Inclusion is a hot topic. Organizations want to avoid excluding people in their communications. This is where creative professionals, such as communications professionals, advertisers and designers, have work to do. The research group Inclusion and the Creative Industries of the Creative Business Research Center is about the special responsibility of the creative sector in this. Do creative professionals portray people as sufficiently diverse? Do they unconsciously exclude groups? From the creative industry's research and experience with imaging and creating symbolic value, creative professionals and researchers are ideally equipped to assist and advise other professionals on inclusion and diversity.
From the perspective of the creative sector, the enormous challenge of a more inclusive society becomes a practical task. As practice researchers, we look at how creative and other professionals who communicate with citizens can be reflective in their work. Do they understand, for example, that "inclusive communication" begins with reflection on how one's own institution comes across and is known to others? And that "media savvy" is not yet "media savvy"? We like to work in research in a participatory and co-creative way with all stakeholders. Whether we help to realize new products or forms of communication from research, or conduct research and provide advice to accompany ongoing projects. Check out the Compass for inclusive communication.
As practice researchers, we ourselves pursue sensitivity and self-reflection. Research then is not the authoritative analysis and description of situations and processes of inclusion and exclusion by professionals. We stand for connecting, listening, inspiring and investigative experimentation. How we can deal with this differently and thus, together with as many stakeholders as possible, find out what that yields. The SLUISlab is our testing ground.
Within the research group Inclusion and the Creative Industries, we address current issues of inclusion together with partners from the field. There is a strong link between research and education. For example, students carry out projects in living labs. They immerse themselves in a concrete issue and demonstrate their added value as an aspiring creative professional by developing and elaborating design and research concepts together with stakeholders. Thus they learn to think from the perspective and experience of others: an excellent preparation for how they will do their work later. Teachers are closely involved as supervisors and as researchers. They take their experiences into the curriculum. The research group publishes widely so that results flow directly back into education and the field.
With the GGD in Kennemerland we investigate how to communicate inclusively with status holders about health. In cooperation with the research group Diversiteitsvraagstukken, we are looking together with experts by experience what you can do against internship discrimination. With Movisie and Diversity Media and young influencers, we are taking a stand against online forms of conduct that exclude. These are just a few projects that have everything to do with inclusion. As a government, social organization, research institution or company: you are also welcome to contribute your issue on inclusion or (digital) media literacy. We are happy to link a concrete research question to it and start a process of participation and co-creation with all stakeholders, aimed at concrete, creative concepts.
Interested in a collaboration? Send an email to Joke Hermes.
From the research group Inclusion and the Creative Industries, we conduct research on how professionals in the creative industries can contribute to inclusion. We focus on society as a whole, the role of organizations and companies, and the role of individual professionals.
The media we use all offer us food for thought. Whether it is entertainment, news or a documentary, they prompt us to think about the world. In exchanging about it, connections are formed: cultural citizenship. This research topic deals with the role and importance of identity and representation.
Inclusive communication seems an obvious and good thing. But how does it relate to target-group thinking? And isn't diversification in some cases better than generalization? Indeed, doesn't exclusion already begin the moment professionals are too unaware of their own status and perception of their organization? In our research, we use insights and resources from the creative sector to research and advise precisely outside of it.
For an inclusive society, we need professionals with 21st-century skills. The most important of these is to understand that the relationship between professionals and citizens has totally changed in a short period of time. Whereas creative professionals were authoritative media makers, now they must distinguish themselves by connecting, listening and inspiring. Becoming media savvy (in addition to being "media savvy") is an important first step in this!
Diversity Media and Ponder - Research and Consulting