We are Architektky [Women in Architecture], a platform whose initial impulse is to connect women working in the fields related to built environment.
Gradually, some of our activities have grown. We raise issues related to fair opportunities and diverse needs within the architectural profession.
Our goal is to achieve greater diversity in architectural representation, making architecture more open to diverse approaches and outputs and creating a kind, respectful environment.
We create a supportive environment for diverse profession paths.
Our online FB group Architektky consists of 1400+ members
On instagram, we have
over 2200 followers
Why do we do it?
Our story began with the perceived underrepresentation of women in the architectural scene in education, media and practice. A situation that a few decades ago could simply be explained by the low percentage of women students in architecture faculties, now has a much more complex causal context.
In Czech architectural faculties, over 60 % of all students identify themselves as women and each year, hundreds of them succesfully graduate.* However, only 20% of architects in leading positions in studios are women and the same goes for the position of city architects.** Where are these women professionals? And why do they make up only 35% of new members registered with Czech Chamber of Architects (ČKA)?***
Gradually, we have begun to uncover long-described phenomena such as gender pay gap, the glass ceiling in career progression, or greater pressure on women to combine work and family care. **** In addition, other disadvantages for certain groups of workers within the architectural profession that go beyond gender (e.g. precarious forms of labor*****) can be traced. Ultimately, it is the culture within the profession itself that creates a highly competitive environment with extreme pressure on performance. This is fostered by the often subjective evaluation criteria and individualistic approach that future architects are encouraged to adopt already at school.
We want to change this. We want architecture as a discipline to be more inclusive, providing an inspiring environment for people with different life experiences and varying levels of privilege. We believe that the more diverse representation we can bring to the field, the better environment we will create not only for ourselves, but for society as a whole.
* Data from study departments of all schools with recognized and related education according to ČKA.
** Data available from the ČKA website and from the websites of schools with recognized and related education according to ČKA.
*** 35 % represents the number of successfully authorized women architects only in recent years. The total number of authorized women architects is even smaller – about 25%. Data available from the ČKA website.
**** Research data Working conditions of young architects (ERA21 magazine, issue 03/2020)
*****According to the Working Conditions of Young architects survey, 48% of respondents work on a trade licence as freelance architects (without an employee status) for one main customer.
Media and news
Architektky at Czechdesign.cz
How have we moved forward in the past few years as an organization and what are the most pressing issues for us within the industry? Interview with Adéla Vavříková and Alžběta Brůhová for Czechdesign.
Read the interview (in Czech)...
Architektky in A2larm podcast
In May, Prague gallery VI PER opened our exhibition TRUTH X CARE: How is life for children and parents in Prague? In addition to Alžběta and Adéla, the authors interdisciplinary team also included Klára Brůhová, Karin Hoření and Jakub Plachý.
Listen to the podcast (in Czech)...
About Architektky in Bourání, Radio Wave
Alžběta and Klára Brůhová talked to Karolína Vránková about women in architecture not only from a contemporary but also from a historical perspective. Where do women disappear, what can we do about it, and what role does biological or symbolic sisterhood play in architecture?
Listen to us (in Czech)...
Architektky in Forbes
Forbes magazine has selected Architektky as one of 7 inspirational professional communities focused on women. We are in company of Femme Palette, Ženy v právu, Ženy v byznysu, Holky z marketingu, Minerva 21 and Ženy s.r.o.
Read the article (in Czech)...
Architektky among #grlpwr communities
Founder of Holky z marketingu Pavlína Louženská chose Architektky for LMC magazine as one of 7 women professional communitites which will give you a helping hand.
Read the article (in Czech)...
Architektky in Karel Janeček's accelerator
We were given the opportunity to participate as one of 10 teams in this year's 3-2-1 dílna social business accelerator, which is sponsored by the Karel Janeček Foundation. We were selected from 66 submitted projects!
Read more (in Czech)...
Architektky v Živé mesto podcast
In the podcast Živé mesto of Radio FM of the Slovak Radio, we talked about women in architecture and compared experiences from the Czech Republic, Slovakia and around the world.
Listen to us (in Czech)...
Architektky as panelists at the US Embassy
We participated as panelists in the discussion Women in architecture organized by the American Center at the US Embassy Prague. We debated with Amy Hetletvedt, Anna Švarc and Regina Loukotová.
Architektky as curators of ERA21 magazine
We curated the issue 03/2020 of the architectural magazine ERA21 with the subtitle Soil of Architecture. We focused on the working conditions of young architects and the opportunities they have after graduation.
Past events (selection):
Mgr. Alžběta Protivanská - Work-life balanc in architecture
Mgr. Magdalena Čevelová - How to prize my work well?
Mgr. Iva Javorská, LL.M. - About conctracts and authorship
Mgr. Alice Červinková - How to built my body?
...with Mgr. arch. Gabriela Kaprálová (ASGK Design)
...with Ing. arch. Alžběta Vrabcová (DMAE Architects)
...with MgA. Kateřina Šedá (Architect of year 2017)
...with Ing. arch. Regina Loukotová, PhD. (ARCHIP)
...about working conditions with architect Josef Pleskot and lawyer Šárka Homfray
...about mental health in architectural profession – with many guests from different fields
Architektky initiate surveys on the state of the architectural profession and education. In cooperation with an interdisciplinary team with sociologist Terezie Lokšová, researcher Eliška Pomyjová and architect Jakub Kopecký, we created a survey Working conditions of young architects.
We also open polls on our instagram account on sensitive topics such as leaving the profession, stories of abuse of power or wages in the architectural profession. For now, all the surveys are in Czech language only. We thank all contributors for their trust. ♡