This research report updates the analysis of journalists’ diversity characteristics from 2018 to 2021. It is based on 2020 Labour Force Survey (LFS) data. It can be read in conjunction with the NCTJ’s Diversity in Journalism report, published in November 2017, and Journalists at Work, published in October 2018.
A lack of diversity within the British media continues to be a major concern in the industry and beyond.
This research, commissioned by the NCTJ, explores the possible reasons why, beginning with the ‘pipeline’ issues of how people enter journalism through higher education, and the sort of jobs they move on to after graduation.
For campaigners like the NCTJ, the diversity statistics make depressing reading. An analysis of national statistics for the NCTJ shows that five per cent of journalists working in the UK are from ethnic groups, compared to nine per cent of all jobs in the economy. Journalists are more than twice as likely to come from higher social classes than the overall population (39 per cent compared to 15 per cent).
Possible solutions to the diversity problem, the report suggests, include the increase in alternative, non-graduate means of entering the profession through apprenticeship schemes, and publicising journalism as a potential career across all areas of society. Working with employers to eliminate bias, unconscious or otherwise, is another key recommendation.
This research was updated by the NCTJ in 2021.
The Journalism Diversity Fund (JDF) awards bursaries to people from diverse backgrounds who need help funding their NCTJ journalism training.