ADA to Lead Gender Equality Mentor Program for Design Fringe

DESIGN FRINGE EOI for 2022 program

ADA director Anne-Maree Sargeant will lead the gender equality mentor program for Design Fringe.

The Naomi Milgrom Foundation powers Design Fringe for Gender Equality with the Victorian Women’s Trust, run by the Melbourne Fringe Festival.



To encourage more balanced gender representation for exhibitors at the annual Fringe Furniture program, now Design Fringe – female and non-binary entrants receive a 14.5% entry fee discount on participation fees. This amount is based on the Australian wage gap reported by the government in May 2018.

Over two years, the exhibition had a spike in non-male entrants of almost  30%!

Expanding support for improved equality, Design Fringe introduced a mentoring program. Mentorships for the 2021 and 2022 recipients will be run concurrently during this year and overseen by the Authentic Design Alliance and will be announced in early March.

Having been an ambassador for Fringe Furniture to support and encourage gender equity since 2018, I’m proud to lead to an initiative spotlighting important issues surrounding representation and wage parity. 

Throughout the program, we will open these discussions to the broader community to encourage equality and opportunities for female and non-binary designers. 

Anne-Maree Sargeant, Authentic Design Alliance

Australia Council gender pay gap for Australian creativesHARD FACTS

In December 2022, the Australia Council released the outcomes of the gender parity report for Australian arts practitioners. The survey found that the average income of non-male creatives falls well below the national average.

Read the Australia Council summary and download the report here

The gender pay gap in the Australian workforce indicates a significant income disadvantage for female workers compared to males across virtually all industries. 

The current national Australian gender pay gap is 14.1% (based on full-time average weekly earnings as of May 2022).

The gender pay gap for Arts and Recreation Services (the broader category within which practising artists sit) is reported as 7.2% (as at May 2022).

The overall gender pay gap for the Australian workforce has narrowed somewhat over time, down from nearly 18% in 2011, but has not closed completely.

Australia Council, Gender Pay gap report, December 2022

Learn more – here 

Entries for Design Fringe 2023 open in April; register interest to exhibit – here

Related Posts