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Women in Design: panel discussion

To mark International Women’s Day, a Women in Design: panel discussion was held to celebrate women in the creative industry, and to discuss pertinent issues of underrepresentation and the gender pay gap, the importance of role models and allyship, and the future of the industry.

Women in Design panellists smiling at camera smiling a

The Design Council (2022) named the underrepresentation present in industry, as a ‘diversity crisis within the design economy’: “The design economy is still disproportionately male: 77% of designers identified as male in 2020, with hardly any change since 2015. Designers who are female, from an ethnic minority or have a disability are also underrepresented at senior and managerial levels” (Design Council, Design Economy 2022 Report).

The Women in Design: panel discussion is an opportunity to discuss this with ADBE staff and students. Panellists included; Illustrator Chellie Carroll, Research and Consultancy Project Manager Emily Hancock, User Researcher Frances-Mary Ukpokolo, and was organised by Product Design Lecturers Kathryn Pashley and Dr Rebecca Gamble.

Women in lecture theatre talking

“We are really passionate about ensuring there are diverse role models for our students, both in the examples we use in our teaching and with the industry guests we invite. The timing of International Women's Day offers us a strong platform to discuss underrepresentation in the design industry, but this is an ongoing year-round discussion and area of interest for us” – Dr Rebecca Gamble, Senior Lecturer in Product Design.

Student comments included:

“Conversations like this feel so important to me as a female student and designer and help me to prepare well for the world of work.”.

“I loved this event and the shared personal stories from the panellists – it felt like listening in to a lively podcast.”

Find out more about our commitment to Equality, Diversity and Inclusion.

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