Diversity, and the voices and perspectives that come with it, can be a powerful force for positive change and innovation, be it in the arena of political discourse or education or professional life.
The fields that are responsible for conceiving and building the physical spaces people inhabit, including architecture, real estate development and construction, can have a profound impact on how communities come together. And yet there is a troubling scarcity in the representation of Black women in these roles; it’s a growing concern, because they have valuable perspectives to offer on the spaces they create where a community can thrive.
Data from the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics from 2020 show that architecture, engineering and construction are dominated by white males, while Black people and women are extremely underrepresented: 88% of construction workers and 85% of architecture and engineering professionals are white, and only 10.9% of construction workers and 27% of architecture and engineering professionals are women; meanwhile, Black people make up only 6% of the workforces respectively in construction and in architecture and engineering. According to the National Association of Home Builders’ 2019 Builder Member Census, just 9% of members are women, and less than 0.5% are Black.