Sanaa Shaikh

Architect, London, United Kingdom

What inspired you to want a life in Architecture and the creative industries?:
Growing up in London, I was always in awe of the diverse buildings, scales and spaces around me. I also loved drawing, creating, making and questioning how I understood the world around me.

Who inspired you in finding your path to Architecture/Film and the creative industries?:

No-one. I had no-one around me that suggested the path to me. My brother suggested my strength at maths and art might lend me to be a good architect, so I got work experience and really enjoyed it.

How you unlock obstacles and overcome bias in your work?:
Try to point to data, articles and resources that can educate people and raise awareness of bias.
I also try to provide a range examples and scenarios that help to communicate to others the impact of their decisions.

What improvements do you feel are required to promote effective change in the academic and working environment?:
There needs to be more people of colour in senior leadership. Interviews for new candidates should always have mixed gender and background interviewers. There needs to be real support and understand in practices that people of colour will have issues and problems that will be new to them. Companies need to ensure there is appropriate support for this.

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