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December 13, 2017 • New York, NY

DigitasLBi Joins Consortium to Solve for Inclusion and Diversity in Marketing and Media

Initiative developed by She Runs It™ and Diversity Best Practices is the first to be underpinned by data and measurement

The marketing and media industry is coalescing around a new initiative called the Inclusion and Diversity Accountability Consortium (IDAC), which has been launched by She Runs It™ and Diversity Best Practices. Based on the principle of “what gets measured, gets done,” the initiative seeks to ignite quantitative action that will make the marketing and media industry more diverse in its make-up and sensibility. 

The movement has already enlisted initial champions including Blue 449, DigitasLBi, Estee Lauder, Fullscreen, GroupM, KBS, Leo Burnett, L’Oreal, Publicis Communications, SapientRazorfish, Starcom USA and Unilever, with several other companies to follow.

“The desire and intention to solve for diversity and inclusion in this industry is sincere across all stakeholders, but companies struggle to make meaningful progress,” said Lynn Branigan, President and CEO of She Runs It. “Even across our own [She Runs It] community I am aware that we need to champion a more diverse population and move beyond a single dimension of diversity as it relates to gender. We believe this initiative is additive to others, and that the actions required of consortium participants will move us from preaching to practice to progress as we isolate and attack the obstacles that have made true diversity elusive for our industry.”

Built to produce and measure results, the initiative requires that consortium participants commit to three key actions:

  • Participation in an annual benchmarking study – the DBP Inclusion Index, administered by Diversity Best Practices and the Working Mother Research Institute. The Diversity Best Practices (DBP) Inclusion Index was created to drive change and help organizations accelerate progress in diversity and inclusion. The Index application helps companies target their efforts to understand gaps and provide specific strategies and programs, tools and resources to help raise the bar on D&I strategies. It was developed to focus on the best practices that are proven to have impact and that will encourage companies to take action.
  • Executive presence at quarterly roundtable discussions specifically organized to confront nagging challenges and surface solutions. Diversity Best Practices and other diversity experts will facilitate these Thought Leadership Roundtables by providing provocateurs and guiding conversations that give companies high-level insights and tools they need to create more diverse and inclusive cultures. The first Thought Leadership Roundtable will take place at in Q1 2018.
  • Implementation (maintenance) of company-specific initiatives to recruit, retain and advance diverse talent, including the enactment of policies and programs that drive positive impact, foster inclusive cultures, create open dialogue for greater understanding, build trust, encourage compassion and tackle unconscious bias.

"The advertising and marketing industries would significantly benefit by ensuring that their cultures are inclusive and their employee base is diverse and representative of the growing and changing marketplace and consumer base,” said Deborah Munster, executive director for Diversity Best Practices. “This initiative is a measurable call to action and increased education for the marketing and media industry to put a strategic roadmap and accountability tool in place to create and measure meaningful progress. We applaud those companies and leaders who are taking these inaugural steps with us, and we welcome all others who want to see this initiative succeed.”

The Consortium is open to all industry executives who are willing to commit to the obligations, including the roundtable discussions, the benchmarking research and the corporate practices and policies. Interested leaders can get more information or join the movement by sending an email to IDAC@sherunsit.org, or logging into sherunsit.org/IDAC. The 2018 DBP Inclusion Index application process will open on Monday, Dec 18th, 2017.

About She Runs It

Founded in 1912 as Advertising Women of New York (formerly AWNY), She Runs It is a not-for-profit organization that exists to pave the way for more women to lead at every level of marketing and media. With chapters in New York and Chicago, membership stands at over 2,500 women, men and corporate alliance partners.  To learn more about She Runs It, visit Sherunsit.org. 

About Diversity Best Practices

Diversity Best Practices, a division of Working Mother Media, is the preeminent organization for mid to large size organizational diversity thought leaders to share best practices and develop innovative solutions for culture change. Through research, resources, benchmarking, consultative services, publications and events, Diversity Best Practices offers organizational members information and strategies on how to implement, grow, measure and create first-in-class diversity programs.

For more information:

Cheri Carpenter

She Runs It



Andrea Kaplan

Diversity Best Practices



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