Driving D&I in a global context

A strategy will look different across regions and countries and consideration is required in order to engage local managers in change. Evaluate which groups are non-dominant and what barriers are holding back their representation and advancement.

Employer Recommendations

Translate and consider nuance and local context
Recognise that certain terms and concepts might not have an equivalent term and would therefore need additional context. Certain phrases and words might also have local meanings and nuances that might impact how the intended message is received.
Aim to identify local examples.
While concepts discussed and guidelines put forward might be kept standard, local case studies, examples and details should be included to better illustrate the ideas communicated.
Reframe concepts.
Not all values and concepts are universally accepted. For example, because of differences in historical context and experiences of activism, the Black Lives Matter conversation lands differently across different markets. Concepts of race, racism, and privilege are understood and play out differently depending on which country you are operating in and whom you speak with.  In the implementation of any ‘localised’ strategy, local laws, regulations and norms need to be considered and the systems and processes put in place need to suit the way things get done locally.
According to Ruchika Tulshyan, “Inclusion” can mean different things in different parts of the world. In individualistic societies in the western world, the concept of “inclusion” encourages us to magnify and celebrate the differences we bring to the organization. In more collectivist societies, like countries in Asia, standing out for being different may not be a positive thing. I have found that the term “belonging” often resonates more deeply in non-western cultures', read more in 'How to Take a Global Approach to Diversity, Equity and Inclusion'.

Royal Academy for Engineering's Tips for embedding diversity and inclusion across global organisations. 

  • Consider how the legislation differs in different locations and the impact of this.
  • Agree both business and diversity and inclusion priorities at a local level.
  • Plan to communicate diversity and inclusion across the organisation, including the overall strategy, local strategy and action plan, successes, progress, and areas of future focus. 
  • Ensure a plan is in place to support different locations.
  • Consider how to celebrate the success of areas that might be at very different stages of their D&I journey.
  • Create an overall vision for the whole organisation.
  • Ask different regions/locations to take responsibility for determining and implementing action plans at a local level, to ensure that priorities and initiatives are tailored to the needs of individual areas.
  • Identify a senior leader in each region/location who is responsible for championing D&I actions and reporting back to others.
  • Hold regular meetings for the D&I leaders of each region/location to share experiences, challenges, progress, advice and tips. The requirement to report back on actions also increases the likelihood that people will take action.

Collecting data in EU

This blog sets out clear, practical guidelines for employers on how to collect DEI data from their EU workforces. In light of the European Commission’s Anti-Racism Action Plan and the upcoming mandatory ESG disclosure requirements under the EU Corporate Sustainability Reporting Directive (CSRD), the blog recommends that companies begin to collect DEI data in Europe now.

The path forward revolves around building trust with the workforce (and with relevant work councils and trade unions) about the collection and use of DEI data. If trust is not already a given, the recommendation is to start small (in less sensitive jurisdictions), engage with work councils or the workforce at large, and in light of the upcoming CRSD, start now'.

'From 2024 onwards, large companies in the EU will be subject to mandatory disclosure requirements for compliance with environmental, social, and governance (ESG) standards under the upcoming EU Corporate Sustainability Reporting Directive (CSRD). The CSRD requires companies to report on actual or potential adverse impacts on their workforce with regard to equal treatment and opportunities, which are difficult to measure without collecting and monitoring DEI data', Why Monitoring Cultural Diversity in Your European Workforce Is Not at Odds with the GDPR, Future of Privacy Forum

➖Included at the end of this blog are country reports with a summary of the legal basis available for processing DEI data under the laws of France, Germany, Italy, Spain and The Netherlands.

Further information