UK’s Diversity Project sets new goals for investment industry

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The Diversity Project has set improved targets for the investment industry to aim to achieve over the next five years.

The project – a financial management initiative launched in 2016 to accelerate progress towards an inclusive culture – set new goals focusing on three aspects of diversity: ethnic minorities, gender and socio-economic origins. The objective is to increase representation and participation at all hierarchical levels within financial management.

The ethnicity goal is to achieve a 90% ethnicity disclosure rate over the next two years. The project will soon launch its new “90%” campaign, according to a press release.

With regard to gender, the Diversity Project has set a number of objectives: to reach 20% of female fund managers in companies, compared to 14% among large managers and 10% in small companies; that the pay gap between men and women be reduced by a third compared to their 2019 figures; and for the recruitment of an equal number of male and female graduates and high school graduates.

The socio-economic objectives of the project will be for all member companies to collect data on their staff and track promotions; for all member companies to support one or more university or high school graduate recruitment programs focused on socioeconomic diversity; and that at least 80% of trainees and graduates have attended a public school – known in the UK as a public school – for the full duration of their studies, from ages 11 to 16.

The new targets come as the coronavirus pandemic has upended mindsets and work practices, and disrupted practices and behaviors that would otherwise have been difficult to change, the statement said.

“This is not how we wanted to catalyze radical change, but we are seizing the moment to refocus our efforts to accelerate progress towards a more inclusive culture and greater diversity of talent,” said Helena Morrissey, president of the project, in the Liberation.

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