reSITE to Rebalance Gender Inequality in Architecture and Design

reSITE aims to do its part in elevating female voices as an opportunity to achieve social balance in architecture and design. By bringing together all different backgrounds we can create provocative conversations around housing and quality of life that reflects the different needs of everyone.

The existing gender imbalance in architecture and design is reflected in conferences or events. reSITE is the exception.
Martin Barry, reSITE Founder

Since its genesis in 2012, reSITE has always invited and attracted outstanding women, both on the stage and in the audience. Our ambition is to continue our work while fostering the gender balance in the architecture and design professions to correct the ratio of female voices in urban design disciplines and municipal decision making.

“There is a gender imbalance that has been artificially created, so we think it’s important we do what we can to stimulate actions that rectify it, or rebalance. The existing gender imbalance in architecture and design and reflected in conferences or events. reSITE is an exception. We work hard to balance the presence on stage, but with far fewer women in the industry, far fewer are then at a high level to be able to afford to take off work and attend an event to then further their career. Conferences aren’t pointless at all. One of our main objectives is to bring people together, out of the silos. If only men are coming, because they can afford it, and have an easier time getting out of work - then we have failed.” - Martin Barry

#WomenMakeCities at reSITE 2018

reSITE encourages female designers, architects and women in cities leadership to attend the annual conference reSITE 2018 ACCOMMODATE focused on housing. reSITE is proud to present architect Jeanne Gang and choreographer Elizabeth Streb amongst the first announced guests, along with several female Mayors invited to speak at the event. A special promotion “Women Make Cities” has been introduced offering a 70% discount from the standard registration fee to all women working in design, architecture, cities leadership and administration (bringing the price to €75).

Read more from Dezeen how reSITE is helping to move the needle

Our last campaign offering a generous discount for females to attend RESONATE Thinking Sound & Space which took place last month in Lisbon stirred a provocative conversation amongst the design community - perhaps one that needs to be had. Media partners, Dezeen shared the initiative that stimulated such discussion. One commenter said "Now even more women can afford to come and listen to male speakers".

Traditionally, it has been decided upon what to play, how to deal with it, in dark rooms, by old men, in dark suits. And it needs to change, that definitely needs to change
Kjetil Trædal Thorsen, Snøhetta
Birgit Lohmann and Kjetil Thorsen at RESONATE. Photo | Jerry Placken
Birgit Lohmann and Kjetil Thorsen at RESONATE. Photo | Jerry Placken

During the panel discussion between Snøhetta architect, Kjetil Trædal Thorsen and designboom founder, Birgit Lohmann, Thorsen shed light on his motivation to make the Oslo Opera House transparent - for more reasons than just dark winters in Norway’s capital.

"I like this issue of transparency, on many levels, it’s something that we miss. I think architecture and opera houses have something in common, and that is, traditionally it has been decided upon what to play, how to deal with it in dark rooms by old men in dark suits, and it needs to change. That definitely needs to change. More than 50% of architectural students worldwide are female. There is some sort of secrecy that is happening around to certain portions of architecture, but we should say open the doors, show it, even if it’s not finished, it’s fine. You can see people rehearsing, you can see the dancers from the outside, you can see them making wigs and costumes." - Kjetil Trædal Thorsen, Snøhetta

We hope by doing our part we can inspire a growing generation of females.

reSITE is a global non-profit acting to improve the urban environment

Cities are the sum of designers, developers, artists, citizens, public officials, entrepreneurs, and the displaced, but rarely do each of these constituencies gather in the same room or even speak the same language, and cities suffer for it. But, reSITE is literally that room. Our events, stories, talks and podcast frame the future of our cities through as many lenses as possible and convenes them in one place. All to to make our cities more livable and lovable.

reSITE Talks from Female Voices

Landscape is Everything Around You with Kathryn Gustafson

Kathryn Gustafson is a landscape architect and co-founded the landscape architecture firm Gustafson Porter + Bowman, based in London. Gustafson’s projects include Gardens of the Imagination in Terrasson, France, Westergasfabriek in Amsterdam, Diana, Princess of Wales Memorial Fountain in London.

Caroline Bos | reSITE Small Talks

We spoke with Caroline Bos at DOX, Prague's Center for Contemporary Art, about her perception of the architectural profession.

Immigration and Decentralizing Cities with Saskia Sassen

World renowned urban sociologist and professor at Columbia University in New York, Saskia Sassen explains how city size and openness play a role in cosmopolitan cultural development. She highlights the stark contrast between smaller and larger cities and their abilities to accommodate the influx of not only migrants but also the “thick” local cultures which influence overall quality of life.

Janette Sadik-Khan | Making New York City Sustainable

Keynote lecture by Janette Sadik-Khan, former Commissioner of the Department of Transportation, The City of New York, at reSITE 2012 conference.

How to Design Future-Proof Cities?

Caroline Bos, a Dutch urban planner and the co-founder of Amsterdam-based architectural design network UNStudio, explains about designing resilient cities.

Kathryn Gustafson on The Art of Landscape Architecture

Co-founder of landscape architecture studio Gustafson Porter + Bowman, Kathryn Gustafson embodies the role of artistry through landscape architecture. Noting that art is often a reflection of the artists’ contemporary moment, Gustafson seeks to channel art through landscape design as a reflection of the world around.

Balance Between Public + Private Space with Mimi Hoang

Mimi Hoang talks about architecture, cities, public space, private space, affordable housing, apartments, interior design and layout.

City Is an Extraordinary Animal

“A huge development project with high-densities is not yet a city. City is an extraordinary animal.” - Saskia Sassen

Illuminating Cities After Dark with Leni Schwendinger | reSITE Small Talk

Leni Schwendinger discusses the 24-hour city, and the reality of an urbanism that utilizes nighttime hours. Through lighting that makes public spaces both accessible and emit a sense of security, the potential for activities in the urban to span throughout the night can become a reality for a wider portion of the population.

Copenhagen­izing Warsaw

Marlena Happach is the director for the Department of Architecture and Planning for the city of Warsaw.

Vienna Makes Peace With Its Waste

"In/visible city? That’s my point!” says Martina Ableidinger at the reSITE 2017: In/visible City conference.

How We Gave Back Mariahilfer Straße to Pedestrians

Mascha Onderwater from Amsterdam-based Bureau B+B on the transformation of Vienna's main shopping street, the Mariahilfer Straße into a pedestrian zone.

Related Stories

Human-Centered Smart Cities with Marianthi Tatari

Associate Director and Senior Architect at UNStudio, Marianthi Tatari, dissects different aspects of city-making that threaten the quality of life such as mono-functional spaces and commoditized smart cities and how to approach designing them with optimism. Photo courtesy of UNStudio

Jee Liu on Applying Subtle Design to Adaptive Reuse

At the core of WallaceLiu’s projects is a design practice called adaptive reuse. In the age of the quest for sustainability, adaptive reuse is becoming more of a necessity for city-makers worldwide.

What is Luxury? Interview with Dara Huang at reSITE 2018

Dara Huang is an award winning architect and founder of Design Haus Liberty, an architectural firm that often works with clients to design high-end buildings.

Jeanne Gang Will Discuss the Microcosm of the Urban Milieu in Prague

Martin Barry walks you through program tips for reSITE 2018: Jeanne Gang, the Founding Principal of Chicago-based Studio Gang is one of the most anticipated guests to speak in Prague this June.

Stories Library