Program date: March 8, 2021

Organized by   SAH WiA AG Logo        SAHGB logo


This webinar, sponsored by the newly organized SAH Women in Architecture Affiliate Group (SAH WiA AG) and SAHGB's Women's Architectural Historians’ Network (WAHN), brings together panelists from the US and the UK to discuss the circumstances—social, political, cultural, educational—during which women began to enter architecture as a professionalized and licensed practice near the start of the twentieth century. Taking a comparative view, the webinar considers whether this phenomenon could be attributed to the change in lifestyles and attitudes towards women's work in modernity, a change in the attitude towards women's education, or other factors. Was it linked to a new social consciousness instigated by consecutive waves of feminist activity? Did women’s presence disrupt the masculine construction of the professional persona of the architect?


  • Shelley E. Roff, Associate Professor, University of Texas at San Antonio, Associate Chair of the SAH Women in Architecture Affiliate Group

  • Elizabeth Darling, Reader in Architectural History, Oxford Brookes University & Convener of the Women Architectural Historians' Network, SAHGB

Introduction to SAH WiA AG:

  • Anna Sokolina, Chair of the SAH Women in Architecture Affiliate Group


  • Dolores Hayden, Professor Emerita, Yale University: ‘Alice Constance Austin’

  • Johanna Hays, PhD Auburn University: ‘Louise Bethune’

  • Doris Cole, Architect and Independent Scholar: ‘Eleanor Raymond’

  • Luca Csepely-Knorr, Reader in Architecture, Manchester School of Architecture: ‘Brenda Colvin and the profession of landscape architecture in the UK’

  • Diane Watters, Historic Environment Scotland: 'Edith Burnet Hughes: Uncovering Women in Architectural History'

  • Ola Uduku, Research Professor in Architecture, Manchester School of Architecture and Manchester Metropolitan University: ‘West African Women Architects – A Colonial Post-Colonial Perspective’



Doris Cole, FAIA, is an architect and author. She was a founding principal for 30 years at the firm of Cole and Goyette, Architects and Planners Inc. and is currently principal at Doris Cole, FAIA, Architecture/Planning in Cambridge, MA. Her award-winning designs have included educational, commercial, and housing projects. She has authored five books and numerous articles, and has lectured at the University of Virginia, Boston Society of Architects, the 2021 Paris International Colloquium on Gender Dynamics, and elsewhere. In 1973 she wrote the first book on American women in architecture, From Tipi to Skyscraper: A History of Women in Architecture, and in 1981 Eleanor Raymond, Architect. Doris’ personal and professional papers are part of the Cole and Goyette Collection at Harvard Graduate School of Design Frances Loeb Library Special Collections. She received the AB cum laude from Radcliffe College and the MArch from Harvard Graduate School of Design.
Dr. Luca Csepely-Knorr is a chartered landscape architect and art historian working as Reader at the Manchester School of Architecture (MSA). She co-directs the Architecture Research Hub at MSA, is Departmental Research degrees Coordinator and is Joint Programme Leader of the Master of Landscape Architecture courses.  Luca’s research and writing centre on the histories of landscape architecture, architecture and urban design from the late 19th century to the 1970s, with a particular emphasis on the development of design theories of public spaces, international knowledge transfer and the role of women in the development of the landscape profession.
She is currently Co-Investigator of the AHRC-funded project ‘Landscapes of Post-War Infrastructure: Culture, Amenity, Heritage and Industry,’ and co-convener of the multidisciplinary conference and research network ‘How Women Build?’ supported by the Women’s History Network and the Paul Mellon Centre for Studies in British Art.
Twitter: @lucaknorr
Instagram: @lucaknorr


Dr. Elizabeth Darling is Reader in Architectural History in the School of History, Philosophy and Culture, Oxford Brookes University. Her research focuses on inter-war modernism, the environments of social welfare reform, and gender. Her publications include Re-forming Britain: Narratives of Modernity before Reconstruction (Routledge, 2007), Women and the Making of Built Space in England, 1870-1950 (Ashgate, 2007; co-edited with Lesley Whitworth); Wells Coates (RIBA Publications, 2012) and Suffragette City, Women, Politics, and the Built Environment (Routledge, 2020; co-edited with Nathaniel Walker) as well as numerous articles for journals including the Journal of British Studies and Gender and History. She is adviser to the Oxford Dictionary of National Biography on widening the coverage of women architects, and is currently a Senior Anniversary Fellow at the Institute of Advanced Studies in the Humanities, University of Edinburgh, working on her project Heroines of the Canongate: Women as Urban and Social Reformers in Edinburgh’s Edwardian Old Town.
Dolores Hayden’s books on feminist theories of space and the politics of the built environment include Building Suburbia: Green Fields and Urban Growth, 1820–2000The Power of Place: Urban Landscapes as Public History; The Grand Domestic Revolution: A History of Feminist Designs for American Homes, Neighborhoods, and Cities; and Redesigning the American Dream: Housing, Work, and Family Life. Professor Emerita of Architecture, Urbanism, and American Studies at Yale University, Hayden is an architect and urban historian who has received fellowships from the Center for Advanced Study in the Behavioral Sciences at Stanford University, the Radcliffe Institute, and the Guggenheim Foundation. A former President of the Urban History Association and a Fellow of the Society of Architectural Historians, Hayden is also a poet whose third poetry collection, Exuberance, celebrates daredevil pilots, men and women who flew when very few Americans had ever seen an airplane. Her web site is
Johanna Hays, PhD has been museum director, art critic, artist and studied architecture at Cooper Union. She has held positions at the University of Papua New Guinea, Tuskegee University, University of Idaho and Appalachian State University.  She is the author of Louise Blanchard Bethune: America's First Female Professional Architect.  Until recently, architecture has only been a functional career for women in exceptional circumstances of patronage—deserved but resulting from a convergence of circumstances. Louise Blanchard Bethune was the first American woman to successfully walk the path men used to enter the profession in the 1880’s, apprenticeship, founding her own firm (1881), and induction into the AIA (1885). 
Shelley E. Roff, PhD is an Associate Professor at the University of Texas at San Antonio.  Her research addresses the architecture of medieval and early modern Spain, Spanish colonial America, and pre-modern women engaged in architectural design, the building trades and construction labor in Europe.  Her forthcoming book entitled, Treasure of the City: The Public Sphere and Civic Urbanism in Late Medieval Barcelona, investigates the politics of civic construction in the medieval city.  Regarding women’s engagement in the built environment, her significant publications are “Appropriate to Her Sex?  Women’s Participation on the Construction Site in Medieval and Early Modern Europe,” (2010) and “Did Women Design or Build Before the Industrial Age?” (forthcoming August 2021).  Dr. Roff is an architect and architectural historian who has received numerous fellowships, including the 2019 NEH Faculty Award for Hispanic-serving Institutions, the Bogliasco Study Center for the Arts and Humanities, and the Fulbright Foundation.

Anna Sokolina, PhD is an architect, historian, and curator, founding Chair of SAH Women in Architecture AG, also serving on Advisory Boards of the International Archive of Women in Architecture and Bloomsbury Global Encyclopedia of Women in Architecture (eds. Lori Brown and Karen Burns, forthcoming). Her research is focused on women’s narratives in architecture and on transformative trends in architecture that ignite a cross-disciplinary discourse. She edited the anthology Architecture and Anthroposophy (2001, 2010, 2019) and currently works on her book Building Utopia: Architecture of the GDRand is editing The Routledge Companion to Women in Architecture (2021) envisioned as a catalyst for new academic surveys, courses, and other modules and publications around women in architecture across borders; and a dissertation-into-book project of the IAWA founder Prof. Emerita M. Bliznakov, The Great Experiment in Architecture 1917–1932.
Ola Uduku, PhD took up a Chair in Architecture at the Manchester School of Architecture in September 2017. Prior to this she was Reader in Architecture, and Dean International for Africa, at Edinburgh University. Her research specialisms are in Architectural Modernism in West Africa, the history of educational architecture in Africa, and the contemporary issues related to social infrastructure provision for minority communities in cities in the ‘West’ and ‘South’.

She has published in the areas of African Architecture, Urbanism and Diaspora Studies, Notable amongst these publications are: Social Infrastructure in Granby Toxteth, Uduku and Ben-Tovim (1997) Africa Beyond the Post-Colonial,  Uduku and Zack-Williams, (2004) Gated  Communities: Social Sustainability in Contemporary and Historical Gated Developments,  Bagaeen and Uduku, ( 2010) and  Beyond Gated Communites; (Bagaeen and Uduku 2015) She has recently published her monograph Learning Spaces in Africa: Critical Histories, 21stCentury Challenges and Change, (Uduku, June 2018)
Diane M. Watters is an architectural historian at Historic Environment Scotland. She has undertaken a succession of research-based publications on nineteenth and twentieth century architecture in Scotland, including: Little Houses (2006); Homebuilders (2015); and St Peter’s, Cardross: Birth, Death and Renewal (HES, 2016). She is currently researching the history of her hometown, Cumbernauld, and Edinburgh’s historic school architecture.