- Responsible journalism is fundamental to sustaining democracy, holding the powerful to account and ensuring citizens can make informed decisions;
- News media help define issues, influence opinions and shape public policy;
- Sources that are quoted and featured by media have greater influence than those whose voices are not amplified;
- Research makes clear that including women’s perspectives better represents the realities of all citizens’ lived experiences, improves decision-making, and increases the effectiveness and accountability of public policy;
- Qualified women with diverse backgrounds exist in virtually every field;
- Informed Opinions’ and FemmesExpertes’ online databases make it easy for journalists to find expert women willing and able to comment;
- Leading journalists and news organizations that already actively track the gender ratio and diversity of their sources have experienced stronger audience engagement as a result
- What gets measured gets managed*; monitoring the contributions made by women and other underrepresented groups reminds journalists of the value of effectively reflecting the full diversity of perspectives among the citizens they serve
I pledge to track the gender ratio of my sources to hold myself accountable and better represent a diversity of perspectives in my journalism.
* The Atlantic’s Ed Yong calls his own tracking spreadsheet “a vaccine against self-delusion.” Since Yong began tracking his sources, he’s been able to achieve a 50-50 gender balance. He estimates that the achievement required an investment of approximately one additional hour of work per week.