Building Capital: Ownership as Equity

Learn how the profession can help correct inequities caused and perpetuated by structural wealth gaps.


One of the terrible legacies of slavery takes the form of a wealth gap: According to the Brookings Institution, “At $171,000, the net worth of a typical white family is nearly ten times greater than that of a Black family ($17,150) in 2016.” There’s a generational wealth gap as well: Boomers control nearly 60% of the nation’s wealth, while Millennials’ share is 3%. The profession can help correct those imbalances through fair pay, ESOPs, unionization, cooperatives, and other strategies.

Learning objectives

  • Learn how to make your firm less financially precarious.
  • Understand how to cooperate with other firms to put architecture on a stronger footing.
  • Learn how to make your firm more democratic and open to diversity.
  • Learn how to invest in a more community-based approach to design.
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  • RIBA


  • Peggy Deamer

    Professor Emerita | Yale University School of Architecture

    Principal | Deamer, Studio

    Founding member | Architecture Lobby

    Peggy Deamer is Professor Emerita of Yale University’s School of Architecture and principal in the...