- Tech workers take a bleaker view on gender diversity in the media than many other sectors – such as media and marketing (64% believe women are underrepresented), manufacturing (66%) and healthcare (67%)
- 18% think that the media is not doing enough to address the gender imbalance in its reporting
Three quarters (75%) of those working in the technology industry in the UK believe that women are underrepresented in the media, according to new research, with almost 1 in 5 tech workers (18%) agreeing that the media needs to do more to address the gender imbalance in its reporting.
18% said it was at least 4 days since they had last seen a woman positioned as an expert commentator in the media, with over 1 in 10 (13%) saying they don’t even remember the last time it was.
The research, which explored opinions from across a number of industry sectors including technology (IT and telecoms), also revealed respondents’ perceptions of negative stereotyping by gender.
When asked about the terms they most associated with the portrayal of women in the media, ‘celebrity’ (20%) and ‘polite’ (21%) were among the most popular terms – all more commonly associated terms than ‘expert’ (14%) or ‘leader’ (15%).
The research was commissioned by Common Industry to mark the launch of rePResent, its new initiative aimed at tackling imbalanced gender representation in the media.
Commenting on the findings, Harriet Allner, Account Director at Common Industry, said: “We know that gender representation in the media is far from balanced. Things are improving, but there’s still a long way to go, as our research highlights. As communications experts working within the tech sector, we’re in a position to change this – after all, we put people forward every day to speak on television, radio, across the press and podcasts and much more. We can curate change.”
Common Industry’s rePResent wants to see significant steps taken towards a more balanced representation of gender in the media in the next five years. It aims to drive a positive conversation around gender representation and diversity. By working with female business leaders and founders, journalists and editors, the initiative aims to ensure communications professionals are part of the solution, closing the gap between businesses and the media.
Allner comments: “At Common Industry, we’re passionate in our belief that for every story of women’s struggle there should be a story of women’s success. That those speaking on behalf of industries, businesses and causes should be representative and equal. But we also know that it’s not just up to journalists and editors – or even the business community. People working in PR – in-house and at agencies – have a huge part to play. That’s why we’re launching rePResent. To help pave the way towards equal representation in the media. To play our part in creating the future. After all: you can’t be what you can’t see.”