The Global DEI Census 2023 – which will investigate the state of diversity, equity and inclusion in the marketing industry – is due to go live around the world on 15 March at https://wfanet.org/census in 34 markets. Here is what you need to know about its objectives and how to get involved.
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What is the objective?
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 and absence of discrimination, in order to monitor progress on the results of the inaugural 2021 census and identify key areas where change is needed.
The 2023 research will have 34 focus markets, however anyone, irrespective of the country they’re based in, can share their experiences by filling in the anonymous survey.
The focus markets for this year’s wave are Argentina, Brazil, Canada, Finland, Germany, Greece, Hong Kong, SAR, Italy, Ireland, India, Japan, Malaysia, New Zealand, Netherlands, Norway, Pakistan, Philippines, Poland, Portugal, Singapore, Slovenia, South Africa, Spain, Sweden, Switzerland, Turkey, the Gulf Cooperation Council (Bahrain, Kuwait, Oman, Qatar, Saudi Arabia, UAE), and USA.
The research will run alongside UK’s All In Census led by the Advertising Association, IPA and ISBA and is based on the same questionnaire.
How to get involved?
Anyone working in the marketing and advertising industry can fill in the survey. To participate, members of the industry will have to complete a 15-minute global questionnaire covering their demographic profile including race/ethnicity, religion, age (in accordance with local legal frameworks) as well as their experiences at their place of work.
The Census will be open for responses for four weeks, up until April 15, and the results are due to be released in June 2023 and will be used to showcase areas of progress as well as highlighting areas where performance may have slipped back.
Who is running the census?
The initiative is supported by a coalition of 10 global marketing and advertising organisations – WFA, VoxComm, Campaign, Kantar, Advertising Week, Cannes Lions, Effie Worldwide, IAA, Global Web Index (GWI) and Adweek – and will be driven by local industry coalitions driven by advertiser and agency associations in the 34 focus markets.
The project has also been backed by leading companies from across the marketing and advertising ecosystem, including Bayer, BP, Danone, Diageo, Dentsu, The Estée Lauder Companies, Haleon, Havas, KraftHeinz, L’Oréal, McCann, Meta, Philips, Reckitt, Sanofi, WPP.
International industry associations will help drive responses from their members, including the Global TV Group, the World Radio Alliance, the European Association of Communications Agencies (EACA), the European Interactive Digital Advertising Alliance (EDAA), EGTA - the European association representing TV and radio sales houses), the Federation of European Data and Marketing (FEDMA), European Publishers Council (EPC), the International Council for Ad Self-Regulation (ICAS) and the European Advertising Standards Alliance (EASA).
So far, more than 100 organisations have pledged to promote and help support the initiative, making it the biggest collaboration to date by the industry.
Will anyone know what I’ve said?
The survey is conducted on a completely anonymous basis. Responses will be combined with others across the advertising industry and never reported individually. They will be stored securely, and we will not seek to identify anyone from their responses. Participants are under no obligation to answer any question; every question has the option to select “Prefer not to answer” if respondents do not feel comfortable answering. We just ask that anything people do answer, they answer in a truthful way.
The questionnaire has been signed off by Kantar's lawyers, local lawyers and with our national advertiser associations in order to ensure compliance with legal requirements and cultural sensitivities.
About the Global DEI Census 2021
Conducted in 2021, Wave 1 saw more than 160 organisations promote the initiative, making it the single biggest industry collaboration to date. The research identified that the key areas where there was the most significant difference in lived experience were based around people’s caregiving responsibilities (those looking after the young, the elderly or the sick), age and gender as well as ethnicity and disability.
It also found that one in seven people would consider leaving their company or the industry due to a lack of diversity and inclusion, going up to one in four in some markets. The full results and analysis from Wave 1, which covered 27 markets and attracted more than 10,000 responses, can be seen here.
Since the first global Census, the WFA has published a Charter for Change, outlining how marketers can take key steps to improve knowledge of their specific challenges as well as experiences for members of their organisations.