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Advancing inclusion for black professionals

Advancing inclusion for black professionals

Our profession can only deliver to the public advantage if we reflect the needs and experiences of the diverse societies we serve.

We want to see an inclusive profession where every individual has an equal opportunity to add their unique perspective, to develop and fulfil their potential, and to succeed to the fullest extent of their ambition. This is the only way we will succeed in addressing the challenges we face in the built and natural environment, which are becoming ever more complex, global and interconnected.

RICS’ Global CEO Sean Tompkins recently made a personal commitment alongside other RICS leaders to meet with black professionals to hear their experience of working in our sector. These ongoing conversations have shown us that we have a long way to go in building the inclusive profession we all want to see. Not least, because black professionals represent just 2% of RICS members[1].

As a result, RICS is announcing steps to improve the experience and representation of black professionals – and to champion diversity and inclusion more broadly – as core priorities in our day-to-day work as a global professional body.

[1] Among the 40% that have declared


Richard Collins, Executive Director of the Profession, and RICS’ executive sponsor for diversity and inclusion who is leading these initiatives, said:

“We are listening and will continue to listen to the views and experiences of black professionals. This can only be a first step, as the need for action is clearer than ever.

"We will be working with our profession to drive positive change that will improve opportunity for black professionals, build a more diverse profession, and inspire new generations of talent to join and be welcomed within our industry.”

Read the full statement here

As its first steps, in the UK and US, RICS will:

  • Launch a reverse mentoring programme to create opportunities for black professionals at all levels and senior leaders to share their experiences and career perspectives with each other.

(To register your interest in becoming part of our panel or participate in reverse mentoring, please contact us here)

  • Ensure that the next RICS profession salary survey gathers information to throw light on the ethnicity pay gap and help inform next steps.
  • Conduct and publish details of its own ethnicity pay gap alongside its statutory gender pay reporting. 
  • Seek firms prepared to take part in, and publish their ethnicity pay gap data ahead of any statutory requirements in the UK.
  • Immediately establish a panel of black professionals willing to contribute to seminars, articles, public engagements, to address the current lack of black role models.

These initial steps are just a beginning. An international programme of work will be developed, and RICS will be reviewing and updating its broader diversity strategy and action plans for the profession later in the year.

Stay informed

We will continue to update this page with new information and further initiatives.

We asked RICS professionals from different backgrounds about representation and their hopes for 2021

Find out more