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Diversity, Equality and Inclusion

ITV's £80m Diversity Commissioning Fund

We recently launched ITV’s Diversity Commissioning Fund, reserving £80m of our content commissioning budget over the next three years to drive change towards racial equity and disability equity in whose stories get told and who gets opportunities in TV production. Of this amount, at least £20m will be reserved for content made by Black, Asian and minority ethnic-led and d/Deaf, disabled and neurodiverse-led production companies. We have also created a new £500k Development Fund to develop ideas that will qualify for the Diversity Commissioning Fund.

Criteria

To qualify for the Diversity Commissioning Fund, productions must meet either the first criteria, or two of the remaining criteria below. If applying to the fund as a co-pro with one of the companies being Black, Asian or minority ethnic-led or d/Deaf, disabled and neurodiverse-led, the production will need to meet two of the criteria.

To qualify for the Development Fund, production companies must meet either the first or second criteria.

1. Diverse company ownership or leadership – senior individuals in company ownership or leadership roles (including through co-production partnerships) involved in shaping creative or operational strategy within the production company (e.g. Managing Director, Creative Director) must be Black, Asian or minority ethnic and/or d/Deaf, disabled or neurodiverse.

2. Diverse creative leadership – at least two individuals in senior creative decision-making roles off-screen involved in shaping and making the programme (e.g. writer, producer, director) must be Black, Asian or minority ethnic and/or d/Deaf, disabled or neurodiverse.

3. Diverse stories and portrayal on-screen – subject matter and/or stories are from a Black, Asian or minority ethnic and/or disabled perspective, and/or starring Black, Asian or minority ethnic or d/Deaf, disabled or neurodiverse actors in lead roles.

4. Diverse salary spend – at least 20% of total salary/fee spend off-screen on the production must be on Black, Asian or minority ethnic and/or d/Deaf, disabled or neurodiverse creatives.

Complementing similar initiatives by the BBC and Channel 4, and developed in consultation with the Sir Lenny Henry Centre for Media Diversity, the Diversity Commissioning Fund is designed to drive lasting change across the sector. With this £80m commitment over three years, we will be significantly increasing our annual spend on diverse content.

Commenting on the announcement, ITV CEO, Carolyn McCall, said: “This announcement builds on ITV’s Diversity Acceleration Plan. We want to keep up the momentum and drive more progress at ITV and across the industry, so that our audiences can see their broad range of experiences and perspectives reflected in our content.”

Ade Rawcliffe, ITV’s Group Director of Diversity and Inclusion, explained the new initiative: “We are committed to creating content by, with, and for everyone, connecting and reflecting modern audiences. We want more people of colour and disabled people to be able to tell their stories and get opportunities in senior production roles. With this reserve fund, we’re working to speed up progress in a sustainable way, and play our part to change the structure of the industry.”

Marcus Ryder at the Sir Lenny Henry Centre for Media Diversity said: “ITV dedicating programme finance for television productions that meet set criteria to positively increase diversity and inclusion is an important development. The LHC is happy to have been consulted in the process, and if implemented fully we see this as a vital policy tool in any broadcaster’s efforts to increase representation of underrepresented groups in production.”

Frequently Asked Questions

How do I access the Diversity Commissioning Fund and Development Fund?

Production companies can get in touch through the relevant Commissioning Team or Editor in the same way that the established commissioning and development process works. The relevant Commissioning Editor will then assess the idea and whether it fits the criteria for the Diversity Commissioning fund or Development fund. There’s more information on our website

Here are the relevant contact details:

Comedy – comedy.commissioning@itv.com

Current Affairs – currentaffairs.commissioning@itv.com or email tom.giles@itv.com

Daytime – daytime.commissioning@itv.com

Drama – drama.commissioning@itv.com

Entertainment – entertainment.commissioning@itv.com

Factual Entertainment – factual.commissioning@itv.com

Sport – For sports events and programming ideas, contact Niall Sloane, Director of Sport, at niall.sloane@itv.com

For more information about the Development fund, please contact Nahrein Kemp (nahrein.kemp@itv.com) or Sam Tatlow MBE (sam.tatlow@itv.com)

We held a webinar explaining the Fund in more detail, you can watch the recording for more information.

What sort of ideas are you looking for?

We want our audiences to see their broad range of experiences and perspectives reflected in our content. We are looking for content made by Black, Asian and minority ethnic-led and d/Deaf, disabled and neurodiverse-led production companies. We are looking for ideas that work for ITV’s stable of channels and/or ITV X. For a steer on what each Commissioning Team are looking for, you can watch a recording of the ITV Producers Forum 2022

Who is the Diversity Commissioning Fund open to?

The fund is open to anyone who meets the criteria. At least £20m is reserved for content made by Black, Asian or minority ethnic-led and d/Deaf, disabled or neurodiverse-led production companies. Other production companies can also access the Diversity Commissioning Fund if they meet two of the other criteria (Diverse creative leadership / Diverse stories and portrayal on-screen / Diverse salary spend). If applying to the fund as a co-pro with one of the companies being Black, Asian or minority ethnic-led or d/Deaf, disabled or neurodiverse-led, the production will need to meet two of the criteria listed above.

Who is the Development Fund open to?

The Development Fund is open to Black, Asian or minority ethnic-led and d/Deaf, disabled or neurodiverse-led production companies. Other production companies can also access the Development Fund if they meet the criteria of Diverse creative leadership – at least two individuals in senior creative decision-making roles off-screen involved in shaping and making the programme (e.g. writer, producer, director) must be Black, Asian or minority ethnic and/or d/Deaf, disabled or neurodiverse.

How do you meet the criteria of a Black, Asian and minority ethnic-led or disabled-led production company?

At least two* senior individuals in company ownership or leadership roles (including through co-production partnerships) involved in shaping creative or operational strategy within the production company must be Black, Asian or minority ethnic and/or d/Deaf, disabled or neurodiverse.

Qualifying roles include:

  • President / Vice President

  • Chief Executive Officer (CEO)

  • Chief Financial Officer (CFO)

  • Chief Operating Officer (COO)

  • Managing Director

  • Creative Director

  • Head of Production

  • Executive Producer

  • Head of Development

If applying to the fund as a co-pro with one of the companies being Black, Asian or minority ethnic-led or d/Deaf, disabled or neurodiverse-led, the production will need to meet two of the criteria (Diverse company ownership or leadership / Diverse creative leadership / Diverse stories and portrayal on-screen / Diverse salary spend).

*For smaller companies there is flexibility and this can be discussed with the relevant Commissioning Editor. For any queries, please contact Sam Tatlow (sam.tatlow@itv.com) and Nahrein Kemp (nahrein.kemp@itv.com).

How do you meet the criteria of Diverse creative leadership?

At least two individuals in senior creative decision-making roles off-screen involved in shaping and making the programme must be Black, Asian or minority ethnic and/or d/Deaf, disabled or neurodiverse. Qualifying roles are listed below.

For scripted programmes the following roles qualify:

  • Executive Producer

  • Production Executive

  • Head of Production

  • Head of Development

  • Director

  • Writer

  • Producer

  • Line Producer

  • Script Editor

  • Editor

For unscripted programmes the following roles qualify:

  • Executive Producer

  • Production Executive

  • Head of Production

  • Head of Development

  • Series Producer

  • Line Producer

  • Director

  • Producer

  • Production Manager

  • Editor

Can individuals pitch ideas for this fund?

Ideas for the Diversity Commissioning Fund and development fund would need to come to the relevant Commissioning Editor via production companies rather than individuals, in the same way that ITV’s established commissioning process works.

How much is the fund?

£80m over the next three years (2022-24). Of this amount, at least £20m will be reserved for content made by Black, Asian or minority ethnic-led and d/Deaf, disabled or neurodiverse-led production companies.

We have also created a new £500k Development Fund to develop ideas that will qualify for the Diversity Commissioning Fund.

Is this extra commissioning money?

The Diversity Commissioning Fund is reserving money from our existing content budget and it is a commitment by ITV to spend its commissioning budget in a different way. The Development Fund is additional money.

Why have you launched this fund?

We want to drive change towards racial equity and disability equity in whose stories get told and who gets opportunities in TV production. We want to play our part in changing the structure of the industry and speed up progress in a sustainable, long-term way.

What happens after 3 years?

We will assess and review the impact of the Fund annually. ITV has a long-term commitment to helping to create racial equity and disability equity in our industry.

For more information about the Diversity Commissioning Fund please contact Nahrein Kemp (nahrein.kemp@itv.com) and Sam Tatlow MBE (sam.tatlow@itv.com)

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