In the UK, design, as with many industries, remains a male dominated profession. According to research by the Design Council in 2018, across the design workforce, 22% of the workforce are women. In architecture that drops to 17%, and in industrial design a tiny 5% of the workforce are women.
But awareness of the gender split and the disparities in terms of pay and seniority is growing. In 2018, companies in the UK with over 250 staff were legally obliged to publish their gender pay gap data. And in design, there are several initiatives that focus on women’s work in the sector – including one that we’re teaming up with at OnOffice.
WOD – Women in Office Design was founded in May 2018 by Harsha Kotak, an interior designer and writer. In less than a year, the group has gained over 400 members across the world, who meet at regular educational and networking events.
The group’s mission is to inspire and empower women working in all facets of the office design industry, from architects to saleswomen, and it aims to support its members’ professional development through networking events, mentorship, education and advocacy.
OnOffice will be tapping into the shared expertise of WOD’s membership to bring you insights from women working in the industry. Each month, we will publish an interview with a woman from across the sector, discussing her experience and thoughts on the industry.
The first in our series is with founder Harsha Kotak, who has worked across the UK, US and India, and aims to take WOD global – first with a chapter launching in Spain in April, then in New York in May. Read more about her experience in our first interview.
WOD – Women in Office Design aims to inspire, educate and connect women from all across the industry