Bringing together local and international D&I

Research, reflections and Romanian practices. The latest comprehensive D&I publication in Europe combines critical contributions with inspiring initiatives.

The founding process of the Romanian Diversity charter was designed to ensure the best possible success for the initiative. A local consortium consulted and involved a wide range of stakeholders, sought inspiration from other European self-commitment projects, and finally got endorsed by various types of organizations. As a result, a multi-stakeholders platform has been, since two years, providing a new framework for addressing diversity in Romania, including multiple linkages with International partners.

Celebrating 2 years and 110 signatories with 157,000 employees

As a large collaborative project, the Romanian Diversity Charter has just published a comprehensive brochure to mark its two-year anniversary. The publication is the result of a teamwork of the Romanian Diversity Charter, their signatories, partners, researchers and ambassadors. It is, in a contemporary way, describing the concept of diversity management in the workplace with a particular focus on Romanian realities. The project aims at conceptualising an overview of diversity in the particular Romanian context, at the same time utilising International perspectives. This includes an abstract on the reasoning behind viewing diversity management as a core driver for the competitiveness of business leaders within a socio- economic environment but also a number of critical reflections.

A baseline, basic overview

One core element of the publication is the first local D&I survey carried out from August to December 2019, covering 77 organisations. Respondents were entrepreneurs, managers or HR specialists in charge of implementing D&I principles in their respective bodies. The results provide insights regarding the way Romanian organizations relate to D&I principles, their proclaimed intentions and the approach they have chosen. It shows a strong belief in the value of D&I but also a comparably low commitment to invest in change. One reason may well be the predominant perception of D&I being a matter of equal opportunities – rather than pro-active leverage.

Multiple content dimensions

It is hence particularly valuable that the 88 pages publication presents six editorial contributions and five expert interviews to illustrate the various paradigms of D&I in a way that encourages readers to take a closer look. In addition, fifteen D&I practical examples of managing workforce diversity were selected from the signatories with the aim to show the practicability and value of active D&I management. With their signature, these employers and their signatory peers have publicly agreed to the principles of the Charter, specifically to diversity, equal opportunities and social inclusion and to acknowledging and respecting values in Romania. For many companies in Europe, signing a Charter marked a kick- off and laid out a framework to establish advanced policies.

Committing to ongoing improvement

While a key mission of Diversity Charters is to celebrate success, experts like Dana Oancea, Project Manager of the Romanian Diversity Charter, point out that “we must also acknowledge that other companies have still a long way to go”. For her, the publication therefore “also explores some key challenges to inclusion from an organizational diversity and inclusion perspective”. This particular aspect prompted the European D&I Engineer, Michael Stuber, to also contribute to the publication. With a focus on organisations that are proud of their initial achievements, he explores what he calls ‘Next Level D&I’. His credo: even elaborate D&I practices may contain blind spots and even mature D&I formats may have to be further developed in an ever changing business landscape.

Taking the best of local and international perspectives

The publication shows, in a unique way, how the energy and inspiration from International companies – operating in Romania – can be effectively combined with the perspectives and experiences of local stakeholders. The latter are able to flag out pain points and to challenge assumptions in order to ensure that the needs of various diversity groups are addressed as the local D&I agendas are being ramped up. In this context, it is particularly valuable to read about disability, LGBT or Roma inclusion alongside the more universal gender issues. Two corporate contributions also looks at age diversity and ‘generation balance+’ respectively.

Overall, the publication caters to a significant bandwidth of readers, from beginners and intermediate to advanced D&I practitioners.

You can download the brochure at