The worrying figures in your article “Small Steps” on women in industry (31 July, page 3) are no surprise to me
There had been some improvement in recent years. Between 2001 and 2007 the RICS’ Raising the Ratio Task Force, of which I was a member, succeeded in increasing the proportion of women members from 10-15%. Yet the fact this number has now dropped to just over 10% reflects the continual battle we face.
There are two ways in which we can change the situation. One is to reject negative and stereotypical views of women that seem to still prevail. Yet such a fundamental change in mindset will take a long time. The other is to raise the profile of the industry among the general public. Lots of good work is already being done. The Construction Ambassador scheme seeks to encourage girls – and boys – to consider a career in construction. Equally, organisations such as Women in Property hold roadshows hosted by female construction professionals demonstrating a career path to the top.
By engaging young people as early as possible, we can create an environment in which high-ranking females will become even more widespread in the future.
Carol Bell, senior project manager, Robinson Low Francis