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Women hit worse than men in recession, says Reed

The number of woman architects has dramatically fallen as a result of the recession, according to shocking statistics unveiled by RIBA this week

The proportion of women in practice fell from 28 per cent to 20 per cent in just six months, said RIBA president Ruth Reed who described the turn as ‘devastating’.

After women, student architects were the second worst hit by the recession. ‘The people being laid off are women and the people being laid off or not getting jobs are students,’ said Reed who was chairing her first RIBA council meeting on Tuesday (6 October).

The AJ unveiled the total number of architects claiming unemployment benefit rose last month to 2,055. Seven per cent of all ARB registered architects are unemployed, but the true figure could be even higher with many architects unable or unwilling to register their claim for benefit.

The UK is at its highest level of unemployment since the mid 1990s with a total 2.47 million unemployed (7.9 per cent).  

Readers' comments (7)

  • I was made redundant from a large, central London practice and it was mostly males who followed me out of the door...that is probably because we were paid more and were first to go...

    vis-a-vis - we can never win!

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  • No gender bias redundancies where I was formerly employed....we all had to go sooner or later regardless if your experience, gender, talent or level of responsibility. We had 85% redundancy and many of those people have not found work.

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  • Ruth is talking rubbish - i hope she does not turn out to be a lame duck like the previous president - its not the royal institute of female british architects - stop tinkering ruth and tackle the big issues.......

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  • ^^^ I agree entirely.

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  • It is irrelevant - everyone is suffering, men, women and children not just those losing their jobs! The profession needs a strong president to fight for all members, without discrimination. The last president did nothing, I hope that Ruth will try to do better before it is too late.

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  • Women have continually suffered in this profession, losing out on jobs, pay etc. Welcome men to our world. At last someone who might champion the other 50% of the population.

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  • I'm not sure this is a gender issue. the real issue is the scale of redundant Architects. The figures for unemployed Architects are totally inaccurate, I used to sub-contract from a few different practices all of which have made major cuts and I have no work what so ever. Out of every one I know who has lost there jobs from the regional chapter, I don't know of anyone who is eligible to claim benefits, therefore being totally of the radar. I feel furious with the current goverment. Gordon Brown was warned by the eminent US economist Prof. Robert Shiller that the UK Housing market was severely overvalued 3 years ago and completely dismissed him. He successfully predicted the crash in 2007 and is now predicting a second UK collapse. Our profession is the economic barometer of the construction industry it's no wonder that official figures don't illustrate the extent of just how bad it is out there.

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