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Our History

The International Archive of Women in Architecture (IAWA) was established in 1985 as a joint program of the College of Architecture and Urban Studies and the University Libraries at Virginia Tech. The purpose of the Archive is to document the history of women's contributions to the built environment by collecting, preserving, and providing access to the records of women's architectural organizations and the professional papers of women architects, landscape architects, designers, architectural historians and critics, and urban planners.

The IAWA collections have always been open to scholars, students, and public researchers around the world. Historically, this meant traveling to Virginia Tech and visiting the University Libraries’ Special Collections Department to see materials in person. Through this website, today’s researchers also have access to a growing library of digitized documents and visual materials from the IAWA collections. 

What We Collect

Today, the IAWA documents the legacies of more than 435 individuals, firms, organizations, and exhibits from the 1890s through the present day. The permanent collections include approximately 2000 cubic feet of documents, photographs and negatives, architectural drawings, sketches, scrapbooks, building models, presentation boards, and other materials that capture the creative process. The IAWA also collects books, biographical information, and other published materials as part of its mission to act as a clearinghouse of information about the global history of women in architecture.

Women who are interested in enhancing the historic record of architecture and related design professions should visit the Special Collections donations page or contact the IAWA Archivist for more information about donating materials to the IAWA.

Learn More

Are you starting a new research project? Check out our guide to conducting research in the IAWA collections: http://guides.lib.vt.edu/iawa/home

To learn more about the IAWA - including the collections not yet available online - please visit our main website: http://spec.lib.vt.edu/iawa

To learn more about the work of the IAWA Center, please visit the Center's site: http://archdesign.vt.edu/programs/iawa