Creative industries toolkit

For employers

Creative industries

Appendix A

Additional creative industries-wide guidance

General information

Creative Industries Policy and Evidence Centre, led by nesta
PEC provides independent research and policy recommendations for the UK’s creative industries and it’s core research programme includes a focus on diversity and inclusion; skills, jobs and education; R&D and innovation; access to finance and the value of Arts and Culture.

The All-Party Parliamentary Group (APPG) for Creative Diversity
The APPG for Creative Diversity is a cross-party group in Parliament co-chaired by Baroness Deborah Bull and Chi Onwurah MP which exists to identify and tackle obstacles to diversity and inclusion in the creative sector.  In September 2021 they published the Creative Majority report into ‘What Works’ to support diversity in cultural and creative industries. The report contains practical guidance, based on extensive industry roundtables and a review of the academic literature, for organisations and policy makers to make cultural and creative industries open to all. The report can be downloaded here: 

Sutton Trust. Social mobility in the workplace: An employer’s guide: It covers a wide range of issues, including contextual recruitment and best practice advice on routes into the workplace for young people, including internships and apprenticeships and provides a companion to existing advice for businesses, including this SMC Employers’ Toolkit.


Home Truths: Undoing racism and delivering real diversity in the charity sector

All Party Parliamentary Group – the APPG for Creative Diversity and Creative and PEC
Diversity in the Creative Industries during Covid-19 (December 2020)

Arts Council England
Equality, Diversity and the Creative Case: A Data Report, 2018-19.

Measuring Social Mobility in the Creative and Cultural Industries
Susan Oman: Improving data practices to monitor inequality and introduce social mobility measures:

Royal Historical Society
Race Ethnicity and Equality Report (2018)

Royal Society for the encouragement of Arts (RSA), Manufactures and Commerce report
Heritage for inclusive growth  (next steps: pp58)

Strategic models and policies
Historic England’s 2020-2023 Strategy for Inclusion, Diversity and Equality
Group for education in museums GEM:Creating and Implementing Equality, Diversity and Inclusion Policies

Culture and leadership

Arts Council England (ACE) Toolkit
This resource will help you follow best practice in recruitment and develop a diverse workforce and leadership.
Culture Change toolkit

Charity Governance Code
This Code is a practical tool to help charities and their trustees develop high standards of governance.

Incorporated Society of Musicians and Musicians Union
A set of principles that aims to eradicate bullying, harassment, discrimination and other forms of inappropriate behaviour within the music sector’
ISM-MU Code of Practice

Jerwood Arts, Weston Jerwood Creative Bursaries
Socio-Economic Diversity & Inclusion in Arts: A Toolkit for Employers, 2019.

Shape Arts
A disability-led arts organisation which works to improve access to culture for disabled people by providing opportunities for disabled artists, training cultural institutions to be more open to disabled people, and through running participatory arts and development programmes.

Rebuilding Heritage Project
Tools for Workplace Inclusion


Interested in engaging teachers and parents about why pursuing a career in the creative industries is worthwhile, meaningful, and rewarding? Check out these type of programmes, for example:
V&A Dundee’s Schools Programme
The Hepworth Wakefield’s School Prints Scheme
Turner Contemporary’s Creative Enablers Project with parents

For outreach to support access to the industry, check out:
Access:VFX –
Creative Mentor Network
Speakers for Schools –


Recruitment support for reaching diverse talent.

Arts Jobs:

Creative Access – register to be an employment partner on

Creative & Cultural Skills (CC Skills) – Best practice recruitment guide for creative leaders:

The Creative Mentor Network: finds talent through their network:

Inclusive Media – register on their talent directory:

Lecture in Progress – post opportunities on:

The Publishing Post – aims to be a voice for people trying to break into the industry:

Podium – online marketplace that connects skilled people with a disability or impairment directly with ambitious employers on a freelance basis and vice versa.

Advice on apprenticeships in the creative industries.
Check out Creative & Cultural Skills. Creative & Cultural Skills have been involved in apprenticeships since 2008, when they first supported development of the creative apprenticeship frameworks for the industry. Also their ‘A manager’s guide to apprenticeships’.

More useful links:

Creative Careers Programme (CCP) is an initiative by the UK creative industries to make it easier for young people to break into the sector.

CCSkills deliver training sessions designed to educate and empower cultural sector employers to adopt inclusive recruitment practices, including working with freelancers:

National Lottery Heritage Fund – how to develop skills and training capacity in your hires:


Creative Industries Policy & Evidence Centre (PEC)
Getting in and getting on – their research on who dominates key creative roles in the sector:, August 2020

The Sutton Trust
Their research on the role of unpaid internships as a barrier to career progression –, January 2018


Creative Diversity Network
CDN exists to enable the UK Broadcasting industry to increase diversity and inspire inclusion.

Cultural Inclusion
Promotes laws and policies that ensure cultural participation, access, and the right to express and interpret culture.

Creative Industries Council
View the minutes from meetings of the Creative Industries Council. The Creative Industries Council is a joint forum between leaders in the creative industries and government.

Inclusive Media
Best practice guidance to consider at each stage of the creative process:

A youth leadership and social change organisation supporting and amplifying the voices of working class young people

Scottish Index of Multiple Deprivation 2020
A tool for identifying areas with relatively high levels of deprivation in Scotland:

UK Disability Arts Alliance
#WeShallNotBeRemoved – a forum to advocate, campaign and support D/deaf, neurodivergent and disabled creative practitioners and organisations through and after Covid19:

Weston Jerwood Creative Bursaries
A collection of stories from host organisations, participants and alumni of Weston Jerwood Creative Bursaries programme

Appendix B

Sub-sector specific resources

Advertising and marketing

Following the industry’s first All in Census survey, created by the Advertising Association, IPA, ISBA and Kantar, the industry published an All-in Report, setting out areas of focus for the industry to achieve greater inclusivity and a roadmap for action. Visit the All in Hub for more details.

Hiring – Become a member of D&AD New Blood Awards

Creative Pioneers is an apprenticeship scheme led by four of UK media’s leading influencers, the IPA, the Creative Industries Council, Ravensbourne University London and Metro.

The Association of Photographers provides information, advice and guidance for those wishing to work in the professional photography industry such as advertising, commercial art and marketing.

A trustee recruitment programme for charities who wish to take action to diversify their board

Getting on Board
Inclusive Boards Trustee Recruitment |
Women on Boards
NCVO guidance: Trustee Diversity –

For broadcasters – collect and report diversity data via Diamond, the Creative Diversity Network’s single online system.


Film, TV and Theatre

Check out the following tools to help connect with diverse talent:

ScreenSkills Trainee Finder
Production Guild
UK Theatre Casting Toolkit


Gaming Industry

Video Games Ambassadors, in partnership with ukie, connects educators with games industry employees to provide outreach with mentorship, game jams and masterclass opportunities across the UK.

#RaiseTheGame is a collaborative and high-impact pledge to improve diversity and inclusion in the games industry. The pledge has three key pillars: Creating a Diverse Workforce; Shaping Welcoming and Inclusive Places to Work; Reflecting Greater Diversity in their Work. Open for developers, publishers and academic institutions, organisations can make their pledge here:



Cross-industry code of conduct for bookselling and publishing.

Society of Authors – Run a peer support network for authors living and working with health challenges

The Spare Room/Zoom – connects those working in publishing with a potential entrant or very new starter:

The Book Trade Charity – offers financial help to applicants (particularly those under the age of 30) looking for jobs in the book trade, including help with interview costs, affordable housing and accommodation.


Museums, galleries, libraries and heritage

Chartered Institute for Archaeologists CIfA – a short 10 step guide to help organisations to diversify their workplace.
10 steps to diversify your workplace

Council for British Archaeology – Diversifying participation in the historic environment workforce

Group for Education in Museums (GEM) – Creating and implementing equality, diversity and inclusion policies:

Historic England – Historic England welcomes proposals exploring workforce diversity in its Research Agenda (see pp. 22-24)
Museum as Muck
An award-winning network of working-class museum people working to affect change in the socio-economic diversity of the sector

Museum Association – explore their campaigns to build inclusive and diverse museums that prioritise fair working conditions and workforce wellbeing, exploring topics such as bullying, pay and inclusion.

Museum Detox – A network for people of colour who work in museums, galleries, libraries, archives, and the heritage sector.


Music, performing and visual arts

a-n The Artists Information Company – a-n is the largest artists’ membership organisation in the UK, supporting artists and act on behalf of their membership and the visual arts sector to improve artists’ livelihoods, to inform cultural policy and to affirm the value of artists in society.
Resources for artists and arts organisations:

Anti-racism touring rider – a guidelines document to make touring a safer, more equitable environment.

Keychange movement – aims to empower talented underrepresented genders in the music sector with training, mentoring, and network support plus conferences and showcasing opportunities at partner festivals –

The Incorporated Society of Musicians (ISM) – 2018 report Dignity at work, which collates the results of a survey into discrimination and harassment in the music sector.
Their webinar Diversify your music lessons
Their webinars on Diversity and inclusion webinars
Their webinar Inclusive and accessible music-making with adaptive music instruments

The Independent Theatre Council

UK Theatre – Theatre Casting Toolkit:

Appendix C

Key terms

Socio-economic background
Socio-economic background refers to the particular set of social and economic circumstances that an individual has come from. It permits objective discussion of the influence of these circumstances on individuals’ educational and career trajectories. It can be objectively measured by capturing information on parental occupation and level of education.

Social mobility
Social mobility is the link between an individual’s income and occupation and the income and occupation of their parents. It is about where people end up in comparison to their parents or relative to their peers. It is widely adopted as a way of describing the importance of creating opportunities for individuals from lower socio-economic backgrounds to enable them to become more economically successful.

Social class
Class can be a loaded term. Class encompasses a range of socio-cultural and geographical factors. Objective measures of assessing family income may not necessarily match up with individuals’ perceptions of their social class status, and individuals may feel less comfortable talking about social class. However, class can invoke a range of tacit assumptions and practices, from how to dress and talk, to food choices and hobbies, and using it can expose the negative ways that these assumptions affect attitudes and behaviours. In this toolkit, we use the National Statistics Socio-economic Classification groupings.

Those from ‘professional’ backgrounds are from managerial and professional backgrounds. Examples include CEOs, senior police officers, doctors, journalists, barristers, solicitors, teachers and nurses. Those from ‘working class’ backgrounds are from routine and manual occupations. Examples include receptionists, electricians, plumbers, butchers and van drivers.

This term captures the importance of recognising and valuing difference among individuals, e.g. along the lines of gender, ethnicity, socio-economic background, sexual orientation, age or disability. It generally refers to increasing the representation of groups that are under-represented in organisations. It must, however, be understood alongside ‘inclusion’. Diversity in and of itself does not result in an inclusive environment.

Individuals do not experience their diversity characteristics in isolation: these characteristics overlap and collide to compound the experience of inequality. For example, patterns of progression in the firm will vary not only by gender, ethnicity or socio-economic background, but by combinations of all three. Policy and practice need to recognise the convergence of factors and respond accordingly.

This is the meaningful achievement of diversity. This involves creating the conditions to ensure individuals from diverse backgrounds are valued and treated equitably, feel empowered and are able to progress.

These can be defined as everyday words or acts that send denigrating messages to certain groups who are perceived (or perceive themselves) as ‘different’ (e.g. in terms of gender, ethnicity or socio-economic background). They are subtle demeaning comments or statements, which, over time, make individuals feel inferior or excluded. Members of the dominant culture are often unaware that certain comments or behaviours may be causing harm as there is no intention to offend. Relatively insignificant issues can build up to become extremely problematic as constant small comments gradually erode employees’ confidence, self-belief and sense of belonging.

Want to dive deeper?
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