Calendar An icon of a desk calendar. Cancel An icon of a circle with a diagonal line across. Caret An icon of a block arrow pointing to the right. Email An icon of a paper envelope. Facebook An icon of the Facebook "f" mark. Google An icon of the Google "G" mark. Linked In An icon of the Linked In "in" mark. Logout An icon representing logout. Profile An icon that resembles human head and shoulders. Telephone An icon of a traditional telephone receiver. Tick An icon of a tick mark. Is Public An icon of a human eye and eyelashes. Is Not Public An icon of a human eye and eyelashes with a diagonal line through it. Pause Icon A two-lined pause icon for stopping interactions. Quote Mark A opening quote mark. Quote Mark A closing quote mark. Arrow An icon of an arrow. Folder An icon of a paper folder. Breaking An icon of an exclamation mark on a circular background. Camera An icon of a digital camera. Caret An icon of a caret arrow. Clock An icon of a clock face. Close An icon of the an X shape. Close Icon An icon used to represent where to interact to collapse or dismiss a component Comment An icon of a speech bubble. Comments An icon of a speech bubble, denoting user comments. Ellipsis An icon of 3 horizontal dots. Envelope An icon of a paper envelope. Facebook An icon of a facebook f logo. Camera An icon of a digital camera. Home An icon of a house. Instagram An icon of the Instagram logo. LinkedIn An icon of the LinkedIn logo. Magnifying Glass An icon of a magnifying glass. Search Icon A magnifying glass icon that is used to represent the function of searching. Menu An icon of 3 horizontal lines. Hamburger Menu Icon An icon used to represent a collapsed menu. Next An icon of an arrow pointing to the right. Notice An explanation mark centred inside a circle. Previous An icon of an arrow pointing to the left. Rating An icon of a star. Tag An icon of a tag. Twitter An icon of the Twitter logo. Video Camera An icon of a video camera shape. Speech Bubble Icon A icon displaying a speech bubble WhatsApp An icon of the WhatsApp logo. Information An icon of an information logo. Plus A mathematical 'plus' symbol. Duration An icon indicating Time. Success Tick An icon of a green tick. Success Tick Timeout An icon of a greyed out success tick. Loading Spinner An icon of a loading spinner.

Improving diversity at BBC like moving oil tanker, says director-general

BBC director-general Tim Davie (Richard Kendal/RTS/PA)
BBC director-general Tim Davie (Richard Kendal/RTS/PA)

The director-general of the BBC has said his efforts to increase diversity and inclusion at the broadcaster are like moving an “oil tanker” and that “turning cultures” takes years.

Speaking during the Channel 4 Inclusion Festival, Tim Davie highlighted the work the broadcaster was doing to increase the number of diverse employees across its business and on screen.

However, he admitted further efforts were needed.

BBC cost cutting plans
(Aaron Chown/PA)

After discussing ongoing BBC initiatives, Mr Davie said: “The truth of this though. It is a good speech and you have been very kind. But actually turning cultures takes years and this is an oil tanker I am moving here, with a group of people.

“So you are going to find instances where it is not working right. We have got loads of things to do by the way. We are not perfect… There is a lot of work to do.”

The BBC’s director of creative diversity June Sarpong, who Mr Davie was in conversation with, suggested the challenge for the BBC was greater because it was a “successful” company.

Mr Davie replied: “I think that is so true and very profound for many organisations.

“The BBC is a bit unique in this because our revenue, and we are blessed by it, is fixed for a time period.

“So there can be a sense of, ‘I know it is the right thing to so but I don’t really feel the need for change’.

“And I have worked in commercial business in the US where they sensed that if they weren’t connected with the Hispanic community they couldn’t deliver the (viewing) numbers ever.”

Mr Davie also stressed the importance of producing “authentic” programmes.

He said: “What is interesting to me is we often as institutions get a hard time about, ‘Are you, if I may, woke; are you progressive?’

“This is really important that we talk about it as leaders and teams.

“When you do authentic work – I May Destroy You, Small Axe – you never get a question because it is work of such stature, such integrity, it doesn’t feel like something you are dong for the sake of it.

“You are making great work.

“And it is the same with a drama that understands the working class background.

“Some of the great literature, some of the great programmes we see, they come from authenticity and I think that is what a diverse and inclusive environment can really bring.”

Already a subscriber? Sign in