Culture House Daily

Ethnic diversity higher in the City than the arts

26 February 2014

10:11 AM

26 February 2014

10:11 AM

That’s right. The evil scumbags who work in the City appear to be doing a better job at being modern and liberal than the state-subsidised art world. According to last year’s Creative Skillset Employment Census, 5.4 per cent of those working in the arts were from the black or ethnic minorities. In the City, by contrast, figures from 2012 show that 30.5 per cent of employees were from the black or ethnic minorities.

So the decades of smug hand-wringing, the diversity drives and ethnicity awareness classes, the form-filling and box-ticking, has produced an arts workforce that Enoch Powell would have been proud of: 94.6 per cent white. Whereas in the neoliberal cesspit that is Canary Wharf – where the only form anyone has to fill is whether they want their bonus in coke or midgets – they’ve created a haven of multiculturalism.

For the arts establishment, this must be a bit like waking up and discovering that Nigel Farage will receive next year’s Turner Prize for voidal parallelism in post-internet art. For me, it all finally makes sense. All that anti-capitalist rage from artists. All that envy. The years and years of telling everyone else how racist they are. It’s just a classic case of the lady (statistically probably white) protesting too much. If any of the CEOs of the major arts organisations ever want to move on, I know a man who loves heading up messed up white organisations:

Photo: Thanassis Stavrakis/AP/Press Association Images

Photo: Thanassis Stavrakis/AP/Press Association Images

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  • Sparky

    Jesus christ.

    This is not news. Not to the arts world, not to anyone. We are very aware that our record for ethnic diversity is terrible. This is the most pointlessly snide article I’ve read for a while. Get over yourself, this is old news.

  • Daniel Maris

    Just in case anyone is any doubt this City survey is not credible – just take this :

    “The survey was distributed to a total 45,587 current and former candidates
    and clients working in The City of London and Canary Wharf.”

    So there appears to have been no attempt to match the sample to the actual distribution in the City. There is indeed no proper definition of what the “City” is in terms of this survey.

    • Major_Eyeswater

      You make a fair point, the survey is not statistically unassailable for the reasons you give. However it’s conclusions chime with the recruitment practices of ALL the major banks, financial services and law firms over the last 15 years or so and stand as a very broad-based anecdote validating those efforts.

      For example, look at (yes I declare an interest here). This year they will place 650 BME graduates and interns in firms in the sectors mentioned. This organisation is wholly funded by these firms to deliver a diverse work force for a global client base. The numbers in the report reflect a concerted effort by the city to deliver a diverse workforce. Call it enlightened self interest if you like. A better result all round than clunky, PC, statist “legislation & subsidy” methods no?

  • Two Bob

    London is number one on the crap towns list. London is completely detached from the rest of the UK.

  • ablanche

    So true. I look forward to you being given an open mike on the bbc. Perhaps the reason this wont happen is not the shocking story you so intelligently tell about the discrimination that they otherwise see as a charter imperative to decry – but the fact that your name sounds like the aiming mechanism of an austrian dreadnought and they could never pronounce it on air without facing a racism claim. More!

  • andagain

    the City appear to be doing a better job at being modern and liberal than the state-subsidised art world.

    That’s not a surprise. The state subsidies will naturally go to the people with contacts. And the City operates in a very international industry.

  • Mark Taylor

    The Creative Skillset Employment Census doesn’t cover ‘the arts’ – it covers ‘the creative media industries’ – that is, ‘television, radio, animation, facilities, interactive media, computer games, VFX, corporate production and film’.

  • Crying out loud

    “30.5 per cent of employees were from the black or ethnic minorities”.
    So BME are massively over represented and White people under represented when looking at the 2011 census results? But no, the article focuses on the ‘Arts’ where 94% of workers may be White…so what? Given the adult BME population that sounds bang on.

  • rtj1211

    I don’t think there’s ever been an indication that avarice, greed and snake-oil salesmen have miraculously been limited to the white Siegfrieds you know.

    You can’t hide your swindles behind the cloak of ethnic diversity.

    If you’re swindlers, you’re swindlers be you white, black, olive, yellow, gay, bi or aroused by ovine scents.

  • Novus

    An amusing and pertinent observation let down by a crass and thoroughly ignorant reference to Enoch Powell to which the even most ardent boilerplate sixth-form lefty would have been ashamed to stoop.

  • Daniel Maris

    Where are the figures from Creative Skillset Employment Census. You don’t give a link.

  • Major_Eyeswater

    An excellent article.

    About 15-20 years ago the main city investment banks decided they needed a diverse workforce to service a global client base. They realised that too many decent potential recruits from these groups were self-selecting out of applying for graduate roles at their firms.

    Instead of instituting a race- or gender quota-based recruitment drive (potentially illegal) they got together and gave financial backing to both for-profit and not-for-profit organisations (for example ) to help them encourage applications from minorities and women.

    As the author makes clear, this approach worked. High quality applications from women and minorities increased. If you are reading this and have the same business need for a diverse workforce but are not prepared to compromise the quality of your recruitment intake please consider this as a better way to achieve your aims than some of the top-down PC options being touted elsewhere in Europe.

  • Jez

    Surely your argument can’t be that weak, that my comments go to ‘auto moderation’?

    Man up baby!

  • GUBU


    Mr Griffin would certainly appear to be very creative – judging by his financial history.

  • Shoe On Head

    is igor trying to shoehorn art and multi-party systems?

    feels forced.

    hot air

  • global city

    As has been said all along, especially by UKIP, there is the world of difference between the dynamic melting pot and the enforced political dogma of ‘Multiculturalism’ and/or mass/uncontrolled immigration.

    Ironically, we are seeing the consequences of political multiculturalism being played out in Eastern Europe…..sixty, seventy years after it was commenced.

    As for the disparity between thee two sectors, it has also long been pointed out that the vast majority of white middle class promoters of multiculturalism and ‘diversity’ themselves avoid it like the plague, living in white enclaves and white workplaces.

    Lefties have always been hypocrites, their ideas are not meant to achieve what is written on the tin. The memes are certainly not meant to impinge on their comfortable world.

    • Kitty MLB

      ‘ Multiculturalism’ that wretched word is a Leftie plague upon the UK
      and just has not worked, people stuffed together to build their own little
      communities, some parts of London are like a Islamic country within England.

    • Kitty MLB

      Apologies, the post was sent too early.
      and also these communities obviously would not be interested in the Arts,
      and not just the Islamic communities, ethnic minorities also.
      Some just prefer to live in their own little world.

  • Hexhamgeezer

    Don’t do as we (the Left) do; Do as we say.

    And what a good idea to have Mr Griffin in charge. His sponsor could be Harriet Harman

  • BarkingAtTreehuggers

    Ah, bless. Bonus season coming up?

    • Major_Eyeswater

      Do the facts not match your prejudices on this point? Ah, bless.

      • BarkingAtTreehuggers

        I am unopposed to cultural multi-cult of any sort. Not to worry… is there a bonus season coming up?

        • Daniel Maris

          Yep, probably one of those things that got mentioned at one of those very long lunches they have… 😉

          • Major_Eyeswater

            Long lunches? They went out decades ago. Do keep up.