ABC, Seven, Nine, 10 and SBS to meet this week for diversity roundtable

Executives and CEOs from all free-to-air networks and several major media organisations will meet this Friday for a historic roundtable discussion aimed at improving diversity across the media landscape.

Hosted by Media Diversity Australia at SBS’s Sydney headquarters, all 11 MDA members, plus Minister for Communications Michelle Rowland, will convene for “an authentic and frank conversation about the issues and ways to tackle the challenges.”

SBS’s Artarmon office

The roundtable will include representative from all five free-to-air networks: Nine’s CEO Mike Sneesby; Seven’s chief people and culture officer Lucinda Gemmell; Ten’s executive vice president, chief content officer, and local head of Paramount, Beverley McGarvey; ABC’s chief content officer, Chris Oliver-Taylor; and SBS’s managing director James Taylor.

They will be joined by News Corp Australia’s CFO Michael Murphy; Guardian Australia editor Lenore Taylor; AAP’s editor Andrew Drummond; Private Media Group’s CEO Will Hayward; The Conversation’s CEO Lisa Watts; and The Daily Aus co-founders Zara Seidler and Sam Koslowski.

Mariam Veiszadeh, CEO of Media Diversity Australia said of the roundtable: “For the first time, these leaders are coming together for an authentic and frank conversation about the issues and ways to tackle the challenges.

“As individual media organisations and MDA members, each member has the power to have a meaningful impact, but as a collective making a shared commitment to have honest and important discussions and take action, we have the potential to move on from discussions and truly shift the dial on diversity, inclusion and equity in Australian media.

“But it is critical that this is more than a discussion – all MDA members recognise the need for and value of greater diversity, but the pace of industry-wide change is slow and inconsistent.

“We are coming together to make the strongest commitment yet as an industry. This is a collective call to action for Australia’s media industry and I look forward to sharing the commitments made as we begin this next stage of the journey.”


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