Matt Hancock: Creative industries must address ‘moral imperative’ of diversity

Culture secretary Matt Hancock
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Culture secretary Matt Hancock has issued a rallying cry to improve diversity across the creative industries at a government-led forum event billed as the first of its kind.

Hancock described diversity within arts and culture both as “a moral imperative” and as making “good business sense”, when he addressed more than 100 organisations from sectors including culture, digital and sport at a diversity forum in London.

It is the first time the Department for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport has held a cross-industry event on diversity. The forum was intended to bring organisations together and encourage them to share best practice for increasing diversity and social mobility.

Hancock said: “It’s crucial that these good intentions are converted into good decisions.

“Talent in music, sport, tech, art and design can be found anywhere but unless we look for it everywhere, we all risk losing out. We need to open up opportunities to everyone in this country – because you’ll never serve the nation unless you reflect the nation.”

The event also included speeches by Creative Diversity Network chief executive Deborah Williams, who oversees the broadcasting diversity monitoring programme Project Diamond.

The event coincided with the publication of the government’s creative sector deal, part of its industrial strategy, which is intended to boost the creative industries and is worth £150 million.