24 November, 2020
Still a long way to go
At a time when democracy is facing significant challenges in Europe and levels of trust in media sources vary greatly at the country level, the topic of diversity and gender equality, enhanced by recent social movements, remains more important than ever.
This news item is a opportunity to highlight the publication of recent reports on diversity and gender equality and announce the upcoming workshop on diversity of the European Audiovisual Observatory.
The fifth review of the implementation of the Beijing Platform for Action in the EU Members States
Launched in 1995 by UN Women, the Beijing declaration and Platform for Action, agreed by 189 Governments, made comprehensive commitments under 12 critical areas of concern.
This new report, presented around five key pillars [gender inequalities in the economy, gender-responsive public infrastructure, social protection and services, freedom from gender-based violence, stereotypes and stigma, parity democracy, accountability and gender-responsive institutions, peaceful and inclusive societies], analyses the progress made regarding long-standing challenges and assesses new challenges emerged from the current context such as digitisation with a focus on trends observed since 2013.
In the media sector, the study highlighted in particular the persisting gender stereotypes in media and education and the ‘lack of EU-wide comparable data on a range of gender-related issues’ in the sector.
it is also worth noting that women only represent 30% of media regulatory authorities employees.
French-speaking Community of Belgium: The CSA’s report on off-screen gender equality
The CSA has released the results of a heavy and long investigation on off-screen gender equality aimed at identifying the obstacles and on-going mechanisms in the audiovisual industry and their impact on the careers of women.
The report is based on four main pillars: access to power, horizontal segregation, the work-life balance and the forms of sexism, discrimination and violence against women in the audiovisual industry.
In the audiovisual industry of the French-speaking Community of Belgium, women clearly remain less represented at a higher evel of hierarchy (around 20%) and for technical jobs (around 20% as well).
The ‘Baromètre de la diversité’ of the French CSA
In September 2020, the French CSA released its annual ‘media diversity barometer’ on television based on data collected during the year 2019. Launched more than ten years ago, this barometer provides an assessment of the efforts and measures undertaken by the broadcasters in terms of on-screen diversity.
Among the main key findings of this year, it can be noted that:
- Low visibility of young and elderly people;
- An overrepresentation of the most economically privileged socio-professional categories;
- A decreasing representation of ‘nonwhite’ people while a positive trend as regard to the part played in programmes;
- A quasi absence of people with disabilities;
- A persisting underrepresentation of women.
UK: Ofcom's diversity and equal opportunities in TV and radio 2019/2020
On 25 November 2020, Ofcom reported on the progress made by TV broadcasters with regard to off screen diversity and equal opportunities in the UK. For the first time, the monitoring of diversity and equal opportunities in the TV and radio industries are dealt with in a single report.
Despite remarking on some progress in the collection of data, a positive trend in the employment of a greater proportion of women, minority ethnic people and disabled people compared to last year, and the effort of the broadcasters to diversify their workforce and be more inclusive, Ofcom points out that progress is too slow and that some groups remain consistently under-represented:
- Disabled people are under-represented at all organisational levels;
- Minority ethnic people, especially black people, are under-represented in senior management across the industry
For next year, Ofcom expects progress in three key areas:
- addressing critical under-representation,
- understanding class and geographic diversity
The European Audiovisual Observatory’s workshop: Diversity and inclusion in the European audiovisual industries: both on and off-screen
Date: 10 December 2020, 15.00 – 17.00 (CET)
‘How can Europe ensure better respect of diversity and inclusion in its cinema, television and VOD industries?’
The European Audiovisual Observatory is organising an online public workshop ‘to look at strategies and challenges for increasing diversity and inclusion in the European audiovisual industries: both off-screen and on-screen’.