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.

THIS EVENT HAS NOW PASSED. Videos of the presentations will be available shortly. If you would like to be kept informed about these, make sure you sign up to the Parlour mailing list.

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?


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 expands 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, and have this stamped as completed. Attendees can do this at the symposium registration desk, or by emailing the completed task to Parlour.

Download the CPD assessment form here.


Transformations is for everyone! People of all genders; scholars, practitioners, educators or those active in the built environment disciplines in other ways; emerging or established.


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


Glyn Davis Building, Faculty of Architecture, Building and Planning, University of Melbourne, Parkville, Vic 3010

Parent facilities

Transformations will have a dedicated room for those with small children. Parents can use this room for napping babies and a feeding room. There is the baby change room located just outside the theatre for changing. We hope to arrange a live feed so that parents can continue to watch the speakers while in the room.


Bookings have now closed for the symposium.

  • Full symposium $120 (concession $50)
  • Single day $75 (concession $35)
  • Conference dinner $60 (Thursday 14 November 2019)
  • Keynote, Sharon Egretta Sutton – free (6 pm Thursday 14 November 2019 Note: there is no need to book separately for this if you have booked symposium tickets)

Note:  Concession rates are available to students, those who are working part time, on a career break, or otherwise require a concession to enable them to attend Transformations.



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.