Diversity – or lack thereof – is all over the news these days. And the picture does not look good.
Diversity in corporate America: A new study says companies that have women executives are more profitable – and yet few companies do. Less than 5 percent of 21,980 firms surveyed had a female CEO. Also, the consulting firm Accenture is making waves by releasing internal data on company demographics (half of its employees are white, 64 percent are men) and announcing a plan to pay bonuses for helping recruit minorities.
Diversity in government: A new report criticizes the Federal Reserve for being too white and too male. It says 83 percent of the Fed’s board members are white. Current Chairwoman Janet Yellen is its first female leader.
Diversity in politics: The campaigns of Democratic presidential candidates Bernie Sanders and Hillary Clinton have been sparring over female supporters, as controversial comments by Madeleine Albright and Gloria Steinem about female Sanders supporters made headlines. Now the race is “about to get racial,” as the candidates compete for nonwhite voters in primary states with a lot of them. That’s seen as Clinton’s strong suit, though Sanders just got a couple of endorsements from prominent black intellectuals.
Diversity in Hollywood: The #OscarsSoWhite controversy rages on, with a very white photo op and an offer to boycott the Academy Awards by nominee Sylvester Stallone. A new study found an increase in female characters in 2015 movies, to 22 percent (think “Star Wars,” “Mad Max” and “The Hunger Games”) but no bump up for women of color. Meanwhile, Samantha Bee takes on diversity in late-night TV, which is usually very white and very male.
Diversity in the media: The new breed of digital news organizations seem vexed by the same problem that dogs their legacy forebears: They’re mostly white, according to a story in the International Business Times, which is itself 75 percent white. But Fusion, apparently, is an exception.