Gender Mainstreaming in Architecture
Forms built architecture, a city (a village, a country, a state, etc.) a neutral or supportive background for the free and self-determined design of the individual life of every person – regardless of gender, age, skin color, nationality, state of health, religion, etc. – then we can talk about optimal architecture and urban planning (spatial planning, etc.).
Our architecture, urban and spatial planning, which is still dominated by men, is based on a “normal” standard person – a 33-year-old, full-time employed, healthy, walkable man with his own car, father of two children, with a discarded everyday life (= without care work), which is guaranteed by its partner. This common planning structure pursues minority interests, places the car and economic interests, but not people and human needs at the center of the planning process.
From these premises arise cities with e.g. fast-moving transit axes and mono functional ghettos (sleeping cities, commercial and industrial areas, etc.). Architecture then meets perhaps aesthetic aspects but not functional needs.
In many cases, women in particular are restricted in their free lifestyles by this design of houses and cities – in addition to the restrictions of the social roles attributed to them.
Architecture, urban planning, spatial planning, etc. are on the one hand tools and instruments of the prevailing patriarchal social structures and on the other hand the results of these structures. Changing these structures and creating a supportive environment for all people is the goal of gender mainstreaming in architecture, urban planning and spatial planning.