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Australia’s comms industry unsure how to tackle diversity & inclusion


By Danielle Long | Acting APAC Editor

December 12, 2022 | 4 min read

Australian communicators lack the knowledge required to act on diversity and inclusion, according to new research.

FAIR Report

The 2022 Framework for Agency Inclusion and Representation (FAIR) Report measures the state of inclusion across the industry

The 2022 Framework for Agency Inclusion and Representation (FAIR) Report has revealed that while Australian communication experts are ready to become embrace diversity and be more inclusive, they have no idea how to begin the process.

The FAIR Report, which was compiled by RMIT University Honorary Fellow Dr Marianne Sison with the support of Agency Partner Think HQ, measures the state of cultural inclusion across the industry.

According to Dr Sison, the research revealed the significant gaps between the industry’s perceptions and practice.

“The overwhelming majority – 97% - of respondents believe organisations should prioritise cultural diversity and that cultural diversity in the industry is extremely or very important,” she said.

“But, when asked to provide some best practice examples of cultural diversity and inclusion initiatives, almost 68% could not provide a single example.”

“So, while there is a high awareness of diversity and the barriers to it within the communication industry, it’s not translating into action. Moreover, despite a growing number of practitioners from culturally diverse backgrounds, we’re still predominantly white, especially if we look at those in leadership roles,” said Sison.

The report found that multicultural communication is still viewed as an add-on to ‘mainstream’ campaigns and budgets and that communicators lack the agency to drive change within their organisations.

The report also recommends a range of actions to help promote practical change, including investment in authentic community engagement, initiatives to empower staff and build more diverse workforces, and inclusion audits of organisations.

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