Gender Bias & Inclusion in Advertising in India

Analysis of gender representation in 1,000 most viewed advertisements in India on TV and YouTube during 2019

Joytishma Rai, age 17, Beesakopi Tea Estate, Dibrughar district, Assam at her house on June 30, 2019


This study assesses the role of advertising media in reinforcing and challenging harmful gender roles that shape the lives of girls and women in the country. UNICEF and the Geena Davis Institute on Gender in Media analyzed the top 1,000 most viewed ads in India in 2019 on television and on YouTube. This is the first public study to systematically analyze gender representations in ads in India to serve as a benchmark for making advertising more gender-sensitive in the country.  The findings show that although female characters are prominent in ads in India, they are still highly stereotyped: less likely to be shown in public spaces and in paid employment; more likely to be selling domestic products and food to other women as well as responsible for childcare and shopping. Recommendations are given to content creators for driving an advertising landscape that promotes equity as well as positive and empowering gender norms.

NOTE: Use the dropdown menu on the right to download the main report and the executive summary report.

Geena Davis Institute on Gender in Media and UNICEF
Publication date