D&AD launches Foundation Council to boost talent and diversity

D&AD has launched its first Foundation Council, with a mission to boost its New Blood talent programme and promote diversity.

Tim Lindsay, the chief executive of D&AD
Tim Lindsay, the chief executive of D&AD

Havas Worldwide, WPP, Leo Burnett, Wieden & Kennedy and Bartle Bogle Hegarty have signed up to support the initiative.

The Foundation Council is aiming to use the knowledge and experience from 35 years of student awards, as well as running learning programmes such as the WPP New Blood Academy, to deliver industry-led projects that ensure anyone with talent can succeed. 

The first council will work on three projects in the first year, such as co-creating the D&AD curriculum based on the themes of the year’s awards. Over the next three years the curriculum will develop into a series of free courses, available globally to help people further their professional skills. 

Another project, called Investing in Talent, will comprise a fund to support people who come through New Blood and lack the finance to realise their ideas.

And a new programme, New Blood Shift, will aim to find creative excellence through a free 12-week night school for young people who have not been through the traditional university route. Participants will also be provided with mentoring and the opportunity to work on paid placements. 

Paul Drake, the D&AD Foundation director, said: "As a non-profit, D&AD already invests in programmes like New Blood that inspire the next generation of creative talent and encourage the creative industry to work towards a fairer, more sustainable future.

"But we want to do more. Diversity and equal opportunities are a hot topic within the creative industries, but despite all the talk there hasn’t been enough action. This is something that we want to change."


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