Parlour and the University of Melbourne presented Transformations: Action on Equity – two days of lively, incisive and necessary exchange on gender equity and the built environment professions.

Tranformations: Action on Equity

Transformations brought together an extraordinary group of researchers, professionals and activists who are challenging and changing the way we think about gender in the built environment, and actively creating new futures for these professions and the communities they serve.

Videos of all session are now available on Parlour Live!, our youtube channel.

How is gender equity reshaping and reinvigorating our professions and disciplines?  What action is underway? What demands are being made? Where do we each find agency? What complexities must we engage with? What do we need to better understand? What next?

Transformations: Action on Equity, was the 2nd ABP Symposium. Convened by Justine Clark, Julie Willis and Anna Hurliman, it was presented as a collaboration between Parlour and the Melbourne School of Design at the University of Melbourne. as a collaboration between Parlour and the Melbourne School of Design at the University of Melbourne.


Keynote speakers were Sharon Egretta Sutton and Jos Boys. The program was organised as a series of discussions investigating key modes of action – organising at the grassroots, leadership through policy, reshaping the workplace, and rewriting history. The symposium also expanded our knowledge through exploratory conversations on topics that intersect with and expand understandings of gender equity – Beyond the Binary, Mental Health and Wellbeing, and Gendered Indigeneity.


1 formal CPD point for each hour available for architects, planners and landscape architects.

Symposium learning outcomes are as follows:

  • To gain an increased awareness of the impact of gender-based bias in the built environment professions
  • To understand the range of actions underway done to address this – from grass roots activism to workplace change and institutional policy
  • To critically analyse the implications of gender inequities in built environments, including their intersection with other equity considerations
  • To consider how to address gender inequity and its impact within practices, professional structure and workplaces
  • To explore how the work of built environment professionals can help to create inclusive built environment that are welcoming for all, and help to mitigate entrenched inequities

These are relevant to the practice management and design competencies set out in the National Competency Standard for Architects.

To gain formal CPD, attendees must complete the reflective assessment task provided at the symposium.

Download the CPD assessment form here.


9am Thursday 14 November – 6pm Friday 15 November 2019


In 2012 Parlour and the Melbourne School of Design collaborated on Transform: Altering the Future of Architecture. This one-day symposium asked, “If architecture was more inclusive would it also be in a stronger position?” It speculated about how we might generate a more equitable, effective and robust profession and what such a discipline might look like.

Transform was a significant step in creating a newly active community advocating for gender equity, which crosses between and among practice, academia and allied fields. This community went on to activate the research and discussion within and beyond Australia. It helped create new knowledge and put that knowledge to work. An extraordinary amount of work and action on gender equity in the built environment has occurred in the intervening six years – which builds on decades of earlier work.

In 2019, much has changed, but there is still a great deal of work to do.

Developed as a partnership between Parlour and the University of Melbourne, Transformations: Action on Equity will create a space in which to reflect on the impact so far and project forward to future action. Building on the work undertaken on architecture, it will also extend the discussion to other built environment professions.

The ABP Symposiums

Transformations is the second Symposium of the Faculty of Architecture, Building and Planning (ABP). The inaugural ABP Symposium was held in 2018. ‘Go Back to Where You Came From: Indigenous Design – Past | Present | Future’ was carefully curated as a provocation to explore the role of Indigenous design; the event showcased a range of established local and international First Nations design practitioners across a diversity of disciplines and provided an opportunity to reveal design approaches straddling interconnected themes of culture, Country and identity.