Addressing and preventing sexist advertising: an analysis of local and global promising practice

Gurrieri L, Hoffman R.
Published: 29 October 2019

This research paper explores the efficacy of interventions that aim to address sexism or promote progressive gender representations in advertising, highlighting examples of local and global promising practice.

Interventions to prevent or address sexist advertising may occur through several distinct mechanisms: legislative frameworks; self-regulatory and co-regulatory systems; the provision of educational resources to the broader community; industry initiatives to re-shape advertising culture and promote diverse, inclusive and ethical practice; and the exertion of influence on advertisers and regulators through consumer activism. The paper explores the strengths and limitations of each mechanism and illustrates interventions in practice through a variety of case studies. Critical to addressing sexist advertising is a whole of system approach with mutually reinforcing interventions that capitalise on different opportunities for influence. Concluding summations are offered throughout with a range of recommendations drawn from these at the end of the paper.

This research is part of WHV’s Advertising (In)equality project, funded by the Victorian Government.

A snapshot of the research, produced by Women's Health Victoria, is available to download in the Related Resources section.


Gurrieri L, Hoffman R. (2019) Addressing and preventing sexist advertising: an analysis of lcoal and global promising practice. RMIT University. Melbourne. DOI: 10.25916/5db23f21e835b

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