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Women At Work (Team Plue)

We cannot talk about the future of work without taking into account that nearly half the population isn't given the same access and privileges as the other half. This is why when we were given the task of creating a design intervention to help make the process of work better for future generations, we knew this was a problem we wanted to target based on our own experiences.

Initial Reasearch

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When we started this research we decided to start from the very beginning. We saw a lot of research regarding how women tend to take on more housework and how men tend to be more confident and outspoken at work while women tend to take on a more demure role but we wanted to know when exactly in their childhood/teenage this difference starts to impact their lives.

We broke the research down into two parts: genetics and societal.

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We researched whether men and women are genetically predisposed towards certain jobs but that was a dead end since the brain chemistry of both females and males is the same and does not impact how well they can do certain tasks. This myth that men's and women's brains are hard-wired differently is called „neurosexism“. The history of sex-difference research is rife with innumeracy, misinterpretation, publication bias, weak statistical power, inadequate controls and worse according to cognitive neuroscientist Gina Rippon.


This train of research was more promising as we found multiple articles that lead us to believe that the environment we are raised in has a huge impact on how we develop as adults. The term gender role refers to society’s concept of how people are expected to look and behave based on societally created norms for masculinity and femininity. Gender role socialization begins at birth and continues throughout the life course. Our society is quick to outfit male infants in blue and girls in pink, even applying these color-coded gender labels while a baby is in the womb.


After finding a plethora of evidence for gender norms being dictated by people's environments, we decided to start interviewing people to get their feedback on this phenomenon. 

In an effort to keep the study as neutral as possible we didn't tell any of the interviewees that this study was regarding gender bias so as to not cloud their opinions. 

We divided the potential interviewees in terms of where they were in life i.e. highschoolers, university, job, entrepreneur etc. We also made sure to talk to both genders in each category. To make sure we covered all our bases we also talked to siblings and a pair of twins as well to make sure we get a full picture.

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All the people we reached out to were super helpful and we were able to get some really interesting insights. This is where however the information started to diverge. At this point we divided ourselves into two groups: One with focus on the early childhood learning aspects of gender roles and bias and the other focusing on women already in the workplace dealing with biases. 

Maria and I decided to work for the women already holding jobs since both of us have our own experiences in the workplace.

Deeper Research

The one important insight we gained in the initial research process was that women dont have too many relatable superiors to look up to. 

Their role models are either privileged girl bosses, unattainable and ruthless careerwomen or just non existent. 

Bo Lu who participates in Pinterest’s Creative Women’s Group says “I’ve hosted workshops on how to manage one’s inner critic and access one’s inner mentor,” she says. “It was empowering to see that women who I view as confident and capable have the same fears I do.„ 

In our interviews, many women expressed a desire for some sort of networking events/casual get togethers where they can meet people face to face outside the environment of stuffy offices and boardrooms.

Our research also shows that women in male dominated fields crave connection with people who have had similar experiences in life. 

After receiving her first degree, Naylor spent three months as a front-end engineer, but left the role because she didn’t feel that her work was good enough. It was only 15 years later, after speaking to female engineers at Grace Hopper Conference who all experienced career isolation, that she realized her disenchantment was probably less about her skills than about being the only female engineer at that job.

Design Interventions

It was not difficult to come to the conclusion that we needed to create something that would allow women to be able to share their knowledge and experiences with each other. This is how „Women at Work“ was born. We wanted to make a not for profit organization whose main function would be to serve as a mentorship platform for women across the world. This organization's secondary purpose would be to host events, fundraisers, concerts and other activities.


„Women at work“ aims to provide women in the workplace with a space to be able to discuss the issues they face, receive feedback from other women with more experience and have a safe space where they can come together to share and collaborate. In this way we hope to allow women the tools they need to make the future of their individual work experience at least a little better.

Website Design

After a lot of back and forth on how we should approach the website design, we decided to break it down it into its main components: The mentorship program and the events. We wanted to make sure that the website was easy to navigate but still very bright and „in your face“ so we decided to go with very loud colours and fonts. The photos we used are historical photos which show how few women were able to shine and succeed so we treated them with the bright colours but the women in the photo are black and white to shine a spotlight on them.


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For the website itself we wanted it to be very easy to navigate. The main focus is not to find the perfect mentor rather, to give women the opportunity to talk to other like-minded women and create a community for themselves. This would help in referring each other to jobs, collaborating and learning from one another.

All in all we hope this project would be the catalyst women need to discuss more freely about the issues that plague them. We hope that by creating a dialogue a lot of issues that women face such as not enough opportunities, wage discrepancies and lack of representation will at least be talked about if not fixed instantly. We hope this project can be a contribution towards making the lives of women in the workplace a little bit easier.


International Integrated Design

Art des Projekts

Studienarbeit im Masterstudium


foto: uwe gellert

Zugehöriger Workspace

MAID Studio WS22/23 Better Work


Wintersemester 2022 / 2023