Here come the… no, sorry girls

The latest IPA census reveals a UK advertising industry making some modest moves towards diversity, but one where creative departments are still largely for the boys

Still from Mother’s Boots campaign

The latest IPA census reveals a UK advertising industry making some modest moves towards diversity, but one where creative departments are still largely for the boys

Although 49% of all those employed by member agencies of the IPA are women, that figure drops to just 24% of copywriters and art directors. Digital is even worse with women making up just 18% of digital creatives.

Women do feature more prominently in creative services (54%) and in TV production (62%).

However, there has been a 59% year-on-year increase in the numbers of women in senior positions – CEO/MD and chair – where they now account for 21.5% of the workforce. And, overall, the number of women working in the industry has gone above 10,000 for the first time.

In terms of ethnic diversity – a topic which the IPA recently hosted a debate on – the picture is slightly better than last year. The proportion of agency employees from a non-white background has increased by 12.8% year-on-year, from 9.4% in 2011 to 10.6% in 2012. More encouraging is the longer term change – a 29% increase over the last five years from 8.2% in 2008. According to the most recent census (2001), only 7.9% of the UK population is officially classed as non-white.

The industry is still overwhelmingly young – the average age being just 34. And overall numbers are now up to pre-recession levels, with the industry employing a total of 20,491 people. Creatives (copywriters and art directors) make up 9% of that total at just 1,809 people. 254 people work as ‘digital creatives’ and 611 as designers.

Full details here


CR In print

In our December issue we look at why carpets are the latest medium of choice for designers and illustrators. Plus, Does it matter if design projects are presented using fake images created using LiveSurface and the like? Mark Sinclair looks in to the issue of mocking-up. We have an extract from Craig Ward’s upcoming book Popular Lies About Graphic Design and ask why advertising has been so poor at preserving its past. Illustrators’ agents share their tips for getting seen and we interview maverick director Tony Kaye by means of his unique way with email. In Crit, Guardian economics leader writer Aditya Chakrabortty review’s Kalle Lasn’s Meme Wars and Gordon Comstock pities brands’ long-suffering social media managers. In a new column on art direction, Paul Belford deconstructs a Levi’s ad that was so wrong it was very right, plus, in his brand identity column, Michael Evamy looks at the work of Barcelona-based Mario Eskenazi. And Daniel Benneworth-Gray tackles every freelancer’s dilemma – getting work.

Our Monograph this month, for subscribers only, features the EnsaïmadART project in which Astrid Stavro and Pablo Martin invited designers from around the world to create stickers to go on the packaging of special edition packaging for Majorca’s distinctive pastry, the ensaïmada, with all profits going to a charity on the island (full story here)

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