The IAB today announced a number of industry initiatives and partnerships at their annual marque event, IAB Engage, which this year took place on 7 June at its spiritual home, the Barbican.
The first announcement Jon Mew, CEO, IAB UK, gave from the stage was an update on the IAB Gold Standard.
Initially announced at Engage 2017 - a mere 9 months ago, the IAB Gold Standard sets specific requirements for media owners, publishers and ad tech providers to tackle key issues in digital advertising. The IAB is delighted to confirm that 27 member companies have now been successfully awarded the Gold Standard certification. An additional 61 are registered with a maximum of six months to complete their certification.
The Gold Standard is only awarded to companies meeting set criteria who give evidence of their company's commitment to raising standards through:
1. Reducing ad fraud by adopting the ADS.txt initiative.
2. Increasing brand safety through the JICWEBS DTSG Good Practice Principles.
3. Improving the digital advertising experience by adhering to the LEAN ad standards and avoiding the use of the 12 'bad ad' formats identified by the Coalition for Better Advertising.
The second update from Mew was the announcement that IAB UK has partnered with MIND, the UK mental health charity.
In April, IAB UK was awarded a Silver in Mind's 'Workplace Wellbeing Index', a benchmark of best policy and practice, which celebrates the work employers are doing to promote and support positive mental health. This inspired an ongoing dialogue, which has resulted in an exciting plan to deliver further support to this essential charity. As part of this partnership, the IAB will host a hack day to crowdsource ideas from the membership to drive awareness of mental health issues within the digital advertising industry and the support available.
Commenting on the partnership, Emma Mamo, Head of Workplace Wellbeing at Mind, said:
"Our Index of almost 44,000 employees, has found that almost half (48 per cent) had experienced poor mental health, such as stress, low mood, and anxiety, which underlines the importance of offering a supportive working environment for all employees. IAB's Silver Index Award shows their commitment to making mental health a priority. They are ideally placed to inspire the broader digital industry to take these issues seriously and we are excited to see the projects we develop together to address workplace wellbeing."
The penultimate announcement from Mew was the launch of an IAB Inclusion & Diversity Advisory Group.
The objective for this group is to encourage, support and promote best practice around diversity and inclusion. This will cover everything from recruitment and employee best practices, training and other initiatives that will help member companies address this essential issue.
The final announcement at Engage 2018 was that IAB UK has been recognised as a Carbon Neutral Organisation by the Carbon Footprint Standard. The organisation has offset their footprint by reducing energy emissions and planting trees in the UK as well as supporting efforts in protecting the Amazon rainforest.
"The theme for this year's Engage was Moving Forward. These very different announcements encapsulate this ambition. The IAB has a mandate to celebrate the successes of our members and the broader industry. However, we also have an obligation to support industry in tackling issues where we see room for improvement. Whether that's through initiatives like the Gold Standard and tackling inclusiveness and diversity head on, through to ensuring the industry takes mental health seriously, it is imperative on us all to work hard to deliver a robust and sustainable future for digital advertising. I am delighted to be making these announcements at IAB Engage this year".