EA had a big push on the issues of diversity and inclusion in 2020, committing itself to a number of key initiatives ahead of both Black Lives Matter and a resurgence of #MeToo allegations. It also committed to supporting this year’s Women in Games Awards 2020, an involvement we’re proud to announce today.
Samantha Ebelthite, UK&I country manager told us: “I’m delighted that we are supporting the Women in Games Awards. It’s been a challenging year so far but it remains important to take time to celebrate our success together.
“The diversity conversation has accelerated significantly since the last awards ceremony and we have all been given reason to look closely at what we do to support minorities both in our personal and professional lives.”
Ebelthite sees the benefits of such diversity for the industry both internally and externally.
“Studies show a correlation between higher levels of diversity and positive company performance and it is vital for the continued growth and success of our business and our industry. Greater diversity in the people making games leads to more diversity of thought and creativity and with that more interesting games that better reflect those who enjoy them.
“Change is underway but there is still more to do, to encourage and foster diversity and ensure our work environments are inclusive. Recent events have shown just how much more and that each of us has to make tangible commitments if we are to make our industry a safe, nurturing and positive environment for everyone who works within it.
“There is still work to be done, but with an open minded approach and a clear commitment to this being a priority I am optimistic about what the future holds.”
And EA has been proactive in taking a stance on such matters, such as the Positive Play Charter, which has been in the works since initial meetings at EA Play in 2019.
“At EA we recently launched the Positive Play Charter to ensure that being part of a gaming community is a fun, fair, positive and safe experience for all. We have made it clear that there is no room for harmful behaviour in the worlds we create or communities we nurture,” for more on that read our interview on the charter.
“As a publisher we signed up as one of the five founding partners of the #RaisetheGame pledge,” launched by Ukie back in February, “and have committed to providing annual updates on our progress in making meaningful change, from recruitment, to creating more inclusive and welcoming workplaces, and reflecting greater diversity at every level and position of our company. We have policies in place that ensure diversity is at the fore of multiple aspects of our business from recruitment through to development.”
And Ebelthite is clear that she will drive that change forwards: “Diversity and inclusion are core values for EA and we have made much progress for our employees, in our games and in our communities but as an individual and a leader I have committed to the pursuit of more and educating myself and my teams on the steps we have yet to take.
“We are an adaptable industry, with many capable, progressive people driving us forward. There is still work to be done, but with an open minded approach and a clear commitment to this being a priority I am optimistic about what the future holds.”
We look forward to the award on November 25th and we’ve devised a flexible event to allow us to celebrate the contribution of women to the industry – whatever the circumstance at that time. For now please enter yourself, and encourage your colleagues and friends to enter too.