BBC cites ‘remarkable’ progress in 50:50 gender balance project

BBC cites ‘remarkable’ progress in 50:50 gender balance project

The BBC has made headway in its efforts to address its on-air gender inbalance according to the broadcaster's own statistics.

Director general Tony Hall has cited ‘remarkable change’ over the past year since the introduction of its 50:50 project, which obliges staff and producers to monitor the gender balance of guests to achieve gender parity.

Of 70 programmes participating in the scheme, including flagship shows such as BBC Breakfast, The Andrew Marr Show and Politics Live, the proportion hitting an equal gender split rocketed up from just 27% to 74% following the introduction of the monitoring system.

Particular progress has been made at BBC Sport News which has traditionally had the greatest gender imbalances but even here the proportion of female views has jumped from 20 to 43%.

Despite making headway some formats continue to miss the equality goal; notably Newsnight and some World Service output.

Hall said: “It’s amazing to see such a remarkable change in just a year; you can see and hear it right across our programming. I want the BBC to lead the way on equality and fairness, and this project demonstrates what can be achieved.”

Since the project's launch hundreds more programmes have accepted the challenge, including BBC One’s Songs of Praise and All Together Now. Other media organisations such as The Financial Times, ABC News and STV have also now signed up to replicate the project.

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