Back to Content

Breaking Down the Barriers — a panel discussion on widening access to design education — 22.09.21

Summer Pavilion Workshop as part of the Celebrating Architecture programme run by HomeGrown Plus and Urban Learners.

How can we give talented, underrepresented individuals the keys to unlock doors into the industry that have always been closed to them?

Architectural professionals, developers, engineers, and others within the built environment community should be challenged on the current skills and framework required to widen access into the industry.

Breaking Down the Barriers seeks to mobilise a wider range of pathways into the built environment. In this panel discussion, we will discuss how organisations can facilitate a career, offering alternative solutions, without the need for a university, debt-ridden education. The event will conclude with a Q&A session, allowing attendees to participate in the conversation.

The panellists:

  • Del Hossain (Chair) — Adrem
  • Neil Pinder — Graveney School & HomeGrown Plus
  • Venetia Wolfenden — Urban Learners
  • Caterina Polidoro — TP Bennett
  • Fenja Scarisbrick Jones — GPAD
  • Tom Mann — Savills
  • Shawn Adams — POoR Collective

By sharing our ideas and insights, we can create a network focused on changing the perception of architecture and the built environment, creating a more diverse and inclusive industry. We pose the following questions:

  • How can we open up our networks and widen our reach?
  • Why does university still seem like the only route?

Breaking Down the Barriers will serve as a platform to show how businesses can begin to introduce different routes into a career into the built environment.

This event is free to attend and you can watch online. Register for Breaking Down the Barriers here.


This event is in partnership between GPAD and the London School of Architecture as part of the London Design Festival 2021.