Gender equality in the media sector

Gender inequality is clearly visible within the media industry. Even though an increasing number of women are studying and entering the journalism profession, they continue to face significant barriers to safety, support and career progression, and remain underrepresented in the sector. A study by IWMF shows that women make up about a third (35%) of the journalism workforce worldwide, and hold just over a quarter (27%) of top management positions. Women’s journalism is often linked to ‘soft topics’, like health and social issues. Meanwhile men are more likely to report on ‘hard topics’ that are deemed more important, such as politics and the economy.

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The Global Report on the Status of Women in the News Media by IWMF provides a comprehensive overview of the position of women in news media.
Infographic by UN Women, 2018

Sexism and sexual harassment exist within many newsroom cultures, making it difficult, and at times unsafe, for women to go about their daily work. Women face greater pressures than men to look and dress a certain way, especially when working in television.

It is important to create enabling environments that allow all employees, regardless of gender, to carry out their work in a professional and safe manner. Explore this page to learn more about different strategies to promote gender equality in the workplace, and to support the safety, skills and leadership of women journalists.

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The Global Investigative Journalism Network compiled an overview of key resources for women journalists, including grants, networks, mentoring opportunities and safety guides.

The AGEMI platform has a learning unit on gendered journalism cultures.

New publication

Free Press Unlimited published the report Good for business or ‘the right thing to do’? – Motivations and strategies of media managers to promote gender equality in the workplace.

This research explores what motivates managers of news outlets around the world to promote gender equality in the workplace. It also explores the strategies that managers use to implement their commitment to gender equality and the results of these efforts.

Gender equality in the workplace

What can employers do to promote gender equality in the workplace?

Skills and leadership of women journalists

Building the skills and leadership of women journalists.

Safety of women journalists

Enhancing online and offline safety of women journalists.