This year’s “Mind the Gap – Diversity Award” went to the Gender Taskforce Team consisting of Petra Petersson (Dean of the Faculty of Architecture), Ena Kukić, Anna Sachsenhofer and Budour Khalil (Institute of Construction and Design Principles). The prize, presented by Vice Rector Stefan Vorbach, is awarded once a year to the five best submissions by students and employees of Graz University of Technology that deal with the human factor and its diversity in technology and the natural sciences carried out within the parameters of scientific work, initiatives or publications.
The Gender Taskforce, consisting of four women of different origin and academic positions, sees itself as a working group that campaigns for gender equality in architectural education. As part of an analysis of teaching materials, the team found a considerable underrepresentation of reference projects by women architects: only 4.2 percent of the examples come from women, while the proportion of female students is over 50 percent. In order to update the teaching materials, a strategy based on the proven approach of the KTH University in Stockholm was developed and implemented. This was presented at a workshop to develop similar initiatives for the Faculty of Architecture. Participants of the workshop included the international guests Charlotte Malterre-Barthes (Harvard GDS, Department of Urban Planning and Design, Parity Front ETH Zurich) and Bernadette Krejs (Vienna University of Technology, Institute for Housing and Design, Claiming Spaces collective), a Representative of the Office for Gender Equality and Equal Opportunity of TU Graz , as well as interested collogues from the faculty. The jury consisted of Cornelia Lex (Institute of Automotive Engineering), Günter Getzinger (Head of the Science Technology and Society Unit), Stefan Vorbach (Vice Rector for Academic Affairs), Horst Bischof (Vice Rector for Research) und Barbara Herz (Chair of the Working Group for Equal Opportunities and Head of the Office for Gender Equality and Equal Opportunity). The Jury emphasized the “remarkable diversity of perspectives as well as the participatory approach” of the initiative.
Further information on the Gender Taskforce: http://lampz.tugraz.at/~koen/gender-taskforce-workshop/
Further information on the Mind the Gap Award: https://www.tugraz.at/tu-graz/universitaet/leitziele-und-schwerpunkte/diversitaet/diversitaet/