News and events
Adam Crozier announces ITV's Chairship of the CDN
Thursday 31st January
Adam Crozier, Chief Executive of ITV, said:
"For the broadcast industry, there is a compelling business case for making sure we are representing and engaging our viewers with content that speaks to them. Equally, attracting diverse talent to the industry is vital for creativity.
"ITV is looking forward to working with all members to ensure there is a clear positioning for the CDN and to seek wider engagement with the industry on what the key diversity priorities should be going forward."
Doorways to Digital Workshop - Friday 14th December 2012
Wednesday 19th December 2012
The BBC recently hosted the CDN at a 'Doorways to Digital' event.
The session was produced by Chantal Badjie (BBC Diversity) and Simone Pennant (TV Collective).
There are links below to available resources from the day. We shall add more podcasts when these have been edited so please check back on this page soon.
- Simone Pennant, The TV Collective, on creating an online community. Listen to Simone's podcast.
- Nick Hall, Director of Operations, Digital Media, Endemol, on his role at Endemol and job families in digital content production. Download Nick's presentation.
- Leon Benjamin at Virgin Media on how to effectively brand yourself online via LinkedIn, blogs and Twitter. Download Leon's presentation.
- Jo Haslam, Multi-platform Commissioner at Channel 4, also spoke and ran an interactive session on driving online usage.
Podcast production by The Podcast Company www.thepodcastcompany.co.uk
International Day of Disabled People
29th November 2012
BBC Diversity Centre is marking the International Day of Disabled people with a series of posters aimed at all staff aimed at promoting the ways in which the BBC is breaking down barriers to employment and on screen opportunities for disabled people.
Find out more at the BBC Diversity Centre
An evening of celebration at the Hackney Empire - The CDN Diversity Awards 2012
Monday 19th November
At November's 2012 Creative Diversity Network Awards, the television industry reaffirmed its commitment to diversity with its annual awards for excellence in diverse content or off screen initiatives.
BBC Acting Director General Tim Davie hosted the awards at the Hackney Empire in East London alongside Amanda Rice Head of BBC Diversity. Davie praised the work of the broadcasters for their behind the scenes initiatives like the Hackney Weekend (Radio1) project and indie company Shine's 'The Hatch' project which aims to give young marginalised people the opportunity to work on media production. Entertainment was provided by Shappi Khorsandi and Stephen K Amos.
"I've been coming to similar events for years but this year it really feels like we're winning on diversity" said Channel 4 presenter Krishnan Guru Murthy presenter of the Factual Award.
CDN Awards Creative Lead and BBC Diversity Manager, Chantal Badjie said: "we wanted this year's awards to feel celebratory, entertaining and yet give a serious message. Based on the feedback from the audience and our partners across the CDN, it looks like we achieved that"
Read the full list of nominees and winners here
Creative Diversity Network 2012 Awards Nominations Announced
Friday 9th November
This year's Creative Diversity Network (CDN) awards, anchored by BBC News presenter Jane Hill, will take place on Thursday 15th November at the Hackney Empire. The awards ceremony will celebrate content that embraces onscreen diversity, outstanding breakthrough individual talent as well as off-air and behind the scenes activity across the broadcasting industry.
ITV Regional News teams lead the way for nominations in this year's Best News Coverage category with Channel 4, Sky, independent production companies and the BBC also well represented across the different categories for these cross broadcast industry awards. Also to be revealed on the night is the winner of the Radio Times Soap Award which has been voted for by the public.
This year's award presenters include Channel 4's Krishnan Guru-Murthy; comedian and actor Lenny Henry; anti-racism campaigner Doreen Lawrence, Professor Mary Beard (BBC2 Meet The Romans), Cerrie Burnell (BBC) as well as actors Chris Bisson (ITV's Emmerdale); Charlie Condou (ITV's Coronation Street) and TV presenter Angellica Bell.
The Creative Diversity Network (CDN) is a partnership of broadcasters, independent production companies and media organisations working collaboratively to support diversity across the industry.
Amanda Rice, Head of BBC Diversity and current chair of the CDN Steering Group, said:
"We want these to be the biggest and best CDN Awards yet. The diverse talent coming through onscreen is really great news for the creative industries. I'm also impressed with some of the behind-the-scenes innovative projects and activities led by the CDN partners to support diverse recruitment and talent. Obviously there is always more to do but it really feels like we are making progress"
CDN 2012 Awards – The Nominations
Best Breakthrough Onscreen Talent
- Rosie King (Newsround, BBC)
- Adam Hills (The Last Leg, Channel 4)
- Zawe Ashton (Fresh Meat, Channel 4)
Best Breakthrough Writer or Director
- Sanjeev Kohli (BBC Learning)
- Prasanna Puwanarajah (Coming Up, Channel 4)
- Rhashan Stone (City Hall, Sky Arts)
Company of the Year
- Nine Lives
- Fresh One
- Acme Films
Best Diversity Initiative
- Paralympic Games 2012: Superhuman Presenters
- The Hatch
- BBC Vision Intake Pool
Best Nations & Regions Programme
- My Lives and Times (Aconite Productions for BBC2 Scotland)
- Knockout Scousers (perfectmotion for Channel 4)
- Making Bradford British (Love Productions for Channel 4)
Best Comedy & Entertainment
- Got To Dance (Princess Productions for Sky1 HD)
- 4 o'clock Club (CBBC)
- The Last Leg (Sunset+Vine / IMG for Channel 4)
The Radio Times Soap Award - voted for by the public
- Holby City
- Coronation Street
Best News Coverage
- Meridian Tonight (ITV Meridian for ITV1)
- London Tonight (ITN for ITV London)
- London’s Young Homeless (ITN for ITV London)
Best Factual Programme
- Respect Your Elders (Dragonfly for BBC One)
- Sainsbury’s and Channel 4 Present... (IMG for Channel 4)
- Letting Go (October Films for BBC One)
2012 Award for Outstanding Achievement
The winner, chosen collectively by the CDN partners, will be announced on the night.
For more information please contact Chantal Badjie (Chantal.Badjie@bbc.co.uk) BBC Diversity, Mobile: 07738753274
Or Ben.Whybrow@bbc.co.uk BBC Press Office 0208 576 1865
Mental Health in the News and in the Newsroom, CDN Workshop July 2012
Monday 23rd July 2012
Following the workshop a resource pack was put together to support journalists, which is available via the links below.
- Key Mental Health Organisations, Research and Advice for Media Organisations
- Most Common Mental Illnesses
- Time to Change: Engaging the media
In July the CDN ran a workshop examining how news broadcasters report mental health matters. Sponsored by Robin Elias from ITV News and Steve Mitchell from BBC News, almost 70 journalists attended from across ITV News, BBC News, Sky News and Channel 4 News.
Also invited to provide specialist advice and facts were mental health stakeholders MIND, The Samaritans, Time for Change and individual mental health service users who discussed the ways in which television news broadcasts stories around mental health issues. By 2020 almost half the beds in NHS hospitals will be take up by people with some kind of mental health issue so it's a big story, yet in medical reporting terms mental health traditionally gets less news airtime than cancer or heart disease.
The group also discussed what kind of support journalists who face and are impacted by stressful situations get from within their own newsrooms. The event was chaired by disability consultant and former BBC journalist Geoff Adams-Spink who interviewed Paul Famer CEO, Mind. Gavin Rees of the Dart Centre also gave a presentation on the impact of trauma on journalists.
Chantal Badjie from the BBC's Diversity Centre said, "we aren't going to solve all the issues raised with one workshop but this was a great opportunity to get the news broadcasters and HR Managers of newsrooms together and to ask ourselves, 'how we can best tell the national mental health narrative on screen? 1 in 4 of us will face a mental health issue in our lifetimes so it's an issue that affects pretty much everybody in some way or another".
BBC's Patrick Younge on African Caribbean comedy
Monday 21st May 2012
Patrick Younge, the BBC's chief creative officer of vision productions, speaks on the possibility of reviving the beloved '90s black sitcom, but urges audiences to look forward, not backwards.
CDN launches its 2012 CDN Mentoring Scheme.
Thursday 23rd February 2012
Here's what previous mentors and mentees have said about the scheme:
- "My mentor provided objective constructive criticism about my CV, helped to improve it... Improved my networking skills and helped my confidence, I now have regular freelance work on The One Show" – Mentee 2010/11
- "Really enjoyed the process and enjoyed the challenge of providing support to someone who was looking to develop their career into another genre" – Mentor 2010/11
The closing date for applications is 2pm, Friday 18th May 2012.
Read a PDF of the evaluation of previous mentoring schemes
Amanda Rice, Head of Diversity at the BBC said:"I'm delighted the Creative Diversity Network has committed to the senior mentoring scheme for another year. Each year we learn from the previous scheme and aim to improve it. Media is a very networked industry and so mentoring becomes even more important for people who may feel they need a bit of a career and confidence turbo boost. Ideally we're talking about BME and disabled people who have already been working in the industry in some middle management or project leadership capacity and are looking for their next level. This year we are keen to see middle managers apply not only from production, although that is a key area for us of course, but also from areas like marketing and communications, audience research, HR, law, finance and other non-production areas. We are also of course looking for senior mentors from these disciplines too. So if you are out there, please tell us!"
Putting the T into LGBT History Month by Paris Lees
Friday 3rd February 2012
Research conducted in 2009 revealed that 78% of British transgender people felt that the media portrayals they saw were either inaccurate or highly inaccurate. It's a sobering statistic, and a phenomenon which television networks are starting to address. The findings were published by Trans Media Watch (TMW), a charity which calls for greater accuracy, dignity and respect for trans people. TMW was formed 3 years ago, as part of a realisation by the trans community that television coverage needed to improve. I help run TMW and, in the last 18 months, we've reached out to the BBC and other broadcasters through the Creative Diversity Network. If we want to see positive change, it's essential to work with the media.
Last year, I gave information and advice to the team behind Channel 4's My Transsexual Summer, as well as the BBC Three's recent Coming Out Diaries. Both, I believe, raised the bar for trans-themed programming. The documentaries show that good TV can also be a force for good – as evidenced by the overwhelmingly positive reaction from LGB and T people on Facebook and Twitter. The Coming Out Diaries showed the enormous problems many trans people face when revealing their gender identity to loved ones. By also featuring the "coming out" of a young lesbian, the programme contrasted the similar struggles faced by gay people. It was emotional viewing.
Aside from consultancy, some of TMW's most exciting work is done through our sister project Trans Media Action (TMA). TMA, supported by the BBC and Channel 4 and managed by the brilliant Nathalie McDermott and On Road Media. From the start, our mission was clear: find out how to change the British media! Clearly, the things we learn at this stage can only ever be stepping stones to larger, longer term projects.
Last December, following a successful debut session at Channel 4, TMA held its first workshop at the BBC. We were joined by an impressive group of in-house heavyweights, including radio commissioning editors, controller of production talent, script editors, comedy and factual producers and executive producers. For the first half of the day, I was the only trans person in the room. We didn't want the BBC staff to feel outnumbered, as it was vital that they speak freely in order to gauge their levels of awareness. Have you ever tried to explain to a room of BBC producers why some of their shows can be seen as offensive to your particular minority group? I understood why they were quick to defend their work, so it was a daunting task. After all, how could I argue with the people behind Ab Fab? With great difficulty!
Then something wonderful happened. As we were joined for the afternoon by my colleagues Sarah and Helen, plus Fox and Karen from My Transsexual Summer, we started having fun. I was privileged to see some of the corporation's great minds at work, creating new ways to tell trans people's stories. I was surprised at how quickly the team "got" what we were about, as many admitted it was a new area of expertise for them. In the end, not only did we get a good picture of where they were coming from, we also saw several projects spring up. What were they? You'll have to wait and see.
TMA's next big venture was Trans Camp. Held at Channel 4, this unique 1-day event brought together developers, designers, innovators, media professionals including from the BBC and Channel 4, and, of course, people from the trans community. We formed groups, and each team tried to find solutions to a series of key problems we'd identified. With such a wealth of intelligent, talented people, we soon came up with some fantastic ideas. My team worked on the issue of offensive headlines, and we envisaged a targeted awareness raising campaign, backed up with an easy to access web hub. Sadly, we didn't win the prize money to develop our solution, which went instead to the group working on community reporting. They came up with a brilliant game called Trango - a blend of bingo and trans - which would allow users to log instances of poor language and clichés. We're now looking at plans for Trango to be developed as an App for smartphones, where information that players enter would feed into a database mapping people's actions to media portrayals.
There were fantastic presentations from every team, but I was especially excited about the ideas which came out of the comedy strand. With the BBC's Controller of Production Talent, Ian Critchley on board, they were able to think big, and I'm thrilled that the group intends to pursue their excellent ideas over the coming months.
So what's next? During LGBT History Month, TMA will hold another workshop at the BBC, with a whole new bunch of players. After that, we'll use the vast knowledge we have gained to plan our long term strategy.
If you're interested in our work, please keep an eye on the TMA blog, follow TMA and TMW on Twitter, and join the conversation on Facebook. Still want more? Then check out TMW's website: we have support for trans people dealing with the media, as well as advice for producers and journalists.
Paris Lees is editor-in-chief at META magazine, and Projects Manager at Trans Media Watch.
CDN publishes Serving All Ages – A snapshot of age portrayal in the industry
Tuesday 31st January
Today, the CDN is publishing the findings of its research in portrayal of age in the media, "Serving All Ages".
The research was commissioned by the BBC as current chair of the Creative Diversity Network. The CDN is a partnership of media companies made up of ITV, Channel 4, Sky, ITN, S4/C, Pact, MTV, Shine Group, Media Trust, Turner and BAFTA, which exists to improve diversity across our industry.
The CDN has made public commitments to do more to serve all audiences, and understand better attitudes towards portrayal of age in the media.
Serving All Ages was carried out at the end of 2011 by NatCen Social Research. The research canvassed the opinions of the general public, the broadcast industry and people with a specific interest in the issue of age, looking at output on TV, radio and online in all UK media organisations.
The key findings are:
- People are more concerned with the portrayal of age on TV than on other platforms
- Age is considered much less of an issue on radio, as participants could not readily tell the age of contributors and would choose a radio station that reflects their needs and interests
- Younger people are most concerned with how they are portrayed on TV, and many feel they are portrayed negatively. This view was also shared by some older people
- Older people are less concerned with portrayal on TV, but some expressed a feeling of invisibility. This was particularly the case for middle aged and older women and more so in some genres (news and factual) than others
- Audiences wanted television in particular to reflect reality and wanted to avoid stereotyping and see a focus on accurate portrayal of all ages
- Industry experts focused on the need to find imaginative and creative ways to challenge existing stereotypes without being formulaic and stressed the importance of tracking and reviewing progress
Mark Thompson, BBC Director General and Chair of the CDN, said: "There are lessons here for the BBC and the rest of Britain's broadcasters. It is young people who are most concerned with the way they are portrayed and we need to look at this. But we should also note the concern, expressed by older people generally, about the need for greater visibility for older women. While of course there are many older women presenters and actors across our airwaves, this is something that needs to be addressed."
Read the full PDF report into Serving All Ages: www.bbc.co.uk/diversity/pdf/serving_all_ages30012012.pdf
Sky joins forces with MAMA Youth Project to boost diversity in the TV industry
Friday 16th December
30th November 2011: Sky has formed a partnership with charity, MAMA Youth Project, to help increase diversity within the TV industry. The joint project will see Sky sponsor twelve people aged 16-25 from minority and disadvantaged backgrounds to undergo hands on training and real-world experience working on a Sky production.
The scheme is aimed at young people from Black, Asian and Minority Ethnic (BAME) groups, disadvantaged individuals or those with limited education/employment opportunities based in London and the South East.
The twelve weeks of intensive training will be provided by MAMA Youth Project over spring 2012 and will give the participants skills in production research, camera and sound operation and video editing. This will be followed by a paid placement at one of the major independent production companies working on a Sky production over the summer.
Lucy Lumsden, Head of Comedy at Sky said: "I believe wholeheartedly that our programmes should reflect modern Britain and the rich diversity of our society, both on screen and behind the cameras. This joint initiative between ourselves and MAMA Youth Project will be the first that offers young adults a paid placement after training and so a real step up the work ladder. We hope that through this partnership we will ensure diversity in the next generation of TV producers."
Bob Clarke, CEO and Founder, at MAMA Youth Project commented: "We're really excited about the partnership with Sky and the fantastic opportunities it will create for twelve young adults to start a career in television."
Princess Productions has confirmed that it will take two of the young people to work on upcoming Sky1HD productions.
Henrietta Conrad, CEO Princess Productions said "We're delighted to being working with Sky and the MAMA Youth Project to increase the diversity in British TV and look forward to the new recruits joining us in 2012."
Sky will be further supporting the young people in their careers through additional training in core employment skills such as: Communication skills; Computer literacy; Teamwork and Collaboration and CV writing and interview technique.
MAMA Youth Project was founded and funded in 2005 by Bob Clarke with the aim of getting more ethnic minorities and white working class working in Television. Since then the charity has found work in the TV industry for 67% of its trainees and Bob has been awarded the 'Special Recognition Award' by the Creative Diversity Network.
Sky has recently committed to invest more in home grown content and as part of this is working to improve diversity both on and off screen. Throughout October Sky supported Black History month, with programming on Sky Arts, Sky Atlantic and Sky Movies and will again support International Women's Day in March 2012. Sky is also investing in the next generation of the industry through the Sky Futures scheme which gives students from more than 10 Hounslow schools the opportunity to visit Sky and take part in a one day, behind the scenes taster of life at a major broadcaster, and Fast Forward, which offers 11 month work placements for graduates from local schools. Sky is also piloting a mentoring scheme with local schools which has matched six members of staff with students to help coach them through their options when considering higher education and media industry opportunities.
The CDN and BCIDN merge to focus on diversity and identity in TV – Network agrees key priorities for years ahead
Wednesday 7th September 2011
The Cultural Diversity Network and the Broadcasting and Creative Industries Disability Network (BCIDN) have combined to become the Creative Diversity Network(CDN). The formal merger took place on Tuesday, 6th September 2011 with a new name to reflect the CDN's remit.
Clare Morrow, BCIDN Network Manager, was one of a number of speakers at the event to mark the official name change. She said: "Disability is now at the heart of the diversity agenda for all the UK's main television companies, thanks to their collective work through the Broadcasting and Creative Industries Disability Network (BCIDN). This is the right time for all strands of diversity to come together, and I'm confident the Creative Diversity Network's efforts to ensure that British television is truly representative of all sectors of the population will mean the part disabled people play in the industry continues to grow."
Mark Thompson, Chair of the CDN, said: "We're pleased to be marking this merger, as the work of the two organisations has been converging for some time. The great work started by the BCIDN will continue, and disability will remain firmly on the agenda. The newly formed Creative Diversity Network will maintain a strong focus on ethnicity, but will have a broader remit than previously to include all aspects of diversity . This broader focus is reflected in the CDN's new five year strategy which has been signed off just this week and provides a clear steer for action across the industry."