A scan of the magazine and website found that from September 2016–December 2017, 62% of our contributors were male, 38% were female and 8% were BME.
We challenged ourselves to do more and so partnered with organisations that looked to promote diversity issues such as LGBT and BME and worked hard to ensure our contributor base continued to widen.
We now have the results from our attempts to improve diversity.
Some months have been better than others. But overall, we are happy that from January to November 2018, we have had an overall 52% female and 48% male contributor split.
This was reflected in the magazine too, with 51% of contributors being female and 49% being male.
Interestingly, what we have found is that we are now publishing higher quality and more considered comment pieces.
We have never offered a comment to someone as a token gesture, but by thinking harder about who we want to contribute, we have found the standard has improved.
In terms of BME contributors, we were told 14% was a good target to aim for.
In the overall statistics for the magazine and for the combined website and magazine totals, we were under that target.
In the magazine statistics, we were 5% under and for the combined yearly total, we were 3% under.
Encouragingly, the 11% is 3% higher than the level we were at last year and BME contributors to the website was bang on 14%.
Last year we said we wanted to “revisit this piece in a year’s time and say we have helped to improve this issue and provided a better reflection of society”.
Have we achieved that? No, not just yet.
But we are getting there and are determined to do better. Over the past year we have seen new contributors with a focus on diversity. We know this will only continue.
Thank you to everyone who has supported us so far. Unless we all work together to help deliver this change, this golden opportunity will fall by the wayside.