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Design: not all white men

According to research done by the Department for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport (DCMS), the design industry is 90% white and around 60% male (2017).

When you’ve worked in the design industry for decades, you get to see lots of changes in the working environment. However, in terms of the design training enquiries we receive here at Boost, we have noticed 2 trends.

  1. Most enquiries about our Adobe software training are for marketers;
  2. Most of those marketers are women;
  3. Around 5% or fewer training courses we have led have been attended by those from a non-white background.

So, our findings concur that design is still mostly ‘white’, but not that it comprises mostly men.

However, I would draw your attention to some finer points:

  • Was the poll exclusive to stereotypical “design sector” arenas, such as design and advertising agencies?
  • Did it include publishing (arguably more densely populated by female designers)?
  • Was any weight given to in-house designers (e.g. those working in a design-based role, within a non-design company, such as an insurance firm)?
  • Are there more women being moved into the role of designer (sometimes reluctantly) than men, because they predominate marketing already?

Food for thought…

Source: Design Week, By Sarah Dawood July 31, 2017

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