Equity Forum: What difference does Difference make?
November 29, 2021
Proud to have sat amongst a group of inspirational students, lecturers, and practitioners at last night’s Architecture + Cities Equity Forum launch, titled ‘What difference does Difference Make’.
The new forum, founded by the Westminster’s School of Architecture + Cities, is part of the university’s EDI-related (Equality, Diversity and Inclusion) strategic planning for its campus. The event opened with a series of presentations by Samir Pandya, Assistant Head of the Architecture + Cities School and its Director of International and Strategic Lead for EDI. Samir introduced the forum's aspirations, the students and staff members behind it and the external practices and individuals invited in to support and help guide it.
The night concluded with a panel discussion reflecting on EDI at the School and in wider society. Panel members included: Alison Carrillo Culqui (BA Interior Architecture), Amjad Butt (BSc Architectural Technology), Derin Fadina (School Alumnus), Lucy Banbury (School Student EDI Champion), Marie Kaune (BA Designing Cities), Sude Yilmaz (BA Architecture) and our very own Shaun Ihejetoh (School EDI Practice Advocate, West Port). It was chaired by the wonderful Linda Tighlit, President of Westminster’s Architecture Society. Linda asked the panel members to share their thoughts on the value of diversity within the school environment, where things are working well and where they felt improvements could be made.
It was an eye-opening and sobering night. In the safe and honest space created, attendees were able to share personal stories and speak on matters of EDI that had affected them or those close to them. As EDI Practice Advocates of the forum, we look forward to working closely with Samir and his network to help foster a more equitable academic and social environment at the School.
Shout out to the amazing young panellists who spoke beautifully and eloquently on such demanding topics and inspired all those there to continue to push for a more inclusive society.