Equality, Diversity, and the Creative Case

A Data Report, 2015-2016

Arts Council England

From the report's "Executive Summary":

"This is our second annual report on diversity. It provides us with a picture of diversity within the workforce, leadership and audiences of our National Portfolio Organisations and Major Partner Museums. It also shows our progress on ensuring diversity within our programmes and among those who access our funds. In addition it reports on the diversity profile of the Arts Council’s workforce. Diversity is built into all our funding streams. We require funded organisations to have equality plans to address diversity in the workforce, leadership and audiences and we also ask that they apply the Creative Case for Diversity within their programming and collections.

Last year we launched a suite of diversity-focused strategic funds. The total we are investing this year is £11.8 million. This report illustrates the work of our four principal diversity strategic funds; it also shows how all our strategic funds are helping to shape a more diverse environment.

This year we have made changes to the way we gather data. First, we have led a consultation with the sector to review our definition of “diverse led” organisations. In response to this we have made two key changes to this definition:

a) Our previous definition of “diverse led” organisations included both “Black and minority ethnic led” and “disability led”. We have now extended our definition to include “female led” and “LGBT led” organisations.

b) We have also given the opportunity to organisations to self-define as “diverse led” based on who is making the key strategic decisions within an organisation. This means that we can now report on both the number of diverse led organisations where 51 per cent or more of the board and senior management team are Black and minority ethnic, disabled, female led or LGBT and those organisations that self-define as diverse led based on the background of key strategic decision makers within the organisation.

Secondly, we have widened types of employment that we gather data on, so that we now include volunteers and temporary contract workers among the categories of staff. This has given us a more detailed and useful picture about diversity, but restricts our ability to make direct comparison between annual figures, as criteria within the data may vary. While the broad framework remains the same, it does not allow us to compare workforce data for 2014/15 to 2015/16.

No further changes to the survey are planned during the current funding agreement cycle, so this year’s figures are a baseline for future surveys. We recognise that as a sector we need to better capture and report on diversity data. There is still a high volume of “unknown information” and “prefer not to say” responses being received, making it difficult to provide a complete picture of the diversity of the workforce and boards across the National Portfolio.

Headline figures - From data submitted by National Portfolio Organisations in 2015/16, we see that:

  • 17 per cent of the workforce is Black and minority ethnic
  • 4% self-defined as disabled
  • 55 per cent of the workforce are female
  • the most represented age group is aged between 20 and 34, making up 29 per cent of the workforce

From data submitted by Major Partner Museums, we see that:

  • 7 per cent of the workforce is Black and minority ethnic
  • 4% self-defined as disabled
  • 62 per cent are female
  • the most represented age group is aged between 20 and 34, making up 17 per cent of the workforce"