Supported by the foundation, the initiative is part of an effort to make diversity a priority for these institutions.

Published in The New York Times

New York City plans to study the diversity of its cultural groups

By Robin Pogrebin

In a major study to be undertaken this summer, the de Blasio administration will review the diversity of the boards, staffs and audiences of New York City cultural organizations, such as museums, orchestras and dance troupes.

“If you’re living in a city like we are in New York—with 65 percent people of color right now—maybe we’re missing out on some of the talent if we don’t have diverse audiences, staffs and boards,” said Tom Finkelpearl, the city’s commissioner of cultural affairs, whose department will commission the study.

Mr. Finkelpearl said there was no good data on the racial, ethnic or gender makeup of New York cultural organizations and their audiences, and that the study, to be done by an outside vendor, would help make clear that diversity should be a priority for institutions when it comes to naming trustees or hiring employees

“Over 90 percent of staffs at museums nationally are white,” Mr. Finkelpearl said.

The Ford Foundation

The Ford Foundation is an independent organization working to address inequality and build a future grounded in justice. For more than 85 years, it has supported visionaries on the frontlines of social change worldwide, guided by its mission to strengthen democratic values, reduce poverty and injustice, promote international cooperation, and advance human achievement. Today, with an endowment of $16 billion, the foundation has headquarters in New York and 10 regional offices across Africa, Asia, Latin America, and the Middle East.

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