UBC Graduate Research

Doing feminism in architecture Daigneault Deschênes, Olivia 2018-04

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Part IBridging Gender Equality Workplace Practices and Architectural ProductDoing Feminism in ArchitecturePart IIIf your Pap Test could Speak, What would it Say?ByOlivia Daigneault DeschênesDoing Feminism in ArchitectureBy Olivia Daigneault DeschênesB.Sc Architecture, Université de Montréal, 2015Committee Members:Sherry McKay (GP1 Chair) PhD, MA, BASara Stevesn (GP2 Chair) PhD, MED, B. Arch, BAJames Huemoeller, Architect, Adjunct Professor, UBCDarryl Condon, Architect AIBC, FRAIC, LEED AP, B.Arch, B.Sc. (Arch)We accept this report as conforming to the required standardSherry McKay,  Associate ProfessorSara Stevens,  Associate ProfessorSubmitted in partial fulfillment of the requirements for the degree of Master of Architecturein The Faculty of Graduate StudiesSchool of Architecture and Landscape ArchitectureArchitecture Program© Copyright April, 2018University of British ColumbiaiiiiiAbstractThis thesis investigates the potential for a feminist practice in architecture. Its first part focuses on how the particular culture of the discipline allows for or prevents architecture to be used as a positive force towards gender equality. Through qualitative research in the form of discussion groups and individual interviews, the thesis identifies a gap in the attitude towards gender between the architectural school culture and workplace practice, on the one hand, and the design process, on the other hand. The first part of the thesis suggest that gender equality in school and in the workplace does not translate in a greater interest for gender relations in design practice and therefore do not lead to an application of feminism in the architectural project. The second part of the design explores a feminist critical spatial practice for sexual health care. The site of inquiry is the gynecological exam room, home of the yearlysexual health check-up exam. Rather than taking the problem-solving approach so established within the architectural education, the project is aimed at deepening understandings of the exam room as a physical manifestation of patriarchy. Through critical inquiry, the project proposes a broad design exploration, organized around 5 cases of alternative exam room designs, each articulating a particular argument. The project demonstrates a potential for critical spatial practice within the discipline of architecture to reveal, unfold and analyze complex physical manifestations of power structures and social orders and, in this sense, make use of architecture as a tool for the development of feminist knowledge.vivTable of ContentsList of Figures viList of Tables ixAcknowledgments xiPart I: Bridging Gender Equality Workplace Practices and Architectural Product 1    Gender Equality in Architecture 3         Architecture School 5         Architecture School - Discussion Groups 9         Architecture Profession 13         Architecture Profession - Interview wih Professionals 22         Architecture Profession - Interview extracts 28Part II: If your Pap Test could Speak, What would it Say? 38    Introduction 39    Precedents Study 42         Women on Waves 42         Sexual Healing 44         AbNorm 46         Androchair 48    Existing Conditions Analysis 50    Feminist Critical Spatial Practice 66    The Exam Room in 5 Experiments 67         Initiation 70         Assembly Line 86         Negotiating Table 102         Garden of Eden 114         Elastic Room 130    Final Presentation 144Conclusion 146Illustrations Credits 148Bibliography 152List of FiguresFig.1           The 3 Elements of the Architecture Discipline 2Fig.2           Gender Distribution among students in the Master of Architecture at UBC, from 2007 to 2016. 4Fig.3           Gender Distribution among students in Canadian Architecture Schools in 2014 4Fig.4           Marguerite Friedlander-Wildenhain, ceramicist student at the Bauhaus 6Fig.5           Gunta Stölzl, weaver student at the Bauhaus 6Fig.6           Benita Otte, weaver student at the Bauhaus 6Fig.7           Discussion groups poster, winter 2017 8Fig.8           Advertisement, RAIC Journal 14Fig.9           Advertisement, RAIC Journal 14Fig.10         Gender distribution of professional architects and the gender wage gap in Architecture in Canada. 16Fig.11         Result of the Architectural Review Survey of 2017 on sexual harassment and discrimination 18Fig.12         Women on Waves’ boat 43Fig.13         Women on Waves’ boat at pier 43Fig.14         Women on Waves’ boat, inside exam room 43Fig.15         Sexual healing object series 45Fig.16         Sexual healing hair brush 45Fig.17         Sexual healing biofeedback objects 45Fig.18         Sexual healing biofeedback object 45Fig.19         The Abuser’s Apartment, Section View 47Fig.20         The Androchair Project 49Fig.21         University Village Medical Clinic, Allison Road, UBC Campus 51Fig.22         University Village Medical Clinic, Birney Street, Westbrook Village 53Fig.23         First Care Medical Clinic, Commercial Drive 55Fig.24         A General Practice Clinic, Oakland, California 57Fig.25         Standard Exam Room from University Village Clinic, Birney St 58Fig.26         Standard Exam Room, sink counter 58Fig.27         Standard Exam Room, Exam Chair 58Fig.28         Compilation of the observed existing conditions to determine conditions of generic site 59Fig.29         Identity Matrix 61Fig.30         Efficiency Diagram 63viiviFig.31         Patient’s Perspective Diagram 65Fig.32         Plans of the 5 Experiments 67Fig.33         Preliminary Sketch 72Fig.34         Preliminary Sketch 73Fig.35         Preliminary Sketch 74Fig.36         Preliminary Sketch 75Fig.37         Preliminary Sketch 76Fig.38         Preliminary Sketch 77Fig.39         Exploration Model 78Fig.40         Exploration Model 79Fig.41         Exploration Model 80Fig.42         Exploration Model 81Fig.43         Plan 82Fig.44         Sections 83Fig.45         Plan Diagram 84Fig.46         Final Model 85Fig.47         Preliminary Sketch 88Fig.48         Preliminary Sketch 89Fig.49         Preliminary Sketch 90Fig.50         Preliminary Sketch 91Fig.51         Preliminary Sketch 92Fig.52         Preliminary Sketch 93Fig.53         Exploration Model 94Fig.54         Exploration Model 95Fig.55         Exploration Model 96Fig.56         Final Model 97Fig.57         Plan 98Fig.58         Section 99Fig.59         Chair Movement Diagram 100Fig.60         Clinic Sequence Diagram 101Fig.61         Preliminary Sketch 104Fig.62         Preliminary Sketch 105Fig.63         Preliminary Sketch 106Fig.64         Preliminary Sketch 107Fig.65         Plan 108Fig.66         Section 109Fig.67         Position Menu 110Fig.68         Position Menu 111Fig.69         Final Model 112Fig.70         Final Model 113Fig.71         Preliminary Sketch 116Fig.72         Preliminary Sketch 117Fig.73         Preliminary Sketch 118Fig.74         Preliminary Sketch 119Fig.75         Exploration Model 120Fig.76         Exploration Model 121Fig.77         Exploration Model 122Fig.78         Exploration Model 123Fig.79         Plan 124Fig.80         Section 125Fig.81         Conceptual Collage 127Fig.82         Final Model 128Fig.83         Final Model 129Fig.84         Preliminary Sketch 132Fig.85         Preliminary Sketch 133Fig.86         Preliminary Sketch 134Fig.87         Preliminary Sketch 135Fig.88         Exploration Model 136Fig.89         Exploration Model 137Fig.90         Exploration Model 138ixviiiFig.91         Exploration Model 139Fig.92         Plan 140Fig.93         Section 141Fig.94         Final Model 142Fig.95         Final Model 143Fig.96         Final Presentation Boards 144Fig.97         Final Models 147List of TablesTable 1         Project’s site diagram                                                                                                              41Table 2         Chart of the 5 Experiments                                                                                                    68xiAcknowledgmentsFirst, I would like to express my most sincere gratitude to my two GP advisors Sherry McKay and Sara Stevens. Thank you Sherry for your encouragement, your patience and your generosity. Thank you Sara for your devotion, your great availability and your guidance. I am so fortunate to have worked under your wings and I see in both of you great mentors and role models. Your involvement in my education will have positive impact far beyond my graduate project.Additionally, I would like to thank James Huemoeller and Darryl Condon for taking part in my project as committee members. Thank you for challenging me throughout the term and devoting your time and energy to my project.Thank you to friends in studio who gave time and energy in helping out for the final push of thesis: Johanna Becker, Ryder Thalheimer, Christine Rohrbacher, Julie Sikora and Shannon MacGillivray.Thank you to my dear friend Mikael Omstedt, for sharing my excitement and for lifting my ambitions.Finally, thank you to my family, who’s support and love remained limitless despite the distance. Merci d’être toujours là pour moi.xiiiÀ ma grand-maman, Laurette DaigneaultÀ la mémoire de mon oncle, Gilles Daigneault.1Part IBridging Gender Equality Workplace Practices and Architectural Product32the Architecture School the Architecture Profession the Architecture Projectthe Architecture Schoolthe Architecture Professionthe Architecture ProjectGender Equality in ArchitectureMy research project seeks to encourage the discipline of architecture to play an active role in achieving gender equality. The engagement of architecture in the political project of gender equality can only be sourced from a conscious decision of professional architects who believe in gender equality and carry a true understanding of the issues involved. In other words, it is unrealistic to expect the discipline of architecture to get involved in the societal project of gender equality if the culture of the architectural discipline doesn’t reflect a model of gender equality, but rather is the opposite in having a culture of masculine domination at its core.Therefore, for the purpose of my research project, I investigate how the culture of the architectural discipline allows or prevents architecture to play a role in achieving gender equality. To do so, I identified three elements that together form the structure of the discipline: the architecture school, the architecture profession and the architecture project. Those three elements are interconnected and they influence one another. The particular culture of the discipline is reproduced in every individual projects and is initially constructed through the educational institution of architecture and reinforced in its professional institution.In the following section, I will elaborate on an investigation of the school and the profession and formulate the argument that a masculine domination persists in the discipline. As a result, the discipline fails to fully include women architects and fails in its practice and its production to overcome the existing social frame that privileges men and oppresses women in society. A second argument is that gender parity in architecture only will not allow for architecture to get involved in achieving gender equality, unless it is paired with a restructuring of the discipline, in order to allow for women and other social groups forming a minority in architecture to work outside of the strictly established frame of the dominant group of white middle-class men. Fig.1          The 3 Elements of the Architecture Discipline5452,6% Female51,5% F 48,0% F48,8% F 47,2% F53,0% F 49,3% F46,1% F49,7% F42,2% F20162015 20142012 20112009 200820132010200760-69% female studentsMcGill Université Laval50-59% female students40-49% female studentsUniversité de MontréalUniversity of WaterlooUniversity of TorontoRyerson UniversityLaurentian UniversityCarleton UniversityUniversity of CalgaryDalhousieUniversity of  ManitobaUBCThe product of architecture is the result of both the professional practice and the educational institution. The architecture school plays a significant role in determining the particular culture of the discipline, deeply rooted in a tradition of a male-only world. It is undeniable that the architecture school is more progressive than the professional workplace. As a matter of fact, women now form more or less half of the student body in architecture schools across the country. At UBC, 52,6% of students in the Master of Architecture were women in 2016. For the last ten years, it has varied from 42,2% to 53% female students in the program (PAIR 2017). In the rest of Canada, 7 of the 12 architecture school had a 50-59% female ratio in 2014. Two schools had over 60-69% female and only 3 schools had between 40-49% female (Chikako Chang 2014). But how is this gender parity reflected in the school curriculum? It seems like architecture school still functions under the tradition of the all-male discipline. Even if women have made their way into architecture schools, their education is a process of forming their identities as an architect, in accordance with the reality of the white middle-class male dominant group. The impact is that a homogenous approach of architecture is enforced on students, independently of their personal identity. Based on American scholar Leslie Kanes Weisman, this aspect of architecture schools is problematic and have consequences on the product of architecture: “How can an architectural education that continued to define professional expertise in relation to the history of white, heterosexual, Euro-American male consciousness prepare students to function as effective professionals in pluralistic communities? How will students be sensitized to difference when they are encouraged to suppress their own gender, race and class identities in the process of becoming professional?” (Weisman 1996, 279)The experience of space differs from one gender to another, due to the social expectation and gender-specific education that construct men and women differently. While the human being is capable of empathy and can be sensitive and understanding of someone else’s experience, it remains true that sometimes, privileged groups take their privilege as a reality and apply it as a generality. Gender Equality in ArchitectureArchitecture SchoolFig.2          Gender Distribution among students in the Master of Architecture at UBC, from 2007 to 2016.Fig.3         Gender Distribution among students in Canadian Architecture Schools in 201476By teaching students to conform to the pre-establish white-male architect mold, the school of architecture denies their ability of becoming a form of authority that could benefit a more diverse social group: “Architects are out of touch with those who use their buildings, and (that) their professional training is part of the process that removes them from many of the people they design for. Architects who are women, and/or come from a working-class background, have to acquire an outlook similar to that of middle-class males, the dominant group in the architectural profession. This is why we shouldn’t expect buildings designed by women to have any qualities distinct from those designed by men.”  (Park 1984, 11)The contemporary school of architecture is highly influenced by the legacy of the École des beaux Arts de Paris and of the Bauhaus. Were women included in these educational institutions? In 1890, a committee was formed at the École des Beaux-Arts to study the possibility of admitting women. Charles Garnier, architect of the Paris Opéra and power figures of the time, strictly opposed to the idea, stating that women in the atelier would be a source of distraction (Clausen 2010, 155). Still today, the archive of the École des beaux-Arts says little about the women who successfully studied and graduated from the school.  A few decates, when the Bauhaus opened in 1919, the progressive philosophy of the school stated that anyone, women and men, could be admitted. The Bauhaus director Walter Gropius stated that there would be “no difference between the beautiful and the strong sex” (Glancey 2009). His chosen words betrayed his real view. Through the story of the Bauhaus, men leaded painting, carving and architecture, while most women were confined to weaving. While architecture school today teaches us to admire the great male figures of the Bauhaus such as Walter Gropius, Ludwig Mies Van der Rohe, Paul Klee, Wassily Kandinsky and László Moholy-Nagy, the women of the Bauhaus such as “Gunta Stölzl (a weaver), Benita Otte (another weaver), Marguerite Friedlaender-Wildenhain (ceramicist), Ilse Fehling (sculptor and set designer) or Alma Siedhoff-Buscher (toy maker)” (Glancey 2009) are strangers to our collective memory.Even if now women are given a proper space in architecture schools, the traditions leg by the Ecole des Beaux-Arts and the Bauhaus remain and it is important to question their foundations and ask if they still suit the values we want to pass on to future architecture students.Fig.4         Marguerite Friedlander-Wildenhain, ceramicist student at the BauhausFig.5         Gunta Stölzl, weaver student at the BauhausFig.6         Benita Otte, weaver student at the Bauhaus98All Female discussion group: All Male discussion group: Mixed discussion group: ARCHITECTURE AND GENDER EQUALITYAn open discussion about the Institution of Architecture School Tuesday, Feb 14, 6-7pmThursday, Feb 16, 6-7pmTuesday, Feb 28, 6-7 pmGender Equality in ArchitectureArchitecture School - Discussion GroupsCurious to find out how peers experience architecture school today, I hosted open discussion groups among students of SALA in the winter semester of 2017. The goal of the discussion groups was to collect personal points of view and experiences in relation to the topic of gender equality in architecture school. In total, I hosted and led three discussion groups: an all-female group, an all-male group and a mixed group. The discussions had a high level of participation and the experience was very beneficial.One of the things that students denounce in these discussion groups was the lack of women sitting as guest reviewers for studio reviews. Too often, students (of which half are women) are asked to present in front of the panel formed by up to five men. When there is women part of the review panel, they seem to be given less time to speak and are interrupted more often by other reviewers. This phenomenon is an issue at two levels: first, it doesn’t offer a diversity of points of view when the panel is so homogenous, and second, the all-male panel at studio reviews fails to provide women students with female role models, and perpetuates the idea that architecture is best suited for men, as argued by writer Dorte Kuhlman in Gender Studies in Architecture:“The typical situation of design criticism with a jury is said to put students under great stress, since not only are their design ideas at stake, but a negative evaluation might also jeopardize their future career. It has been observed that many students regard the jury members with the greatest respect, virtually as demi-gods. Since, on average, there are fewer women on student project juries – just as in the rest of teaching – this important institution of studio criticism reinforces the picture of the male master architect.” (Kuhlman 2013, 46)Furthermore, female students who participated in the discussion groups had lots to say about the treatment architecture school reserves for them. Many have shared their observation of gender biases when it comes to giving critics on a student’s work. They noticed that critiques of a woman student’s work is often made softer and nicer, and would focus a lot on graphic presentation, while the men students receive harder criticism and were asked questions related to conceptual and theoretical concepts. As if still, Fig.7         Discussion groups poster, winter 20171110today, we expect more from men and still doubt the ability of women to understand complex intellectual ideas and theoretical concepts. Several students also reported a different behaviour between female and male members of a same team. During desk reviews with the studio professor, questions are often directed at the male student and the female student will struggle to be part of the conversation, as if the professor makes the assumption that the male student is the brain who carries the project. Similar things happen in final reviews, where women have noticed being interrupted and allowed less time to speak than their male team mate. One of the participants reported a professor referring in front of the group to one of the teams’ project as the project of the male student, discrediting his female partner entirely from the work accomplished as a team. Another participant confessed having been given a lower grade than her male team mate. When confronting her professor as why she didn’t get the same recognition as her team mate for the work, her professor justified her lower grade on the premise that she was “stubborn”. This particular case causes one to wonder if a male student would get punished for questioning his teacher’s authority, or if, on the contrary, he would have been felicitated for his ability to be critical and take on initiatives. Discussions mainly concerned interpersonal interactions with faculty members. Many participants, men and women, expressed their impression that the remaining discrimination and sexism in school would disappear when the older generation retires. However, while the all-female discussion group was lively and engaging, it was harder to get as much from the all-male discussion group. Some male participants demonstrated a great level of sensibility and understanding, but most of them were faced with admitting that they had “never witnessed a situation of sexism, or have been able to see it”. The all-male discussion group was punctuated by awkward silences and many attempts to change the discussed topic. When the discussion went around maternity as part of the reason fewer women achieve registration after graduation, I asked the male participants if they felt, like women, that they have to choose between career and maternity. “It never crossed my mind,” humbly confessed a participant. The social pressure that pushes young women to choose between career or family was well felted by participants of the all-female group. The differences between the all-male and the all-female discussion group remains one of the most valuable findings of the conducted discussions. Despite the belief that sexism is a generational problem, it seems obvious that the gap of understanding between men and women of a same generation doesn’t promise a greater future, unless men are educated to acknowledge their privileges and are sensitized to the reality of their female peers. The mixed discussion group had great moments of dialogue between women and men participants, especially when we shared opinions on what is the role of men as allies and how they can apply their role in the everyday. However, a certain discomfort and restraint were tangible in the ambiance, proof that gender equality is still a sensitive subject among us.Furthermore, the discussion groups support my argument that gender equality and diversity in architecture is the first step towards a design approach that demonstrates empathy and understanding to spatial situations of social inequality. In the course of the discussion group, one of the participants asked the other if their experience of sexism and discrimination had had an impact in the way they approach design projects. After a moment of reflection, some came to the conclusion that they haven’t been able to, which made them felt disappointed. In short, the school of architecture poorly prepares women to the barriers they will face when entering the professional workplace of architecture. Furthermore, it starts to induct a male-dominant culture, perpetuate traditional assumptions of gender that deprives women students of fair recognition for their work, and starts to build a boy’s club by celebrating men more than women, disproportionally. The school of architecture teaches students to respond to a universal model, based on the reality of the dominant group and doesn’t prepare students to understand the different social relations that intersect with our production of space.1312Gender Equality in ArchitectureArchitecture ProfessionMy intention is not to make an extensive historical survey of women’s arrival in the profession. However, I want to demonstrate that the discipline has from the start constructed women architects in a particular way. In the 1920s, the first women registered in architecture associations in Canada. The first Canadian woman registered architect was Esther Marjorie Hill, originally from Guelph, who became a member of the Alberta Association of Architects in 1925 (Adams and Tancred 2000, 19). The number of registered women architects in Canada increased slowly from the 1920s to the 1950s. One by one, architecture schools and professional associations opened their doors, under the insistence of pioneer women. However, in their book «Designing Women: Gender and the Architectural Profession», Annmarie Adams and Peta Tancred explain how difficult it is to fully appreciate women’s influence in the history of architecture in Canada, because the historical process doesn’t account for all of the women who had a significant influence on the discipline while remaining outside of its boundary. Indeed, becoming architect was for a long time out of reach for women, because of the registration process of provincial architecture associations:“One of the difficulties in discussing women’s work is that the discussion is necessarily inserted into male ‘containers’, since our vocabulary for discussing the workplace has, in the main, been formulated on the basis of men’s experience and priorities (Tancred 1995). This is particularly true of women’s professional work, since women are entering a domain that has been tightly defined and controlled by their male colleagues. For this reason, a discussion of women within the profession of architecture is usually limited to what males have considered to be architectural practice and what has been codified in the rules of membership of the provincial professional associations. As a result, many of women’s contributions are neglected and ignored.” (Adams and Tancred 2000, 19)1514One chapter of their book undertook an analysis of the RAIC Journal, from 1924 to 1973, to understand what role the architecture discipline reserved to women pioneers in the field. Following a method of material-culture analysis, their research brought them to the conclusion that the profession positioned women architects on the margin, as specialists of subfields of architecture, such as housing, interiors and heritage preservation. By making being a woman a specificity in architecture, the profession diminished the threat women pioneers represented of taking over the men’s position (Adams and Tancred 2000, 38). Women’s work was presented as being complementary to the design process, rather than fundamental. Advertisements in the RAIC Journal also rendered women as users of the space or as extensions of technology (Adams and Tancred 2000, 48). Through these representations of women, the profession supported a construction of women as reduced sexual and passive objects rather than active and engaged subjects of the architectural professional practice. While women are represented as adjuncts to the profession, as users or as extension of technology, men who are architects are shown to hold the role of the decision makers and the masterminds of the design process. In brief, the RAIC Journal contributed to reinforcing the idea of the architect as “powerful, virile and masculine,” (Adams and Tancred 2000, 51) which increased the position of women architect as a second role and cultivated a deeply embedded domination by men in the discipline. While this study looked at materials from 1924 and 1973 and a lot has changed for the best in the way women architects are received in the profession, a lot of these presuppositions about women and men architect remains today and causes inequalities by gender to persist.Fig.8         Advertisement, RAIC JournalFig.9         Advertisement, RAIC Journal171620,5% Female53 761 $73 646 $Male Average SalaryFemale Average Salary28,5% FemaleRegistered Architect in BCRegistered Architect in CanadaCanadian Female Architects earn 73% of Male Architect’s SalaryThe discipline of architecture is well aware and concerned with the dramatic gap that persists between women who graduate from architecture school and women who successfully register as architects.While half of the student body in architecture school are formed by women, the professional associations still count a minority of women. Looking at gender distribution in the profession is scary. The most recent available data from 2011 reveals that only 20,5% of architects in BC are female. Twenty-eight point five percent of all Canadian architect are female. Based on the same census, female architects make 73% of a male’s salary (Douglas 2015). Clearly, women struggle to make their way, or to remain, in the profession over the long term.A lot of research have tried to find the reasons why women leave the profession massively. Of course, the culture of long hours, the low pay, and the inflexible schedule makes it difficult for women who are more often than men the care taker of children or the elderly (Phillips 2017). In the lecture panel “Career path in architecture” organized by Vancouver’s Women in Architecture at UBC in October 13 2016, all women on the panel with children confessed their new role as moms highly altered their career path (WIA 2016). The Architectural Review survey of 2016 asked architects around the world if having children put women at a disadvantage in architecture? Eighty-four percent of women in the US/Canada answered yes, and 16% women answered no. Sixty-six percent of men respondent from US/Canada answered yes, 34% of men answered no (Tether 2016).  Similar to the observations I made from the discussion groups, with a gap of 22% between women and men who acknowledge that children are a disadvantage for women, men architects demonstrate to not fully understand the reality of their female peers. More than trying to dissect the different systemic and social forces that disadvantage women in the profession, I am mostly interested in finding out what it is like to work in architecture as a woman. How different it is from men’s experience? How does it inform the way we perceive women? The question of women in the professional workplace was brought up in the discussion groups among SALA students. What I found interesting is that almost every woman had at least one anecdote to share from a professional experience. A participant of the all-female discussion group mentioned her boss once said in the office: “We can’t hire more women because I can’t afford to lose another employee leaving for maternity leaves.”  This person makes the dangerous assumption that all women of a certain age will, at some point, get pregnant and leave for maternity leave. The assumption of future pregnancy is a major factor of Fig.10         Gender distribution of professional architects and the gender wage gap in Architecture in Canada.1918gender discrimination at employment.In March 2017, The Architectural Review released the result of their 2017 worldwide survey on women in architecture. The survey reveals a noticeable difference in the experience of the workplace between men and women. Thirty-two percent of women said they had experienced sexual discrimination in the past year, only 3% of men answered the same way. The survey also revealed that sexual discrimination was, in 83% of the time, perpetrated by a man or men (Tether 2017). Twenty-one percent of women, and 4% of men said they experienced direct discrimination in the past year. The survey defines discrimination to “include being ignored, undermined or given impossible tasks to do.” Twenty-eight percent of women, and 15% of men said they had experienced bullying in the past year, which in most cases is perpetrated by a boss or bosses. Finally, over 14% of women, and 2% of men said they had experienced sexual harassment in the past year. The report contains some of the respondent’s personal experience: “I’ve been hit on by various clients, consultants and management. […] Saying no, remaining professional and the pressure of playing it down are not something my male colleagues have to deal with.” This was reported by a woman architectural assistant from the UK (Tether 2017).Not only is discrimination, bullying and harassment, by a large majority, mostly perpetrated on women by men, the phenomenon is still normalized. When asked how frequently a respondent witnessed sexual discrimination, women answered never at 47%, very infrequently at 30%, quarterly at 9%, monthly at 7%, weekly at 5% and daily at 2%. To the same question, men answered never at 65%, very infrequently at 23%, quarterly at 6%, monthly at 2% and weekly at 3% (Tether 2017). These results reveal that men report being witness to less sexual discrimination than women, in every frequency. My hypothesis is that men are witnessing as many situations of sexual discrimination as women, but they might not consider them as such. Finally, the survey asked if the building industry fully accepted the authority of the female architect, to which 60% of respondents answered no (Tether 2017). Still in 2017, the discipline of architecture has a difficulty in dealing with powerful and successful women. Sexism, discrimination and harassment against women in the workplace shows how architecture undermines women and considers them as inferior.Fig.11         Results of the Architectural Review Survey of 2017 on sexual harassment and discrimination2120Another aspect that suggests an inferiorization of women architects in the practice is the way the discipline gives recognition to its members. In my research, I came across a study conducted among students studying biology in College. The study was trying to see if the social environment might explain why a greater number of female students left the program. Following a social network analysis method, the study reveals that men are most likely going to be nominated by their peers than women, as the strongest students of the class. The source of this bias in nomination is due to the tendency of men to overestimate their male colleagues. The results of this study are quite fascinating: “The over-nomination of male peers is commensurate with an overestimation of male grades by 0.57 points on a 4 point grade scale, indicating a strong male bias among males when assessing their classmates. Females, in contrast, nominated equitably based on student performance rather than gender, suggesting they lacked gender biases in filling out these surveys”(Grunspan 2016).  The researchers are clear: men carry a strong pro-men bias. This is exactly how boy’s club are formed and maintained. The same tendency of men to over celebrate their successes among themselves can be found in the distribution of the most prestigious architecture prize. The correlation is simple, the more we move up in the profession, the fewer women there are, and those who make it are subject to particular sexism. Despina Stratigakos highlights the treatment reserved by the press to Zaha Hadid after she received the Pritzer Prize in 2014 and became the first women to ever receive this award (Stratigakos 2016, 50). Commenting on the press cover of Zaha Hadid’s Pritzer Prize, Stratigakos notices: “ Highly unusual for such coverage, however, were the less complimentary personal references, such as to Hadid’s reputation for being “difficult” and a “diva,” suggesting a female excess and instability of emotion”(Stratigakos 2016, 50). Although Hadid was awarded with the most prestigious prize of the profession, the architectural community seemed to doubt she deserved such honour, on the bias of her gender. In 1991, the Pritzker Prize was awarded to Robert Venturi only, refusing to recognize the true value of Denise Scot Brown’s contribution in their collaborative work.  This created a big controversy and gave light to the long-lasting Scott Brown’s denunciation of sexism in architecture (Stratigakos 2016, 54). These two examples reveal an “uncomfortable effort to position [them] in relation to the masculine mold of the star architect” (Stratigakos 2016, 55).Through the history of the Pritzker Prize, only 2 out of 39 (5%) were awarded to women: Zaha Hadid in 2004 and Kazuyo Sejima in 2010, alongside her male partner Ryue Nishizawa (Chikako Chang 2014). A survey done by ACSA (Association of Collegiate Schools of Architecture) revealed that between 2010 to 2014, men architects have received 82% of worldwide and American top awards, while women received only 18% (Chikako Chang 2014). These numbers reveal how difficult it is for women to break the glass ceiling.Based on the experience of women in architecture school, collected in the discussion groups, and in the architecture workplace, collected from the Architectural review survey, it is clear that men are still favored in architecture. No surprise then, that the discipline remains quiet on issues concerning gender inequality. Rewriting the culture of the discipline and making room for women to accomplish and celebrate their full potential would then allow for architecture to be an agent for change towards gender equality in our society.2322Gender Equality in ArchitectureArchitecture Profession - Interview wih ProfessionalsDrawing on a series of interviews conducted with architects, urban planners and landscape architects from Vancouver, I am trying to understand the architecture discipline’s attitude towards gender issues. In particular, I’m exploring the relationship between gender equality workplace practices and the architectural product. I observed that while many are well aware and sensitive to the question of gender equality, especially in the workplace of architecture and understand how gender influence life experience, very few reported considering aspects of gender relations in the process of an architectural project. When trying to make the move from workplace awareness to design practice, the bridge is missing. So far, there is little signs of transfer of knowledge and awareness from one to another. When discussing the professional workforce and the demography of architecture, gender is in every mouth and mind, but when it comes to designing a building, in a given context, with a specific program, gender is absent, invisible, neutral. The users are un-gendered.I also noted that most interviewees understood the importance of diversity in the workplace to represent the diverse voices of our society. To most of them, having more women architects was important in order to represent the female perspective in their work. This notion comes in contradiction with the gender-neutral approach and it really reveals the level of complexity that is found in the relationship between workplace practice and the architecture end product.There was a total of 20 semi-structured interviews that was conducted with both men and women architects, with a majority of women. The research sample is quite diverse and includes retired architects, firm associates, firm partners, intern architects, foreign architects who were trained outside of Canada and immigrated and architects from ethnic minorities. Some worked as consultant or free-lance or in a part-time position. Some were single, married, parent or not parent.When it comes to discussing about the existing barriers for women in architecture, the discussion inevitably turns towards family. Women are more impacted by the length of the registration process because it might interfere with other aspects of life, such as pregnancy and childbearing.In architecture, the nature of the work is often seen as incompatible with the project of raising a family. Working long hours and sacrificing social life, hobbies and sleep hours is a culture that is taught in architecture school and pursuit in the workplace. A lot of interviewees mentioned the great challenge of getting a part-time position, due to the service nature of the work, one needs to be available to their clients on a full-time basis. In a society where women are more often the care takers, of children or elderly, this consists of a major barrier. One interviewee told me her story after 12 years working in a firm, giving up on running architecture projects and transferring to a managing position, because that was the only position she could work part-time. She wanted to get a part-time position after her maternity leave. Years later, she feels strong about what happened to her career: “I had to make a choice, and it splits me in two and that doesn’t happen to men and that’s really unfair, I don’t think men would contemplate scarifying 12 years of work, they never have to confront that question.” (Participant #3, 2017)Architecture works in the construction industry, along with engineering and construction, two fields that are still highly male dominated. I have interviewed a lot of women who explained how the nature of their work placed them to be a minority most times, in meetings, in construction sites. They recall that being the only women, or the only few, is uncomfortable, makes it harder to network and exposes you to sexist behavior. One of the interviewee mentioned a sell pitch she did with a collegue to a client a few month back. Although she presented and it was based on her expertise and her portfolio, the client solely directed his question to her male colleague and ignore her, leaving her very frustrated to not be recognised. As she told me: “The problems aren’t easily resolve inside the walls of the office. The great majority of our clients are men and we work with clients that are extremely sexist.” (Participant #8, 2017)Another story is when an interviewee was at a project meeting with the engineers and consultant and she is the only women. Her colleague decides to make a joke based on her title as Leed Accredited Professional, that create the acronyme LAP and called her a lap dancer in the meeting room. Humiliated, she report the incident to her supervisor and felt frustrated how her colleague could get away with no consequences so easily. (Participant #9, 2017)The point that I would like to make is that what is revealing about those anecdotal stories of casual sexism, humiliation and harassment is that there are so many. The anecdote is revealing of the workplace The following text is the script of a lecture given at the DEARQ International Symposium: Women in Architecture, at the University de Los Andes, in Bogota, Colombia in October 2017.2524culture.Overall, I have observed a true wiliness to talk about the issue of women in the workplace, a desire to improve the situation and take down the barriers that still maintain the discrepancy, and, at different levels, an understanding of what those barriers are. Many recall taking concrete actions, at the personal level or at the business managing level to play their part in this challenge.Some firms purposely tried to hire more women, some firm have established a pay grid with a fix salary based on the position and the years of experience to avoid gender wage gap. There is also actions to accommodate families such as flexible hours and giving the option of working part-time.At the individual level, many mentioned the importance of mentors and role models. Also, many mentioned their effort to be verbal about these issues whenever they can and to try to realise their personal biases. An interviewee express the effort he constantly tries to make in the process of educating himself: “For me it is something that you always have to make effort to remember that it’s there, because it is easy to forget. I don’t know what it’s like to walk down the dark alley and just be scared and I don’t know what it’s like to be objectified in quite the same constant way and I don’t know how it is to operate in a professional world being a women in a table full of men. I have to make sure I am cognisant of it.” (Participant #13, 2017) Gender equality workplace practice were well covered in the interviews. With the intention of understanding how this impacts their production of architecture, I question the participants as to know if they consider issues of gender in their design process. How are these efforts towards a more gender-equal discipline changing the nature of the practice? I found out there was not a lot of recognition for gender and a very poor manifestation of any gender-focus design approach. This is to me the most interesting outcome of the research. While I observed that many are well aware and sensitive to the question of gender equality and demonstrate a strong everyday gender awareness in their place of work, I could observe that this awareness did not translate into their design methodology. As an interviewee told me, this question that I am asking is not often spoken about:“People ask you, can architects do better at gender equality in architecture, but that question: can the act of building a building or a city, can that contribute towards better gender equality? – I can honestly tell you I have never been asked that and I’m not sure that I have an answer because I don’t think I’ve ever applied myself to deliberating over that question, that’s a huge question.”  (Participant #3, 2017)She pursued her reflection and admitted her practice adopted a non-bias response to their occupancy: “we don’t tempt to gender our occupant” she told. She defined it as an ungender respond to their building occupants. I received similar answers from many interviewees. Some were a bit surprised by my question: No, they do not consider the gender of their building’s occupant. And many specifically used expressions such as “gender-neutral” “non-bias approach” “ungendered approach”. (Participant #9, 10,14, 2017)Here is why the gender-neutral approach is problematic. I was inspired to believe that architecture has a powerful agency that could impact the balance of gender inequality when I understood the social construction of space and how that is closely tied to our social identities. Architectural educator Leslie Kanes Weisman makes the argument in her book discrimination by design, that the built environment produces gender dichotomy. Our everyday life in the man-made environment is filled with cultural and social assumptions and our built environment shapes human relations (Weisman 1992, 9). As she writes: “We simply do not understand who we are until we know where we are. This understanding is not the same for everyone. In societies where gender roles, race, and class are strongly differentiated, women and men, black and white, rich and poor will adopt different values and attitudes towards the environment and will experience and perceive the environment in different ways… In patriarchal societies where men are by definition the dominant group, social, physical, and metaphysical space are the products of male experience, male consciousness, and male control. Further, man-made space encodes and perpetuates white male power and superiority and the inferiority and subordination of women and minorities” (Weisman 1992, 9-10)In our society the white western heterosexual able bodied man is the dominating voice. Being a white male is the norm, the situation by default. In that regard, a gender-neutral approach will adopt the perspective of the gender that is perceived as neutral: the male gender. Gender-neutral approach is simply a single-sexed approach without identified as such.If our built environment can promote male domination, surely it can do the opposite. Architecture can generate cultural agency that is tangible and material. It is a cultural production that is quite powerful. Architects have the authority to challenge the establish order and offer a spatial implication in the pursuit of social changes. But for 2726that, we need to apply a critical perspective, we need to educate ourselves and make ourselves aware of the social and gender dynamics that surrounds us. Despite the fact a lot of interviewee were unable to give instances of projects where gender relations were brought to the table, there was many interviews where we discussed the notion of diverse perspectives and the importance of diversity in design teams. As one interviewee pointed out: “Everyone uses architecture, you need the diversity of experience.” (Participant #6, 2017)Is there a direct link between a more diverse design team and the ability of architecture to be impactful for gender equality in our society? To a architect interviewed, it is our responsibility, in order to bring the appropriate architectural respond:“We focus on community-oriented work and so we are designing for the diversity in the community, if we are not a diverse office, how can we understand diversity right? It has to start from here, it has to start from within. I think we have a responsibility, I believe that no matter what kind of work we did, but because we do a lot of public buildings, community buildings, recreational buildings, it becomes even more of an imperative to make sure that we are reflecting, that we can relate that we are living those values you know. We embed those values in our work, we have to make sure those values are equally embedded in our firm. We don’t get it perfect, but I believe that we live that fairly truthfully most of the time.”  (Participant #7)Other interviewees mentioned their experience as women or as parent made them see a project differently and voice their point of view through the design process. One told me starting to plan for stroller parkings in public building after having her first child, never realizing before the need for such a space.  Another female interviewee told me about the time where she was the only women in the design team for a public facility project. When looking at the entrance that they had designed, she pointed out to her team how they were creating a space that is going to feel very unsafe for women at night. She pursuit her story as “My coworkers took my comment and admitted that they haven’t considered that. As a woman who experiences a different geography than men at night time, I intuitively saw that.” (Participant #8, 2017)This is where I note a contradiction in the practice towards gender. How can we, on the one hand, acknowledge the different experience of life affected by the social construction of race, gender, class and still on the other hand consciously apply a gender-blind approach to the design of buildings?My argument is that seeking gender equality and diversity in architecture is simply not enough for the discipline to play a role towards gender equality. Architects need to educate themselves on gender issues. I would argue that representing the plularities of perspectives in the practice is a step in the right direction, but it is not enough unless paired with a feminist alternative to the gender-neutral approach.The discipline needs to invest energy into learning how to respond to the diversity of perspectives. As pointed out by an interviewee, the discipline right now focuses significantly more on the engineering side of buildings and should develop its social knowledge: “On any given week I’ll spend an hour learning about a new paint type or dry wall or some carpet, something. It is substantially less time that we spend discussing what it means to be female or male or able body or young or old.” (Participant #17, 2017)2928Gender Equality in ArchitectureArchitecture Profession - Interview extractsThe following selection of interview extracts, that serves as the material for the previous lecture script, focuses on the consideration of gender in the process of architectural projects as well as on the understanding of architecture’s possible role in achieving gender equality. While most interviews covered largely the topic of women in the workplace of architecture, the most interesting outcome of this interview series reside in this reflection of producing architecture to advance gender equality.Participant #3: Women, Architect, Vancouver, BC.O.D.D: I am interested in hearing your vision of the profession and the challenges of achieving gender equality in the profession. I am also interested in how issues of gender equality are incorporated in your practice of architecture?P.3: I think the profession struggles with gender equality and I think there are reasons for it that are very self-evident. The next question you have for me, and to me that is the very interesting question that you are asking, is can architecture contribute to better gender equality. That’s a very scary question. First of all, nobody has ever asked me that as an architect. People ask you, can architects do better at gender equality in architecture, but that question, can the act of building a building or a city or an environment or an interior contribute towards better gender equality? I can honestly tell you I have never been asked that and I’m not certain that I have an answer because I don’t think I’ve ever applied myself to deliberating over that question. That’s a huge question. I can talk about us as architects, as a profession, I have a lot of experience and I’ve had a lot of barriers, but to move from that…through what we do can we make it better? I’m wondering how the creation of space…we design space, we design neighborhoods, we design buildings, we design cities, can we affect gender equality in a tangible way? My gut tells me I want to say yes, but then the next thing I want to say is: so tell me how.When I think about the work that we do, and I consider the office to be fairly [progressive], we work hard to be smart, we want to make a difference, we are very cognizant of society. But I’m not certain this office ever asked ourselves when we undertake a project, and we are always trying to say: can we make the best environment for those inhabitants? Is it the healthiest? Is it the most sustainable? Have I ever asked myself rather if this building is going to do something to change the [gender] balance in this society? I don’t think we never asked ourselves that question and I consider we are pretty forward thinking. That disturbs me a bit. But there is something for you in itself, is the fact that I don’t recall a discussion or a critique where we said: “will this building make the lives of women better?” To be full frontal I can’t remember discussions around that. We try to make it better for whoever is in the building, whoever touches the building at the community scale, and what the building can do to improve the community. We have a non-bias response to our occupants, we don’t tempt to gender our occupants or our users. We spend a lot of time trying to understand how to make the healthiest and most positive environment. I guess it’s an ungendered response to the building occupants, is that surprising to you?O.D.D: Yes and no, I do feel that our education in architecture doesn’t equip us with tools to properly address questions of gender relations. Because of the complexity of those issues, they end up being disregarded in architecture projects most times. For example, last semester I took part in a design studio that looked at the social challenges of boomtowns in Northern BC. While there are many economic, social, political issues to look at in the phenomenon of boomtowns, the gender disparity in job opportunities and the increase rates of prostitution and violence towards women is one of them, and no students in the studio engaged with those issues in their work. There was, in general, very little recognition of the gender dimension of boomtown phenomenon.P.3: But can I impact that as an architect? The way we work is when a client comes to us with a program and a budget. We don’t have a lot of say in what the client’s program is, our job is to do the best that we can, so what the economic dynamic are in a small community and the disparity between opportunities for men and opportunities for women, I can’t directly impact that if my client asks me for an 3130accommodation building or a fire hall or gymnasium or a town centre. I don’t know how we can address the economy and the potential for women at the community level through our commission. I can try to build very safe and secure space. One of the early projects we did was a laboratory for medical testing. Our understanding was that the population of the building was 90% women and they work seven days a week and the laboratory is open 24 hours a day. Given the location of the building and the fact that it is a female population predominantly, we wanted to make sure that the environment was safe so when the women finish their shift, they went down the underground parking and everything was glazed, everything was open, you could see down. We attacked the building from a total safety perspective. So, I can understand how you can make a building that is going to be a better environment for women. But can I impact the outcome of women at the broader level when it’s not directly people working or residing in the building? I’m not certain.Participant #13: Man, Architect, Vancouver, BCO.D.D: In your practice, are aspects of gender ever considered, explicitly or not, in the design process?P.13: We have been lobbying for genderless washrooms for years. Interestingly we do not think of it in terms of gender, it’s more about thinking of it in terms of family and accessibility. We are more interested in family being able to go together so it’s not about creating equality, it’s about creating convenience for families. It only involves with gender as a second order consequence. The other advantage of genderless washrooms or universal changing rooms is for gender-fluid people, who are given access to these spaces. So it’s not about that binary understanding of gender. The universal change room is a specific and practical example of how gender is considered in our design project. That is probably the most obvious place where we run into issues dealing with gender. The rest of it matters a little bit less. We don’t think about gender as it relates to let’s say the building entry or the kitchen or the living room or anything else. In that respect we just try to be good designers who make good design.O.D.D: Do you think architecture has a role to play in achieving gender equality?P.13: I actually think architecture agency is fairly limited. I think there are things that architecture can do and things that it can’t. In many ways architecture is both a response to and a catalyst for other things. If a client wants to build a particular building, the architect doesn’t get to choose. Can it affect [gender equality]? Yes but I think it’s limited. Interestingly, I think the most significant changes that architecture might be able to affect are at the level of the profession; so gender equality in the workplace, advocating for better support for professional life, such as improving childcare, for example. Something architecture doesn’t do a lot is to agitate publicly for things. One of the advantages of being a professional, such as a lawyer, an architect, and an engineer is that there is a degree of public respect conferred on you because you are part of that profession. When you speak up as an expert, you are received with more credibility. So if architects stood up with a number of other professionals and advocate for accessible childcare for example, it could have an impact and affect more broadly than just the profession of architecture itself.Can it affect the world through its instruments of service? By which I mean the drawings. Yes, I believe so. Drawings, the way we represent things, can matter. Architecture makes images and presents them to the world. They are speculative representations of how 3332we imagine what the world might be. When you make a rendering, how do you choose the people you insert in? What do they look like and what are they doing? For example, a rendering of a project in Chinatown where everybody in the rendering is white, that would strike me as a problem. How do you choose what the women in that form of representation are doing? Are they pushing a stroller or are they professionals carrying a briefcase? That’s a small thing, but in the aggregate, across the continent, it can impact the public perception. You can maybe make drawings that suggest a model of women that are fiercely independent. I think those kinds of instruments of services are powerful within the field in which they are presented. If we present to the world renders where women and men are represented as equal that might be a form of contribution.So there is the profession, there is the way we represent things and there is the built artefact. In terms of the built artefact, that is probably the least tied to gender equality. Once you move beyond universal accessibility, it’s just about making pleasant, beautiful and comfortable space.O.D.D: But you mentioned that even if you have built a certain awareness, as a man you can’t fully appreciate what it’s like for a woman to be objectified or to feel unsafe and vulnerable in a space at night, how does your design work takes that into consideration?Thinking about safety for women specifically, we wouldn’t think about that relative to gender actually, that would just fall under trying to do good design and try not to create blind spots where people can hide. It might have more to do with operation management. For example, in the case of a community centre, it’s about being able to understand how the front desk could be able to easily survey a community centre entry.Participant # 8: Women,  Urban Planner, Vancouver, BC.O.D.D: In your practice and in the way that you conduct projects, do you have examples of how you consider gender specifically?P.8: I’m just only starting to give some thoughts and reading and researching on how cities can be designed for women. I think for me a lot of the work I do is embedded in the public process. All of my projects are usually public sector clients and all of them involve an incredible amount of public engagement. For me the way I can ensure that my outcomes, my designs, are more inclusive, not just of women but other voices as well, indigenous people, other minorities, new comers, youth, seniors, is by assuring that the process is inclusive. Those voices are around the table and presumably the outcome is reflecting the aspirations, the priorities, the concerns of women and other people. I think the process is important but I also think that at the end of the day, on the design team, you need to have women. I talked to a colleague and she told me that she was working on designing a public facility, and she was the only women of the design team and they were designing the entrance and the interface with the public realm and when looking at it she points out the team how they were creating a space that is going to feel very unsafe for women at night time. And the male designers took her comment and admitted that they haven’t considered that. As a woman who experiences a different geography than men at night time, she intuitively saw that. So, I think that in addition to engaging women in a process as public participants, you also need women around the table, doing the design, it’s going to make the design better and more inclusive.O.D.D: In the public engagement process, how do you manage for it to be inclusive, considering that some social groups might have the tendency to voice themselves more than others?P.8: Traditionally, you would find the town hall format, where you would have an event with some consultant talking in the front and an audience where the public get a chance to react and usually you get a few voices who dominate the conversation, and it is more often than not men, white older men, because they are the centred voice in our society. It is important in a public engagement process to provide diverse opportunities to engage, including for people to do it on their own terms and in a quiet way. Whenever I do an engagement I always do things like an online survey or mobile booth.We just recently did a two-day design charrette, in partnership with [the town and the first nation community of that specific project]. It was a process 3534designed to strengthen their relationship and recognizing the history of colonization. We designed the process in a way to decentralize the power of the one who is holding the pen. So you got the designer, the expert with the pen and trace paper and even if it is facilitating, it still creates a dynamic that is one of power. What we did is we had a series of large maps and we put on the tables stuff like plasticine, scissors, papers, and diverse materials, for people to add their ideas in a very accessible way and it was great. This exercise worked really well because everyone could do it, and I guess that’s not gender specific but it’s removing the power from the person who holds the pen. It was an interesting technic and it really worked well and we got an outcome that we felt was really reflected the perspective of diverse participants.O.D.D: What is your understanding of the role of urban planning in gender equality? How do you measure the impact that it could have on gender equality?P.8: That’s a great question, I don’t know… When I think about the way I would measure the impact of my planning on stuff like climate change, for example when we develop a community plan… On a recent project, we developed three different gross scenarios for them, to help us prepare the plan to present to the community and we develop a series of metrics and measures to see: if we focus most people in the city centre, this is what the greenhouse gas emission profile would look like. If we focus them around neighborhood nodes, this is what it would look like. If we continue to grow and sprawl, this is what it is going to look like. We had a series of measure to make these estimations. We didn’t look at gender, but I imagine there must be some measures that we could model as well around that, but it would require that we probably dive into the research a little bit to figure out what are those measures. We always apply CPTED, crime prevention through environmental design. We always apply those principles to our urban design guidelines on all of our plans, so that is for sure important for gender equality in terms of the geography of gender at night time. But I don’t think I ever explicitly measured the impact of a plan on gender, that’s interesting.Participant #7: Man, Architect, Vancouver, BC.O.D.D: Do you see a benefit for the firm and the work that you do to have a great diversity in your team?P.7: Oh absolutely, we focus on community-oriented work and so we are designing for the diversity in the community, if we are not a diverse office, how can we understand diversity right? It has to start from here, it has to start from within. I think we have a responsibility, I believe that no matter what kind of work we did, but because we do a lot of public buildings, community buildings, recreational buildings, it becomes even more of an imperative to make sure that we are reflecting, that we can relate that we are living those values you know. We embed those values in our work, we have to make sure those values are equally embedded in our firm. We don’t get it perfect, but I believe that we live that fairly truthfully most of the time. It’s something that I’m very proud of.We recently went through a social justice self-reporting program. It’s a program for businesses to report out and make commitments around social justice issues. We wanted to see how we were doing against these criteria, that’s when I had to look at our data in terms of the percentage of women and minorities in the office, but also look at pay equity. Pay equity is another part, it’s not enough just to have diversity in a firm, are you paying people fairly? I was very pleased when I did the calculation and looked at people in the same position, similar experience, where did that stand from a pay equity stand point, the calculation confirm that we certainly are equitable. I believe we pay equitably, I believe we are gender blind when we are hiring and when we promote.O.D.D: How do you manage to have pay equity?P.7: We have established a pay grid that is based on positions and years of experience. We have established a baseline grid and then we position people against that grid based on their performance and I think it made it far more equitable and transparent and I think it’s really good from a personal development stand point as well and makes it very constructive. O.D.D: Do you think that perhaps you are attracting more women to apply for a job at the firm because of the fact that you have established a working culture of gender equality?P.7: I think so, and I think it is a great advantage for us. I do think that words get out that we are an equitable employer and I believe we attract better people for that.3736We really believe in it. We have a model here that is maximizing our social impact in all aspects of our practice. If we are looking at how we manage our firm from the people stand point or how we manage our processes with the community, such as public engagement or how the design strategies that we utilize, you can’t separate one from the other so having an equitable work environment is just part of our broader strategies of trying to be doing a better job from a social standpoint in our community, so we have to live it first. I don’t think there is any coincidence or surprise that we care deeply on the impact we are having in the community while we are trying to be as equal as we can internally as well, it’s just a philosophical position.O.D.D: How does that goal of socially making a difference in the community impacts your design process and what are the results that you get?P.7: It’s a challenge. When you make the commitment of improving the performance of your building from a social standpoint, those are very difficult things to measure, you need to look at the social sciences, and you need to look at much more complex ways of understanding community capacity. Things that really aren’t in the normal ability that architect grasp or manage. So we have been looking at different ways of structuring the conversation for us. We’ve developed our own social impact framework that allows us to look at the work from three standpoints. One from the principles, so we’ve established a principle base which gives us a research base for that and then we look at our processes rather it be our design processes, how we involve the community, you can affect things such as governance structure on a project, post-occupancy evaluation and how we work with the building. So there are the principles, the processes and the product, this is the third category which is about the actual design strategies that we utilize. Now, how do you measure community capacity? I know that there are social science disciplines that know how to do that, but we don’t and we don’t know how to do it in a timely enough fashion to actually impact our work. We have been trying to find different ways of having that conversation and it’s still involving but I don’t think that we have got it to a sophisticated enough level yet.3938Part IIIf your Pap Test could Speak, What would it Say?IntroductionA year separated the first part to the second part of the thesis project. After mostly focusing on gender equality in the workplace and in the architectural education, the project was reoriented towards a more design driven topic. Interested in the intersection between gender and sexuality, and inspired by the reading of Lori A. Brown’s (2013) book Contested Spaces: Abortion Clinics, Women’s Shelters and Hospitals, I became interested in sexual health care. Brown’s work on abortion clinics revealed the potential of such space. In her book, she explains her objective clearly: «As a feminist architect, I seek intersections between architecture and the political in order to provoke change both out in the world and within my own discipline. This book emerged from the desire for architecture to be political, something it is not good at being, and to deal with issues that are inherently politicized within our contemporary culture.» (Brown 2013, 1)In the broad scope of sexual health care, my project landed on the specific practice of gynecological yearly check-up exams. By siting the project in the space of the gynecological exam room, the ambition is to consider the wide range of influences that shape directly or indirectly these spaces and provide the practice of architecture with a methodology that deepens and broadens our understanding of the values embedded in our built environment.There are several reasons for focusing on the gynecological exam room. Women, once sexually active, are recommended to visit the doctor for a check-up once a year (Canadian Cancer Society, 2018). This practice is broadly accepted and remains mostly unquestioned. The fact that it is a yearly event in the life of every woman indicates how the practice of gynecology operates as a form of control over women’s body and women’s sexuality. Take contraception, for example. Women need a prescription for hormonal contraception,  whether it is oral, IUD, the vaginal ring or the patch. They, further, need an annual check-up for their prescription renewal. This is something men do not experience. In fact, there exist no hormonal contraception for men.Modern medicine threats even perfectly healthy women and their sexualities as being in need of 4140regular check-ups.  As such, women’s sexuality is performed in the exam room.Again, this is a reality unknown for men. Indeed, women go to the doctor more than men. In Canada, 67.4% of men between 20-34 years old sees a doctor at least yearly, for 79,7% of women of the same age group. Between 35 to 44 years old, its 77% of men and 88% of women (Statistics Canada, 2016). A study further reveals that among those who go to the doctor only 14% of male discuss sexual health with their physician during a routine check-up while 64% of women patients do the same (Blumgart, 2012).  Concerning STI testing, in the province of Quebec for instance, only 26% of men between 17 to 25 years old have been tested for STI compared to 57% of women (Institut National de Sante Publique du Quebec, 2017). The technique for STI testing has improved over the years and are becoming less and less intrusive. While most STI testing for men are conducted by blood sampling or urinal sampling, the most common technique for women remains a vaginal swab test executed by the physician. As Blumgart argues, such disparity “reinforces the idea that men don’t have to worry, that it’s a woman’s issue,”(Blumgart, 2012) Women are held disproportionately responsible as their sexuality is over medicalised and, yet, there is a lack of attention to their wellbeing and their ownership of their sexual life. The practice of gynecology is also ruled by patriarchal values. Historically, gynecology is a discipline based on masculine domination, the perpetuation of violence towards women and the disrespect of their consent. J. Marion Sims, so called the father of gynecology, provided significant advancement in the field by practicing surgery on black women slaves without anesthesia (Wikipedia, 2018).With this background in mind, the goal of this thesis project is to demonstrate through design how patriarchy operates within the practice and the space of gynecological check-up examsExploring a Feminist Critical Spatial PracticeThe patriarchal interests in sexual health careSited in the normative condition of contemporary practice of medecin in CanadaGynecological examGynecological examConsultationPrescription or prescription renewalRoutine Breast examPap test (cancer)Pelvic ExamRecto-vaginal examSwab testing (STI)Urinal sample (STI)Blood sample (STI)IUD installationHIV prevention treatment Hormonal treatmentSTI testing STI treatment Gynecological emergencyAbortion Counselling Sex trade and sex workContraception Fertility treatment childbirth and pregnancySurgical intervention Sexual trauma therapy Pelvic PhysiotherapyTable 1 Project’s site diagram4342Precedents StudyWomen on waves is an organisation from the Netherlands that has put together a mobile abortion clinic on a boat. The boat travels around the world to countries with legal restrictions on abortion and uses the international water law to provide medical abortion to women (Brown 2013, 80) (Women on Waves, n.d.). The boat is a strong landmark, and the mobility of the clinic is what is interesting in this precedent. Its mobility is what defines its accessibility and makes it able to reach different populations and adapt their actions to the specific needs of locals. (Brown 2013, 80) (Women on Waves, n.d.).Women on WavesPro-choice medical organisationThe NetherlandsDr Rebecca Gomperts11/01/2018 Contested Spaces: Abortion Clinics, Women's Shelters and Hospitals | Politicizing the Female Body | Taylor & Francis Grouphttps://www.taylorfrancis.com/books/9781317160335 1/111/01/2018 Contested Spaces: Abortion Clinics, Women's Shelters and Hospitals | Politicizing the Female Body | Taylor & Francis Grouphttps://www.taylorfrancis.com/books/9781317160335 1/1Fig.12         Women on Waves’ boatFig.13         Women on Waves’ boat at pierFig.14         Women on Waves’ boat, inside exam room4544Precedents StudyThis set of objects were designed for women who suffer from trauma-induced sexual problems, such as pelvic muscle blockage. The project critiques a strictly clinical approach to sexual health that solely focuses on its physical aspects and neglects its psychological aspects. It presents an alternative approach through a set of five objects that invites women to discover their sexual pleasure: to discover what feels good, relieve fear and pain and gaining a sense of security about their bodies. (Trinidad, 2017)What is notable in this project is the understanding of therapy and healing as a political act. The design proposal is at great distance from a clinical approach to healing. Finally, the combination of colors, textures and shapes makes the project particularly evocative.Sexual HealingNienke HelderDutch Design Week, 2017Fig.15         Sexual healing object seriesFig.16         Sexual healing hair brushFig.17         Sexual healing biofeedback objectsFig.18         Sexual healing biofeedback object4746Precedents StudyThis project is meant to challenge heteronormativity in home building by designing a fictive dwelling that facilitate domestic violence. The ‘abuser’s  apartment’, is based on statistics of gendered domestic violence  and represent a translation of quantitative information into physical space. A home designed in favor of the abuser highlights the non-neutrality of space and the power of spatial and architectural arrangement (ArkDes 2017, 18). This critical project is provocative and puts together a convincing argument for the enrollment of design in structures of power.AbNormCamilla AnderssonStockholm, 2005Fig.19         The Abuser’s Apartment, Section View4948Precedents StudyThe Androchair is a conceptual design for prostate examination, designed on the basis of how women experience the gynecologist chair. Therefore, it is designed in order to be cold, hard, rickety, high and position the patient to the benefit of the doctor, at the expense of the patient’s comfort.  The Androchair also highlights the absence of regular examination for men (ArkDes 2017, 20). This is among the most influential precedents for the thesis, notable for its critical view of gynecology and gynecological violence, investigated at the furniture level. The statement is made clear by shifting one element of the original context, in this case, the user’s gender.AndrochairEmma Borjesson, Karin Ehrnberger, Ann-Cristine Hertz and Cristine Sundbom.Stockholm, 2014Fig.20         The Androchair Project5150Existing Conditions AnalysisUniversity Village Medical ClinicAllison Road,UBC CampusLocated on the second floor of a commercial complex, this walk-in clinic is adjacent to a gym and a dentist’s office. The front desk is the first thing one sees when entering the clinic. Facing the waiting room and the entry, it serves as a border between the patient’s space and the doctor’s space. A patient will never trespass that limit unless escorted by a doctor. There is a series of identical or similar exam rooms, organized around a dead end corridor, which restrains patient’s movement in the clinic. The acoustic of the waiting room doesn’t allow for privacy. The conversation between staff at the front desk is being projected into the waiting room.GOLD’S GYMPatient DoctorReceptionistPatientWatched and monitored Escorted at all timeDoctorWindows closed with blinds in exam rooms Organized around corridorReceptionistDENTIST OFFICEUNIVERSITY VILLAGE MEDICAL CLINIC, ALLISON ROADUBC CAMPUSFig.21         University Village Medical Clinic, Allison Road, UBC Campus5352Existing Conditions AnalysisThe walk-in clinic University Village Medical Clinic recently opened on Birney Street, Westbrook Village, in late 2017. It is located in a standard rental street front commercial space, on the ground floor of a condominium development. Its characteristics are the tall ceiling with exposed ventilation system, the exposed structural columns and the layout of the space around a loop. The U shape front desk gives visual access to the waiting area, the entry door and the washrooms. The loop circulation allows patients to walk more freely although the front desk serves as surveillance to prevent that. The exam rooms have no windows and poor acoustic insolation.University Village Medical ClinicBirney Street,Westbrook VillageNo window in exam rooms PatientPatientDoctorStreetfront Commercial typologyUNIVERSITY VILLAGE MEDICAL CLINIC, BIRNEY STREETWESTBROOK VILLAGEFig.22         University Village Medical Clinic, Birney Street, Westbrook Village5554Existing Conditions AnalysisThis small health care clinic is located in a commercial street front space. What is notable at first is the proximity of the entry door, the check-in desk and the waiting room. New patients entering are immediately taking in charge by staff at the reception desk. The proximity to the waiting room doesn’t allow for any acoustic boundary and conversation at the reception desk are projected to the others in the space. Again, a series of standard exam room are laid out around a dead end corridor. The arrangement of the space identifies clearly a patient’s zone and a doctor’s zone, not to be trespassed. Once again, the clinic is on a single floor.First Care Medical ClinicCommercial DriveWALK-IN CLINICNo window in exam rooms BUBBLE TEA HOUSEBUBBLE TEA HOUSEPatientOrganized around corridorReceptionistStreetfront Commercial typologyFIRST CARE MEDICAL CLINICCOMMERCIAL DRIVEFig.23         First Care Medical Clinic, Commercial Drive5756Existing Conditions AnalysisGiven the difficulty of visiting a sexual health clinic due to overbooking, this precedent from Oakland, California fills the gap. This specific clinic provide, among other things, sexual health care for youth. Located on the second floor, the clinic opens up to visitors with a reception desk and a small waiting room. Here, the space ratio between the patient’s zone and the doctor’s zone is significantly larger than previous precedents. In this case, the exam rooms are not organized around a dead-end corridor but the staff ’s POD, with nurses and doctors’ offices, files and various office equipment. In this case, doctors and clinic staff are exposed and centralized around the circulation spaces.A General Practice ClinicOakland,CaliforniaPatientDoctorClinic on second oor of multi-use buildingOrganized around sta’s PODASIAN HEALTH SERVICESOAKLAND, CALIFORNIAFig.24         A General Practice Clinic, Oakland, California5958Analysis DiagramsThe collected material of the existing clinics analysis was compiled together to define the average condition and form the characteristic of the generic site. At this point of the project, the site is narrowed down to the exam room, with an average of 8.75 sqm, width of 2,5m and length of 3,5m. The architecture of the exam room consist of suspended ceilings with bright lights, standard dry wall division, no openings or blinded openings, an exam chair, a chair for the doctor, one or two for patients, a counter and a sink. Other conditions such as the relation to the street, the total square footage of the clinic and the width-length ratio of the clinic were put aside given the focus on exam room as the site of the project.Fig.25         Standard Exam Room from University Village Clinic, Birney StFig.26         Standard Exam Room, sink counterFig.27         Standard Exam Room, Exam Chair108 sqft9,3 sqm7,25 sqm75 sqft6,0 sqm64 sqft5,5 sqm54 sqft100 sqft9,2 sqm120 sqft11 sqm99 sqft9,2 sqm254 sqm1 storey height2734 sqft8,2 sqm88,2 sqft174 sqm1872 sqft3111 2 1,21109,4 sqm1177 sqft532 sqm5726 sqft10 exam rooms5 exam rooms 5 exam rooms 15 exam roomsWALK-IN CLINIC1 storey height1 storey heightFig.28         Compilation of the observed existing conditions to determine conditions of generic site6160Analysis DiagramsThis diagram combines the three elements of the patient’s identity that will affect the needs in terms of sexual health care check-up exam. The diversity of gender identities are positioned inside a grid formed by a masculine axis and the feminine axis. Overlaid are representations of sexual organs and hormones linked together in various scenarios to represent the possibilities in terms of body parts ownership. The third element is the sexual behavior and history. Symbols laid in a row represent the aspect of one’s sexual life that might inform a particular need for a check-up exam. For example, the use or not of contraception, the numbers of partners, the risk or not of pregnancy, the use of drugs, etc. Ownership of sexual organs combined with gender identity and sexual behavior reveal how a single approach to exam procedure is inadequate. For example, a trans-man might still need a Pap test if owning a cervix, a heterosexual woman might not risk pregnancy if does not own uterus due to previous surgery. A homosexual woman might not need to manage pregnancy risk and a gender fluid individual might necessitate a breast exam and a prostate exam. The diagram demonstrates the abundance of possibilities to site the design intervention in the understanding of gynecological exams and sexual health exam outside of a binary system.Indentity MatrixSelf-identied genderSexual Identity and PracticeBodily ownership of sexual organsFig.29         Identity Matrix6362Analysis DiagramsEfficiency DiagramThe design of the existing clinic is oriented towards the objective of optimized efficiency. Efficiency of time, of space, efficiency for the doctor’s procedure. The diagram shows how different layouts and dimensions of the exam room are designed for the doctor’s optimal circulation and access to the patient or tools, as well as the control of patient’s movement and view in the room, which otherwise could interfere with the procedures. The furniture’s dimension, orientation and placement in the room also serves the purpose of efficiency, as well as the position of the patient in relation to the doctor’s work. The diagram shows graphically the logistic and rational effort that goes into the design of the exam room, with efficiency as main design value.10’ / 3050 mm12’ / 3650 mm11’ / 3350 mm10’ / 3050 mm12’ / 3650 mm10’ / 3050 mm9’ / 2760 mm9’ / 2760 mm1500 mm370 mmPull-out stirrups for lithotomy positionFig.30         Efficiency Diagram6564Analysis DiagramsPatient’s PerspectiveThis drawing evokes the patient’s sensorial perspective of the exam by representing through the cycle of the exam performance the array of smells, sights, touches and feels experienced by a patient. By focusing on the senses, the drawing tempts to reveal the discomfort or anxiety one might experience going through a gynecological exam, given the intimate and personal dimension of what is being examined in the body and identity of the patient.Sight SmellFeelTaking off clothesEntering Exam RoomSwab TestSitting on chairExamination proceduresWipe selfGetting dressedLeaving Exam RoomPap Testchair surface on naked skinThe smell of latex gloves,  lub, metal toolsClosing eyes, anxietyFig.31         Patient’s Perspective Diagram6766Feminist Critical Spatial PracticeIn addition to a design exploration of the exam room, this thesis examines architectural practice and its relation to feminism. It asks: How can architectural practice be feminist? What would be the methodology? The project sits its methodology approach based on the work of architectural historian and theorist Jane Rendell (2006). In her book Art and Architecture: A Place Between, Rendell formulates the term ‘critical spatial practice’. This practice draws on critical theory, developed by theorists associated with the Frankfurt School in the early twentieth century (Rendell 2006, 22).  As Rendell explains: «critical theories aim neither to prove a hypothesis nor prescribe a particular methodology or solution to a problem; instead, in a myriad of ways critical theorists offer self-reflective modes of thought that seek to change the world, or at least the world in which the inequalities of market capitalism, as well as patriarchal and colonial (or post-colonial) interests, continue to dominate» (Rendell 2006, 23). Critical theories carry the particularity of producing a kind of knowledge that enlightens and emancipates readers: «A critical theory, then, is a reflective theory which gives agents a kind of knowledge inherently productive of enlightenment and emancipation» (Rendell 2006, 23. Rendell extends the term to critical spatial practice, based on more recent practices that are «self-critical and desirous of social change.» (Rendell 2006, 23) She further suggests that there is a specific feminist approach to critical spatial practice recognisable through modes of operations such as collectivity, subjectivity, alterity, performativity and materiality (Rendell 2018, 10)The thesis aims at adopting a critical spatial practice in order to unravel the invisible and hidden realities of the exam room as a gendered space. By manipulating the existing conditions through the exercise of different design operations and methodologies, the goal is to, through design, demonstrate how patriarchy operates within the practice and the space of sexual health care.The Exam Room in 5 ExperimentsThe social forces operating in the space of the exam room have been abstracted into 5 distinct experiments, articulated so as to distill the elements of interest that are otherwise too complex and intertwined so that they become blurred and difficult to grasp. Each is designed to function autonomously, forming a particular argument and adopting a specific methodology. Together, they form an extensive body of work that brings to the surface invisible and hidden realities of the exam room as a gendered space. The arrangement of all 5 experiments reveals the high level of subjectivity and complexity inherent to the topic under examination and extracts the potential for complementarities, contradictions, nuances or oppositions among them.Fig.32         Plans of the 5 Experiments6968Primary ArgumentAssembly LineGarden of EdenNegotiating TableElastic RoomInitiationSecondary Argument/contradictionObjective of efficiency Dehuminazing medical gazePatriarchy & capitalismThe logic of efficiency applied to space, time and medical gaze become unefficient for the holistic objectives of medecin.A feminine space as a counterweight to the masculine domination of the medical apparatusThe conventional exam room constructs the doctor as an absolute authority.The exam room as a space to perform and construct gender identities and sexualities.The limitation of possibilities and the ackwardness of the performance.The sensorial experience of the exam room and the role it plays in embodied knowledge transfer.Questioning the materiality of the gynecological examIncreasingly, the language of the patient as the consumer is undermining this authority by making the doctor into a service provider, remaking the exam into a negotiation.Critique of our construction of feminine as the complimentarity of masculine (producing masculine domination) and in disregard to a non-binary gender spectrum.Table 2      Chart of the 5 ExperimentsWhat is at stake?How are  we and how could we be queering sexuality and gender through contemporary architecture?(Performance)Engineering approach to design, standardisation, efficiency as an universal design value. (Mechanical)The design of gendered space.(Gendering)The ability of architecture to mold power relations in particular ways .(Power spaces)Architecture as an educational and culturational tool.(Didactic)MethodologyExaggerationAbsurdityIronySymbolismSpatialising power negotiationsPlayMaterialityDidacticPerformativityKnowledge Production7170Initiation This room is addressed to a recruit, someone who has never experienced a gynecological exam before. It focuses on the sensorial through an exploration by play. There is a passing of knowledge through the architecture; the embodied knowledge or the collective memory of what an exam feels like. By stimulating the senses of the patient, the architecture speaks to whom is listening: “This is how it is, this is how it feels.” The performance of the exam is deployed as a topographic playground, an obstacle course of changes in textures, temperatures and body positions. These changes experienced by the patient allows them to anticipate the feeling of what is coming next in the sequence of the exam and to learn and discover the culture of the gynecological exam. The Initiation uses architecture as a tool for education and culturation. There is a tension in the proposal: what might seems like a playful device for free discovery is actually an imposed strict order where the sensorial feelings are introduced as mandatory: “This is how it is and this is how it feels.”By focusing on the sensorial aspect and present it as something fixed and unnegotiable, it strengthens the reaction and facilitates the reflection: “Is this how it should be? Is this how it should feel?”7372InitiationFig.33         Preliminary SketchInitiationFig.34         Preliminary Sketch7574InitiationFig.35         Preliminary SketchInitiationFig.36         Preliminary Sketch7776InitiationFig.37         Preliminary SketchInitiationFig.38         Preliminary Sketch7978InitiationFig.39         Exploration ModelInitiationFig.40         Exploration Model8180InitiationFig.41         Exploration ModelInitiationFig.42         Exploration Model8382InitiationFig.43         PlanInitiationFig.44         Sections8584Changing into gownAC blowing cold aircold ceramic tilestranslucent glassSilk papergradual slopeMesuring WeightDiforming mirrorElevated platformOversize seatPlaced in the cornerYellow furry coverConsultationElevated seat with back supportBumpy caoutchouc seatBreast ExamEntry and Exit with directed ViewPivot DoorSpiky textured metal oorPaper covered seatMetal stirrupSwap Test: Oral, Anal, VaginalWeavy soft seatLubricated latex seat and oorVaginal Touch ExamMetal covered seat water pipe cooling system Pap TestThe wet and cold feel of the speculumDiscomfort, pain anxietyPrecarious intimacyHarsh feel of gown texture on naked skinFeeling rushed and watchedThe confronting experience of the weight scaleFacing your bodyInitiationFig.45         Plan DiagramInitiationFig.46         Final Model8786Assembly LineEfficiency is the main objective that rules the design of existing clinics. Efficiency of time, efficiency of space, efficiency for the doctor’s procedure in order to facilitate the medical gaze. Efficiency is the reason for waiting rooms, multiple standard exam room replicated along a corridor. Efficiency is also the reason for the lithotomy position and the use of stirrups. In Assembly Line, the idea of efficiency is brought to an extreme, an exaggeration to the point of absurdity. Patients are rolled into an assembly line of chairs carrying them around along the corridor and into the exam rooms. The doctors also have their own assembly line. They don’t have to move at all since tools and patients are coming to them in line.The medical gaze is translated into the space. While the necessary exam procedures are identified by the doctor, the integrated tool distribution system delivers the appropriate disposable tools to the storage compartment of the exam chair. This highly engineered exam chair is made in order to make the patient available for examination in one single move: by pushing the back of the chair down, the stirrups are being lifted up and the tool compartment comes out.Efficiency in health clinics serves for greater accessibility, but to what cost? The Assembly Line critiques efficiency as being a dehumanization process for patients and doctors. It is also a critical reflection on the link between the medical gaze, patriarchy and processes of devalorization under capitalism.8988Assembly LineFig.47         Preliminary SketchAssembly LineFig.48         Preliminary Sketch9190Assembly LineFig.49         Preliminary SketchAssembly LineFig.50         Preliminary Sketch9392Assembly LineFig.51         Preliminary SketchAssembly LineFig.52         Preliminary Sketch9594Assembly LineFig.53         Exploration ModelAssembly LineFig.54         Exploration Model9796Assembly LineFig.55         Exploration ModelAssembly LineFig.56         Final Model9998Assembly LineFig.57         PlanAssembly LineFig.58         Section101100Sitting position, ConsultationTransition position Lithotomy position,ExaminationAssembly LineFig.59         Chair Movement DiagramExam Room 3Exam Room 2Exam Room 1Reception DeskPatient’s LineDoctor’s LineChanging RoomAssembly LineFig.60         Clinic Sequence Diagram103102Negotiating TableNegotiating Table addresses the unquestioned authority of the doctor and it explores the articulation of the environment as a tool to alter power relations. What in the space of the exam room construct the doctor as an absolute authority and the performance of the exam as predetermined, rigid and fixed? The existing exam room is understood as the territory of the doctor’s objective knowledge, although the reality is that the doctor’s knowledge is relative and subjective. All doctors are individuals with opinions, experiences, limitations. In that regard, all exams are a performed negotiation. Negotiating Table shapes the exchange between patient and doctor closer to a consumer/service-provider relationship. It frames the consultation and exam procedure around a table that allows to negotiate which procedures will be performed, which tools will be used and which positions the patient and the doctor will take. Fixed to integrate sliding tracks on the table, the sharing of the tool becomes a game of negotiation, a blend of give and take, push and pull, first you then me. The table also hides detail elements on both the patient’s side and the doctor’s side, as well as an adjustable height, in order to a menu of positions to be negotiated. For example, a vaginal swab test could be performed as self-exam, in standing position or lithotomy position. All positions symbolize different articulations of power in the interaction between doctor and patient.Negotiating Table suggests that check-up exams should offer room for informal knowledge and patient’s intuition.105104Negotiating TableFig.61         Preliminary SketchNegociating TableFig.62         Preliminary Sketch107106Negotiating TableFig.63         Preliminary SketchNegociating TableFig.64         Preliminary Sketch109108Negotiating TableFig.65         PlanNegociating TableFig.66         Section111110Self-exam positionSitting positionLithotomy positionNegotiating TableFig.67         Position MenuStanding positionStanding positionNegociating TableFig.68         Position Menu113112Negotiating TableFig.69         Final ModelNegociating TableFig.70         Final Model115114Garden of Eden Historically, gynecology is a discipline based on masculine domination, the perpetuation of violence towards women and the disrespect of their consent. J. Marion Sims, so called the father of gynecology, provided significant advancement in the field by practising surgery on black women slaves without anaesthesia (Wikipedia, 2018).While the existing medical apparatus is the result and the representation of masculine domination and symbolic violence towards women, wouldn’t it be better if the exam room was designed to the image of women? This proposal uses irony and symbolism to critique the design of gendered space, and more particularly of feminine space that I consider as a form of soft violence. Garden of Eden makes the simple design move of taking the typical exam room and placing it in a garden, the most feminine of outdoor spaces. It is a glass box with curtains in a garden; women are precious and beautiful, they are to be preserved and watched. Garden of Eden transforms the routine gynecological check-up as a feminine ritual, a celebration of womanhood, a ladyship ceremony. Sensitive, pleasant, soft, pretty and caring, isn’t that what being a woman all about? The Irony of the Garden of Eden challenges our construction of womanhood based on patriarchal and heteronormative value. Not only does it confine cis-women in a strict mold dictating what they can and cannot be or do, but it oppressed the trans and queer community on whom we imposed the binary construction of gender.117116Garden of EdenFig.71         Preliminary SketchGarden of EdenFig.72         Preliminary Sketch119118Garden of EdenFig.73         Preliminary SketchGarden of EdenFig.74         Preliminary Sketch121120Garden of EdenFig.75         Exploration ModelGarden of EdenFig.76         Exploration Model123122Garden of EdenFig.77         Exploration ModelGarden of EdenFig.78         Exploration Model125124Garden of EdenFig.79         PlanGarden of EdenFig.80         Section127126Garden of EdenFig.81         Conceptual Collage129128Garden of EdenFig.82         Final ModelGarden of EdenFig.83         Final Model131130Elastic RoomElastic Room addresses the exam room as a space to perform and construct gender identities and sexualities. On the one hand, the identities are performed by the patient’s behavior that induct a self-positioning. On the other hand, they are also constructed by the external authority of the clinic and so the exam room is a space of knowledge production.Based on the theory of performativity as explained in by Judith Butler in “Gender Trouble” (1999), the design consists of tying the chair and the tools to a flexible skin forming the envelope, with the use of pulled elastics. In this way, the patient’s body is connected to the furniture and then the architecture. Therefore, the body’s movement is extended to the built and the space forms a metaphor of the external structure and internal performative behavior. The self-positioning of the patient is restricted by the construction of the identity matrix, produced by the space of the exam. Myriad of tools is suspended throughout the room. The variety of tools and tool models is a way to respond to the pluralities of identities. The doctor and the patient can reach for a particular tool that is most suitable for the individualized exam. The literal flexibility and elasticity of the room is an attempt to adapt the exam room to a queer reading of sexuality and gender. The tension of the proposal resides in the limitation of possibilities; on can choose their tool, but among the selection only, as well as the awkwardness of the performance. One can imagine both patient and doctor trying to for tools or the patient moving on the suspended unstable chair.133132Elastic RoomFig.84         Preliminary SketchElastic RoomFig.85         Preliminary Sketch135134Elastic RoomFig.86         Preliminary SketchElastic RoomFig.87         Preliminary Sketch137136Elastic RoomFig.88         Exploration ModelElastic RoomFig.89         Exploration Model139138Elastic RoomFig.90         Exploration ModelElastic RoomFig.91         Exploration Model141140Elastic RoomFig.92         PlanElastic RoomFig.93         Section143142Elastic RoomFig.94         Final ModelElastic RoomFig.95         Final Model145144Final PresentationFig.96           Final Presentation Boards147146ConclusionGoing back to the beginning of the thesis project, I wanted to learn about how feminism and architecture can come together, how a practice of architecture can be feminist. For over a year, the work on the thesis was an intense learning curve. I had to acknowledge the limitation of architecture’s agency, especially when operating in a world where architecture is subject to the forces of patriarchal capitalism. The work produced in GP2 brought me to think that architecture can be useful to the feminist project by using it as a creative tool to develop critical feminist knowledge.The thesis was also an enriching reflection on architecture as a discipline and on the relationship between theory and practice. I have a clearer critical step back from the system of value that operates in architecture school and practice as well as a better sense of how theory and practice can work alongside towards the same goal. There are two distinct ways to approach a question that can feed one another. In the future, I wish to pursuit work inscribed between theory and design practice.The critical approach adopted in the project was not aiming to construct a more functional exam room. Instead, it deployed design methods serving the production of knowledge and shifting to a feminist lens the way we understand the practice of gynecological exams. In the future, the exercise could be extended to the analysis of other spaces, such as a school or a restaurant, again to make use of architecture in revealing the spatial patriarchal principles. Rather than taking the problem-solving approach, the thesis defends the idea of using architecture, creative process and design in a way to challenge the norm and shed light on invisible forces that shapes our lives. It is in this way that I believe architecture can be feminist.Fig.97         Final Models149148Illustrations CreditsFig.1        Illustration by author 2Fig.2        Illustration by author 4Fig.3        Illustration by author 4Fig.4        Unknow author. At the wheel at Fond Farm, 1950.http://ww.wearenotamuse.co.uk/bauhaus-women 6Fig.5         Unknown author. Portrait of Gunta, around 1926. Bauhaus-Archiv Berlin 6Fig.6         Heinrich Koch, 1920. Portrait of Benita Koch-Otte. Bauhaus-Archiv Berlin 6Fig.7         Illustration by author 8Fig.8         Illustration from RAIC Journal (Lennox advertisement), October 1968.   14Fig.9          Illustration from RAIC Journal (Fairfacts advertisement), April-June 1924.   14Fig.10        Illustration by author 16Fig.11        Infographic from 2017 Architectural Review Survey 18Fig.12        Photograph from Women of Waves 43Fig.13        Photograph from Women of Waves 43Fig.14        Photograph from Atelier Van Lieshout 43Fig.15        Photograph from Nienke Helder 45Fig.16        Photograph from Nienke Helder 45Fig.17        Photograph from Nienke Helder 45Fig.18        Photograph from Nienke Helder 45Fig.19        Illustration from Camilla Andersson 47Fig.20        Photograph from Androchair team project 49Fig.21        Illustration by author 51Fig.22        Illustration by author 53Fig.23        Illustration by author 55Fig.24        Illustration by author 57Fig.25        Photograph by author 58Fig.26        Photograph by author 58Fig.27        Photograph by author 58Fig.28        Illustration by author 59Fig.29        Illustration by author 61Fig.30        Illustration by author 63Fig.31        Illustration by author 65Fig.32        Illustration by author 67Fig.33        Illustration by author 72Fig.34        Illustration by author 73Fig.35        Illustration by author 74Fig.36        Illustration by author 75Fig.37        Illustration by author 76Fig.38        Illustration by author 77Fig.39        Photograph by author 78Fig.40        Photograph by author 79Fig.41        Photograph by author 80Fig.42        Photograph by author 81Fig.43        Illustration by author 82Fig.44        Illustration by author 83Fig.45        Illustration by author 84Fig.46        Photograph by author 85Fig.47        Illustration by author 88Fig.48        Illustration by author 89Fig.49        Illustration by author 90Fig.50        Illustration by author 91Fig.51        Illustration by author 92Fig.52        Illustration by author 93Fig.53        Photograph by author 94Fig.54        Photograph by author 95Fig.55        Photograph by author 96Fig.56        Photograph by author 97Fig.57        Illustration by author 98Fig.58        Illustration by author 99Fig.59        Illustration by author 100151150Fig.60        Illustration by author 101Fig.61        Illustration by author 104Fig.62        Illustration by author 105Fig.63        Illustration by author 106Fig.64        Illustration by author 107Fig.65        Illustration by author 108Fig.66        Illustration by author 109Fig.67        Illustration by author 110Fig.68        Illustration by author 111Fig.69        Photograph by author 112Fig.70        Photograph by author 113Fig.71        Illustration by author 116Fig.72        Illustration by author 117Fig.73        Illustration by author 118Fig.74        Illustration by author 119Fig.75        Photograph by author 120Fig.76        Photograph by author 121Fig.77        Photograph by author 122Fig.78        Photograph by author 123Fig.79        Illustration by author 124Fig.80        Illustration by author 125Fig.81        Illustration by author 127Fig.82        Photograph by author 128Fig.83        Photograph by author 129Fig.84        Illustration by author 132Fig.85        Illustration by author 133Fig.86        Illustration by author 134Fig.87        Illustration by author 135Fig.88        Photograph by author 136Fig.89        Photograph by author 137Fig.90        Photograph by author 138Fig.91        Photograph by author 139Fig.92        Illustration by author 140Fig.93        Illustration by author 141Fig.94        Photograph by author 142Fig.95        Photograph by author 143Fig.96        Illustration by author 144Fig.97        Photograph by author 147153152Bibliography“Gender drilldown”. 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Burlington, VT; Farnham, Surrey: Ashgate Publishing Company.———. 2011; 2016. “Feminist practices: Interdisciplinary approaches to women in architecture.” Burlington, VT; Farnham, Surrey: Ashgate.Butler, Judith. 1999. “Gender trouble: Feminism and the subversion of identity.”  New York: Routledge.Canadian Cancer Society. 2018. “Pelvic Exam.” Accessed April 25, 2018. http://www.cancer.ca/en/cancer-information/diagnosis-and-treatment/tests-and-procedures/pelvic-exam/?region=qc Chikako Chang, Lian. “Where are the women? measuring progress on gender in architecture.”  in Association of Collegiate Schools of Architecture. 2014 [cited 04/11 2017]. 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Last modified march 7, 2016. http://www.statcan.gc.ca/tables-tableaux/sum-som/l01/cst01/health75b-eng.htmSquires, Bethy. 2016. “The Racist and Seist History of Keeping Birth Control Side Effects Secret.” Last modified October 17, 2016. https://broadly.vice.com/en_us/article/kzeazz/the-racist-and-sexist-history-of-keeping-birth-control-side-effects-secretStratigakos, Despina.2016. “Where are the women architects?” Princeton: Princeton University Press.Surprenant, Marie-Eve. 2015. “Manuel de résistance féministe: pour mettre fin aux inégalités persistantes et contrer l’antiféminisme.” Montreal: les Éditions du Remue-Ménage.Tether, Bruce. “How architecture cheats women: Results of the 2017 women in architecture survey revealed” . 2017 [cited 03/21 2017]. Available from https://www.architectural-review.com/rethink/how-architecture-cheats-women-results-of-the-2017-women-in-architecture-survey-revealed/10017497.article.———. “Results of the 2016 women in architecture survey revealed” . 2016 [cited 03/21 2017]. Available from https://www.architectural-review.com/rethink/results-of-the-2016-women-in-architecture-survey-revealed/10003314.article.Trinidad, Angel. 2017. “Nienke Helder designs therapy tools for women recovering from sexual trauma” Last modified November 4th, 2017. https://www.dezeen.com/2017/11/04/sexual-healing-tools-provide-therapy-women-suffering-sexual-trauma-design-dutch-design-week/Weisman, Leslie Kanes. 1992. “Discrimination by design: A feminist critique of the man-made environment.”  Urbana: University of Illinois Press.Whitten, Diana. “Vessel” . 2014. Netherlands. Dianna Whitten and Mitchell Block, 2017 online streaming (Netflix).Wikipedia. “J. Marions Sims.” Last modified April 21th 2018. https://fr.wikipedia.org/wiki/J._Marion_Sims Women on Waves. N.d. “Women on Waves.” Accessed April 25th, 2018. https://www.womenonwaves.org/en/ Z. Grunspan, Daniel, L. Eddy, Sarah, E. Brownell, Sara, L. Wiggins, Benjamin, J. Crowe, Alison and M. Goodreau, Steven. “Males under-estimate academic performance of their female peers in undergraduate biology classrooms.”  2016 [cited 04/06 2017]. Available from http://journals.plos.org/plosone/article?id=10.1371%2Fjournal.pone.0148405.The  University of British ColumbiaSchool of Architecture and Landscape ArchitectureArchitecture ProgramReading Room AuthorizationIn Presenting this report in partial fulfillment of the requirements for the advanced degree in the Architecture Program at the University of British Columbia, I agree that the Architecture Reading Room shall make it freely available for reference and study. I further agree that permission for extensive copying of this report for scholarly purposes may be granted by the Chair of Architecture or by his or her representatives. It is understood that copying or publication of this thesis for financial gain shall not be allowed without my written permission.Olivia Daigneault DeschênesName of AuthorSignatureApril 27th, 2018DateDoing Feminism in ArchitectureTitleMastersDegreeArchitectureProgram2018Year of Graduation Ceremony


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