ABC Friends News


An international challenge to achieve equal representation for women and men commentators and interviewees in news programmes has been exceeded by our ABC.

The BBC’s international 50:50 challenge took place across the month of March and involved more than 40 international broadcasters.

“A thunderous congratulations to the ABC and every single employee who has worked hard to shift that dinosaur gender dial! This push towards a fairer, truer representation of women does not happen by osmosis or trickle-down. Nor does it just happen with time. It takes concerted effort! Design. And willful determination.”
–  Virginia Haussegger, founding Director of the 50/50 by 2030 Foundation

Only about half of the broadcasters were able to achieve the target.

The ABC’s overall March result was 51% female voices.

“It’s been brilliant to see the ABC embrace the 50:50 project. For years, the economic experts rolled out on TV and radio and in print were almost exclusively older men. This was a bit stale and created issues with the perception of economics – many younger women just couldn’t see themselves in the profession.”
–  Danielle Wood, President, Economic Society of Australia and co-founder of the Women in Economics Network 

This video, from the European Journalism Centre, details the BBC’s 50:50 Equality Project:

ABC Managing Director David Anderson said the ABC has a special obligation to lead the way on gender equality in the Australian media and ensure its news coverage fairly represents our society. 

Mr. Anderson said:

“Including a full range of voices and perspectives simply makes our content better… However, the challenge is far from over. We have more work to do to consolidate this achievement and continue to improve our performance in areas and topics which remain overly male dominated in our coverage… We’re also broadening our focus to include other under-represented groups: Indigenous Australians, people from culturally and linguistically diverse communities and people with a disability.”