Diversity in Publishing Initiatives

Penguin Random House published their latest annual report on their workplace demographics, tracking their efforts to improve diversity. The majority of employees in both office and warehouse jobs are still white (74% and 75%), but 52% of new hires in 2021 are BIPOC (Black, Indigenous, and People of Color). That’s an increase from 43% the year before. 17% of new hires were of Asian descent (up from 9.9%), 14% were Hispanic (up from 11.3%), and 15.9% were Black (up from 13.9). Biracial and multiracial new employees declined from 7.9% to 4.8%. There was less turnover than usual in 2021, and some of the recent employees were hired for entirely new positions. The editorial and publicity departments are less diverse than the rest of PRH, with 29% BIPOC employees in the former and 25% in the latter.

The report stresses that the progress there needs to continue, as ‘‘these are roles that directly shape and support our lists and are crucially important as we work to publish and promote more BIPOC creators.’’ Women still dominated, making up 73% of the workforce, with men filling 26% of roles. Non-binary and gender nonconforming employees made up half a percent; this is the first year those gender identities were offered as options. The report concludes that, ‘‘While we still have significant work to do in this area, we are encouraged by the modest progress our data show.’’ For more, see their report.

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