Industry Coalition Readies 2023 DEI Census

A coalition of global marketing and advertising organizations including The World Federation of Advertisers are leading an effort to conduct an industry DEI census for 2023.

Marketing and advertising pros around the world are being asked to share their views on the state of diversity, equity and inclusion in the industry and can participate in a survey that can be accessed here. The questionnaire is the same as the one led in the UK by the Advertising Association, IPA and ISBA as the All In Census but with adaptations for legal and cultural reasons and will be driven by local industry coalitions in 33 markets. (A shorter version of the survey is available in English in other markets.)

According to the groups involved, the goal is to “measure the state of diversity, equity and inclusion in the marketing and advertising industry, as well as people’s sense of belonging, the absence of discrimination and presence of negative behaviors.” It will be used to measure progress since the last census the group undertook in 2021.



The survey questionnaire is anonymous, covering participants’ demographic profiles including race, ethnicity, religion, age (in accordance with local legal frameworks) as well as their experiences at their place of work. 

It will be open for responses from today through April 15. The results are due to be released in June.

The DEI census conducted in 2021 found that one in seven professionals said that they would likely leave their company and the industry because of a lack of diversity and inclusion. It also identified that the most common forms of discrimination were experienced on the basis of gender, age and caregiving responsibilities as well as on the basis of race, ethnicity and disability. The full results and analysis from that census, which covered 27 markets and attracted more than 10,000 responses, can be seen here.

After the release of that report the WFA has published a Charter for Change, outlining how global organizations can take steps to drive more diverse, equitable and inclusive workplaces. 

So far, more than 100 organizations have pledged to promote and help support the initiative, making it the biggest collaboration to date by the industry, according to the WFA.

“Our industry is facing a well-documented talent crisis,” stated Stephan Loerke, WFA CEO.” Ensuring our industry is more diverse, equitable and inclusive will go a long way to addressing this challenge. There are clear moral and business cases for why our industry must better reflect the diversity of consumer we all aim to reach. This is why this exercise is so critical,”  

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