Next Wednesday I’m speaking at the Centre for Gender Research, part of Norwegian University of Science and Technology, in Trondheim Norway.
Wish me lykke til.
My presentation explores 5 years of Red Books (Standard Directory of Advertising Agencies) data regarding the gendered composition of advertising creative departments worldwide. Using data from 50 countries and regions, from 2012 through 2016, the study reveals embedded and systemic global gender segregation in advertising creative department. This work is framed by signaling, critical mass and creative system’s theories. It demonstrates pervasive and systemic horizontal and vertical gender segregation within advertising creative departments. Specifically, these data quantify the underrepresentation of women in advertising creative departments, demonstrating a global average of only 23.5% women working within advertising creative departments, and with only 16.1% women in creative management. I will also drill down on data from Scandinavian countries and include qualitative data from a recently published study on Swedish women working in advertising creative women. Trend analyses predict a modest increase in women creatives in advertising creative departments in the coming years – but, I’d say, the only way to go is up.
Today 180 women from advertising’s C-suites partnered with Time’s Up to form Time’s Up/Advertising. In their open letter to the industry they said, in part, “it’s on us to foster a workplace where people are challenged but still respected. Sexual harassment is not OK. Never. No exceptions. No amount of talent, missed cues, or being great in the room unchecks the No Sexual Harassment box.” Their mission:
“To drive new policies, practices, decisions and tangible actions that result in more balanced, diverse and accountable leadership; address workplace discrimination, harassment and abuse; and create equitable and safe cultures within our agencies.”
Community meetings will be held May 14 in New York, Los Angeles and Chicago in which all women in advertising are invited with three goals in mind:
Commit to creating solutions that work, starting with examining the processes and policies that have failed us.
Identify and mentor people representing diversity across the board and who are ready to become agency leaders.
Adoption of progressive agency training and education that brings this discussion and its solutions out into the open in our agencies.
It’s been a long time coming. Now let’s keep it going. #TIMESUPADVERTISING
Okay US ad industry – what about you?