• 08 Mar 2022

Marking International Women’s Day

In December last the UN announced the theme for International Women’s Day 2022 – “Gender equality today for a sustainable tomorrow”. The day was aimed at “recognising the contribution of women and girls around the world, who are leading the charge on climate change adaptation, mitigation, and response, to build a more sustainable future for all”. 

At that time, we were all looking forward to moving beyond the COVID-19 pandemic and using the experiences of the last two years to address the challenges in both our society and profession. Unfortunately, the theme of “Gender equality for a sustainable tomorrow” has gained a different perspective as we witness atrocities against the people of Ukraine that are equally affecting men and women, young and old. 

We can take inspiration from our own International Women of Architecture and Cultural Ambassadors for Ireland – Yvonne Farrell and Shelly McNamara – and the values set out in their FREESPACE manifesto for La Biennale di Venezia, the International Architecture Exhibition, in 2018. FREESPACE brought into focus the “generosity of spirit and a sense of humanity that is at the core of architecture’s agenda”, it gave us “examples of generosity and thoughtfulness in architecture throughout the world” and it demonstrated “the fundamental capacity of architecture to nurture and support meaningful contact between people and place”.

It is these values of humanity, generosity, thoughtfulness, combined with a capacity and willingness to nurture and support, that we can use to bring focus on achieving equality, and to address the challenges for society, women and girls everywhere. Today, on International Women’s Day 2022 we should appreciate what the women of Ireland have achieved and seek to work together to eradicate barriers in our profession, our society, and in our built environment, and to enable women contribute to their full potential.

If you'd like to join the virtual celebration of the United Nations Observance of International Women’s Day, which it will take place on 8 March 2022, from 3.00-4.30pm Irish time visit:

To register, visit Gender Equality Today for a Sustainable Tomorrow - UN Observance of International Women's Day 2022.

Image: © United Nations Observance