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Freshfields publishes second annual D&I Review

Freshfields Bruckhaus Deringer (Freshfields') has published its second annual Diversity and Inclusion Review, highlighting progress on the firm’s five-year global targets for gender, race and ethnicity, and LGBTQ+ representation.

The firm has continued to make strong progress this year against its global targets for 2021 - 2026 and is on track to meet the majority of its targets, some ahead of schedule, including:

  • Gender balance: New partners* will be at least 40% women and 40% men (with the remaining 20% men, women, or non-binary): To date, we have made great progress and are on track to meet our goal - 48% of our new partners are women.
  • Key global leadership functions** will have ethnic diversity and at least 40% women and 40% men (20% men, women or non-binary): Now stands at 35% women and ethnically diverse representation on some committees (based on available data).
  • Doubling the number of Black associates at the firm by 2026: We have reached our target and doubled the number of Black associates in our firm three years ahead of schedule.
  • A LGBTQ+ global partnership target of at least 5% by 2026: We have reached our target of 5%, three years ahead of schedule.

Freshfields’ second D&I Review also shares perspectives from colleagues who are driving change and updates on initiatives and programmes that ensure the firm continues to progress, collaborating with clients and leading organisations with shared goals. This includes empowering women in tech, disability inclusion, local programmes focused on access to opportunity and LGBTQ+ Pride.

Senior partner Georgia Dawson said: “I am very pleased to see such positive early progress on our global targets. Freshfields’ D&I strategy is built upon the principles of 'belong, engage and excel' which aim to embed commitments and help colleagues understand the roles they can play in creating meaningful change.

“We recognise that there is still work to do, and we will continue to be transparent about progress made on the ambitious targets we have set. Our annual D&I Review is also a fantastic opportunity for us to pause, reflect and reset, and to thank those in the firm who do so much to move forward our efforts throughout the year.”

Helen Ouseley, Global Head of Diversity, Inclusion & Wellbeing, commented: “As many in professional services industries can attest, our collective efforts to be truly inclusive and ensure demonstrable progress for diverse representation is an ongoing journey. While there is a long way to go, it is important we celebrate our progress, and recognise the colleagues across the firm who inspire us to drive change every day.”

To view the full report, click here.

- Ends -

Notes to editors

* New partners include internal promotions and lateral partner hires. Reporting window for all data is from launch in March 2021 to March 2023 and is based on self-identification data.

**Board, sub-committees, ExCo and MDs.