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Diversity, Equity & inclusion

We believe in the transformative power of diversity of thought

Join NAREIM to help benchmark and share real-time best practices, promoting inclusion, diversity and equity in the real estate investment management industry

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results, volume III (2024)

key takeaways:

  • Almost all CRE firms have DEI initiatives in place in their organizations, with the number of firms adopting formal strategies increasing 5% year-over-year. A total of 56.4% of firms enact formal strategies. 

  • CRE firms are also increasingly focused on attracting more underrepresented people to the industry as a whole – with 31.6% of firms saying the most impactful DEI policy in 2023 was creating scholarships and internships to increase diversity in candidate pools, up from just 18% of firms the year prior.

Regional snapshots:
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  • 39.8% of all commercial real estate roles in Europe are held by women, with women making the most gains in 2023 at the executive management.

  • 25.4% of executive management roles are held by women, up from 12.9% in the year prior.

  • European firms also actively hired and promoted women for the most senior roles in their organizations in 2023. At the executive management and senior level, firms promoted and hired more women than was represented. 

  • 41.4% of FTEs in commercial real estate in the US are women, while almost 30% of employees are from underrepresented racial/ethnic groups.

  • The underrepresented race/ethnicity group with the highest percentage of FTEs is Asian (9.8%), followed by Hispanic/Latino (9.4%) and Black or African American (7.2%).

  • At the board of directors level, the representation of people of color increased more than 50% rising to almost 15% of all board roles – up from just 9% in 2022.

  • The top 10 roles held by men, women, white professionals and people of color are also listed. See the attached PDF for more details.

The US
  • 45.6% of all employees are women – the highest for any region surveyed. 

  • 27.4% of board of director positions in Canada are held by women, the highest for any region.

  • Women at Canadian CRE firms comprised nearly half of all mid-level promotions (48.4%) and hires (47.6%) in 2023, exceeding the representation of women at that level of seniority.

  • 44.8% of employees are women, with Asia-Pacific firms actively promoting more women to executive management roles and hiring women to mid-level roles in 2023.

  • Similar to other regions, the proportion of women declines as we move up the organizational hierarchy, from women representing 52% of roles at the junior level to 41.9% at the mid-level and gradually decreasing to 17.3% at the board level.

  • Budgets: Dedicated DEI budgets are increasingly important for improving representation by underrepresented groups. In 2023, 36.3% of firms had dedicated DEI budgets, up from 30.4% in 2022 – a YoY increase of 19%.

  • Dimensions of diversity: Nine out of 10 respondents address race/ethnicity/nationality within their DEI programs followed by gender, sexual orientation and age. More firms are also tracking family status in 2023 than in the prior year, while firms tracking mental health conditions has also increased.

  • Impact: Providing DEI-related training is the second most impactful DEI policy after creating scholarships and internships. One quarter of firms have seen training have the greatest impact on achieving DEI goals, up from 14.6% YoY.


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global real estate DEI Survey

The Global Real Estate DEI Survey volume III was released on Jan 17, 2024, and is now supported by 19 commercial real estate industry associations globally. 


Volume III tracked DEI practices and employee demographics at 216 firms, with data collected between July and September 2023.

The Survey represents 296,902 full-time real estate employees, $1.98 trillion of assets under management and a cross-section of the commercial real estate industry globally in terms of size, region and business type.

  • DEI program structure, resources and ownership

  • Policies focused on recruitment, retention, training and development, inclusivity, tracking and accountability and pay equity

  • Employee demographics by gender, race/ethnicity, across seniority and job function for the US and by gender across Asia Pacific, Canada and Europe.

  • DEI hiring, promotion and departure trends year-over-year.

The Global Real Estate DEI Survey is conducted in partnership with: AFIRE, AIA, APREA, AREF, BOMA, BPF, CFMA, CoreNet Global, CREFC, EPRA, Ferguson Partners, NAIOP, NAREIM, NCREIF, OSCRE, PFA, PREA, RICS, REALPAC and ULI.


nareim ERG meetings: Black & latinx 

NAREIM is proud to invite employees of NAREIM member firms to two industry-wide ERG meetings: the Black Real Estate Roundtable and the Latinx Real Estate Roundtable.

The Roundtables are intended to facilitate networking for Black and Latinx professionals in real estate investment management, across seniority and across functional groups.

"The Roundtables provide an atmosphere unlike most in the industry, one in which we can celebrate how far the real estate industry has come while simultaneously seeking out how to best prepare for those coming up behind us," Carl Boswell, Director, National Real Estate Advisors.


on DEI

As part of the work of NAREIM's DEI Committee, NAREIM has produced a series of interviews focused on investor perspectives on DEI.


In 20220 and 2021, NAREIM  invited institutional investors to sit down and discuss their perspectives on diversity and inclusion and how they are working with investment managers to deliver lasting change for the industry. 

Interviews include investors from:

  • Carnegie

  • Oregon and Texas ERS

  • CalSTRS and The World Bank

  • StepStone


read the investor perspectives here

NAREIM DEI committee

Chair: Rachna Velamati, Chief Diversity Officer, Heitman
Vice chairS: 
Reisa Bryan, CEO, Omni/Nuveen Real Estate

Erick Harris, GC, Blue Vista Capital Management

Kayla Bolton, Alidade Capital

Alexandra Williams, Barings Real Estate

Chasity Boyce, Barings Real Estate

Kelsey Harstad, Belay Investment Group

Justinn Wheatley-West, BGO
Jennifer Licciardi, Berkshire Residential
Erick Harris, Blue Vista Capital Management
Stuart Bernstein, CapRidge Partners

Dave Kutayiah, Clarion Partners
Kathy Briscoe/Tyler Scheppman, Dermody Properties

Deena Goodman, PGIM Real Estate

Pat Bailey, Principal Real Estate Investors

Anne Peck, TA Realty

Allen Rubin, Unico Properties

The NAREIM DEI committee is focused on: The Global Real Estate DEI Survey and member partnerships.

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