Living in a multicultural setting, specially coming from abroad and living in a country where you are an immigrant, you are inevitably exposed to some hostility and intimidating environments where competition is fierce, and there is occasionally little tolerance for cultural differences in opinions and tastes. Many people have had to face minority ethnic problems in the work environment and have unfortunately been victims of racism in the office. There are many different studies made in cosmopolitan and rural cities around the world which show that victims of racism in the workplace have been affected negatively by this matter, diminishing their work output, their ways of expression, and their contribution to new ideas. Many express that they feel discrimination and that it can range from minimal to heavily present. In addition, some others feel that career progression in the workplace is not equal and that there is something that should be done regarding the issue. It is something which has to be faced in order to break the cultural barriers and so that we can face new frontiers as a united group. With Architect-US we can help contribute to break down these barriers and see headway in diversity inclusion.
Having diversity in architecture is something which directly impacts communities and people in the workplace. This of course ranges in everything from gender inequality to the integration of multicultural individuals in the office space. The disparity of these different issues is found in almost every category ranging from racial diversity to religious beliefs and it shown to have a profound impact in the incorporation of people. Thankfully we have seen progression on this topic and there seems to be a bright future, but there is still a long way to go. According to an article by Redshift, Gabrielle Bullock director of Global Diversity at Perkins + Will Architects says that “there are more women and minorities going into architecture school. Women in the profession are no longer immediately assumed to be the administrative staff. Blacks and Hispanics are not found only in support roles but are gaining leadership positions. The future is looking brighter, though it will take deliberate actions to improve diversity by starting all the way from those in higher level of authority within the company.” Something which higher-ups should take into acknowledgement and aid in the matter by confronting these issues. We must introduce this these ideals into the work dynamic in order to see progression in business internalization, diversity inclusion, professional environment, and wider and more profound knowledge and perspective.
It is without a doubt that diversity is good for business and global communities. The industry is in need of platforms that encourage global dialogue, breaks down immigration bureaucracy barriers and promotes cross-pollination. This has been proven by many different fast paced companies, who choose to operate by these standards, and it is inarguable that it brings more talent, and awareness to our society. According to a McKinsey & Company report, “U.S. public companies with diverse executive boards have a 95 percent higher return on equity than those without”. Achieving a more diverse workforce requires firms to be thoughtful and engage in a proactive matter to make these changes possible. If we manage to make multicultural diversity and the inclusion of these individuals become a standard for the way in which business is conducted, we will see more return in the growth of the company and in the results we provide for our communities. For architecture to make a connection to the people and progress over time, we must think of broadening every profession, and the standards of applications- and in this case being architecture- it is essential. We never know where the next emerging talent will come from, and by now knowing that it has been proven and studied that top performing companies have a diverse staff, why not begin the transformation now and be part of a solution to a problem that needs change?