.

The AIA defines firm size as small being 1-9 employees, medium 10-49, and large with over 50 employees. 

Guide created and augmented by graduate assistants Claire Markuson and Xochitl Quiroz at University of Illinois Urbana-Champaign as part of the #FromMargintoCenter initiative at the Ricker Library of Architecture and Art. Edited for use by Indiana University-Bloomington by graduate assistant, Loesje Krabbe.