March 20, 2019

ACP releases study on diversity in the Canadian publishing industry

The Association of Canadian Publishers (ACP) has released the results of its 2018 baseline survey measuring diversity in the English-language Canadian book publishing industry. The first survey of its kind conducted of the Canadian industry, the results were presented at BookNet Canada’s Tech Forum this afternoon, and the summary report is now available on ACP’s website.

The survey was conducted over the summer of 2018 by ACP’s Diversity and Inclusion Working Group. The group was established at ACP’s 2017 Annual General Meeting, with a mandate to respond to the underrepresentation of Indigenous and racialized people in the Canadian publishing workforce. Three hundred and seventy-two publishing professionals responded to the online survey.

The survey’s findings confirm the premise on which the working group was founded—Indigenous and racialized people are underrepresented in the industry: 82% of respondents identified as white. The survey also gathered data in other demographic areas, including age, gender identity, sexual orientation, and disability.

In addition to gathering data on industry demographics, the survey invited respondents to identify existing or new initiatives that could help encourage a diverse and inclusive industry. These include:

  • Development of policies on diversity, anti-discrimination, anti-harassment, human rights, and accessibility;
  • Adoption of new recruitment strategies and hiring practices;
  • Mentorship and professional development opportunities;
  • Outreach to and partnership with organizations representing diverse communities and educational

The survey results will inform the next steps of the ACP Diversity and Inclusion Working Group, which will make recommendations to the association for future activity in support of the group’s primary goal of increasing the participation of Indigenous and racialized people in the industry.