Help The Agenda find Women Experts

"The Agenda" with Steve Paikin is a current affairs show on Canadian educational public educational media TVO. It brings guests to participate in roundtable discussions on a wide range of local, national and international topical issues.

In a blog entry titled "Where, Oh Where, Are All The Female Guests?" dated 16 March 2014, host Steve Paikin launched a passionate plea for suggestions on how to find female guests willing to speak on the show.

" We ask a variation of the same question every night when we book guests for The Agenda. Why, oh why, do we have such a tough time getting female guests on our program?

I want to be really clear about something. I think I speak for everyone at The Agenda when I say we have two simultaneous top priorities:

1. get the best guest for the topic that we possibly can (the most thoughtful, most engaging, most authoritative, most articulate, etc.)

2. given that the population we serve is half female, make sure half our guests are female too.

I repeat: when we book guests, that's our goal: gender parity.

The Agenda has been on the air for eight years and we actually care so much about striving to hit that target, we once did a program about it. You can watch it above, or see it here.  We jokingly called it "Binders Full of Women," as a takeoff on the Mitt Romney quote. The program got a ton of feedback.

But alas, we didn't get any increase in female guests on the program".

The Agenda's staff wonder whether "there is something in women's DNA that makes them harder to book".

Please read Paikin's blog and respond.

19/03/14 | (0) Comments

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Advancing gender equality in media

In my opinion, the most effective strategy to achieve gender-sensitive media is:

Increased gender-awareness training of media professionals
Greater action by audiences to hold their media accountable
Stricter enforcement of gender-focussed media codes and policies
More female journalists, editors and media house managers


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