The Sir Lenny Henry Centre for Media Diversity is an independent body drawing on the work and experience of media professionals and academics to track the progress of media diversity in the UK.
In 2021, the Centre was shortlisted for a Times Higher Education award for Outstanding Contribution to Equality, Diversity and Inclusion.
The Centre believes that accurate representation of all sections of society in all layers of the UK media is vital for the health of the industry. We also believe it’s crucial in ensuring a functioning democracy and enabling critical human rights issues, such as freedom of expression, to be truly implemented.
The Centre aims to critically analyse policies in the media industry with a view to increasing diversity and inclusion, improving policy decisions and spreading best practice.
To achieve these aims the Centre will:
- Regularly analyse diversity statistics published by broadcasters, trade bodies and other stakeholders - from numerous annual reports to other industry publications and surveys - to track progress across the industry
- Examine diversity statistics deficits, making recommendations for new data collection and how statistics should be reported and presented
- Critically analyse policy announcements made by broadcasters and other industry stakeholders to increase diversity and their effectiveness by using the latest academic research and the experience of senior practitioners
- Present the latest research on diversity in the media industry to inform industry best practice and share policies or other approaches which increase representation in the media
- Systematically archive media diversity initiatives, publications and important milestone events to serve as institutional memory for the entire industry
- Commission and coordinate new and novel research into media diversity
The Centre comprises a core group of Sir Lenny Henry and Marcus Ryder MBE, both visiting Professors at BCU, Marverine Duffy who runs the School of Media’s BA Journalism programmes and the Centre’s Director Professor Diane Kemp.
Marcus Ryder is also the Head of External Consultancies at the Centre.
The core group will be supported by an advisory group whose composition will reflect the Centre’s focus each year.