This site uses cookiesMore Information.

HOK Launches Initiative to Help Teams Design for Equity and Inclusion

A new Designing for Equity internal platform provides guidelines, design principles and best practices that help HOK’s designers incorporate equity into their projects.

This intranet site and its resources emerged from a grassroots staff movement launched in the summer of 2020 to assist the firm’s designers in overcoming systemic inequities in the built environment.

The Designing for Equity program, endorsed by HOK’s Diversity Advisory Council and global Design Board, is now being led by an 18-person firmwide advisory group. HOK teams are testing the recommended approach and design principles on beta projects before rolling out the program across the firm.

This effort builds on HOK’s success in integrating diversity, equity and inclusion throughout the organization. “The next logical step is to extend our DEI efforts beyond our walls by building equity into our design solutions,” said Katherine Antarikso, AIA, NOMA, a project architect in Philadelphia.

The vision is to develop a design culture and approach that will make it easier for HOK teams to design for equity. The platform outlines five basic principles of designing for equity in all projects, regardless of type, scale or location:

  1. Partner with the community.
  2. Plan for inclusion.
  3. Provide equity of experience.
  4. Promote health and well-being for all.
  5. Champion environmental justice.

Along with the design principles, HOK’s Designing for Equity platform provides recommendations on how to make equity a pillar of each office’s design culture and approach. Resources include “precedent studies” demonstrating how HOK’s teams have integrated equity into past projects.

“Our designers shape the world’s places,” said Susan Williams, AIA, LEED AP, managing principal of HOK’s Washington, D.C., Atlanta and Tampa studios. “These places shape our society. As a global practice, we are responsible for creating equal conditions and opportunities for everyone who experiences the environments we design.”

Your browser is out-of-date!

Update your browser to view this website correctly. Update my browser now