Faaez Samadi
Dec 4, 2018

Six out of 10 Australian creatives at risk of depression

TOP OF THE CHARTS: First in-depth study into mental illness in the creative, media and marketing industries finds high stress levels, but also high literacy and support.

Six out of 10 Australian creatives at risk of depression

Nearly two-thirds of people in Australia’s creative industry have shown symptoms of depression, according to the first major study looking at mental illness in the country’s media, marketing and creative industries from Never Not Creative, Everymind and UnLtd.

Interviewing more than 1,800 participants across the industries between August and September this year, the study seeks to understand the mental health issues facing the marketing and communications industries in Australia. The study used the Depression, Anxiety and Stress Scale to identify symptoms of depression and anxiety.

Of its many findings, among the more alarming is that the creative industry showed higher levels of depression, with 61% of respondents showing symptoms of depression, compared to 53% in marketing and 46% in media. Overall, 57% of participants showed symptoms of stress, and 18% signs of severe or extremely severe stress.

However, the creative, media and marketing world is literate about mental health issues, the study found, and 89% of participants said they were willing to work closely with someone with depression, indicating a highly supportive attitude. Yet the study said only around a third of businesses currently offer mental health support, which must be improved significantly.

Stigma issues also decreased with age—26% of 17- to 24-year-olds felt a person with mental health problems would be mistreated in the creative, marketing and media industries, compared to 48% of 45- to 54-year-olds.  

“Now that we know the issues, we will be identifying the right solutions to help make our industry more mentally healthy,” said Andy Wright, founder of Never Not Creative. “We’d like to launch a resource hub for various tips and tools around mental health specifically for people working in our industry and we will be working with our community to address some of the contributing factors identified in the study.”

If you or someone you care about needs help, please seek help in your country. For example, the Samaritans can be reached 24 hours a day at 1800 221 4444 in Singapore and 2896-0000 in Hong Kong. 

Related Articles

Just Published

1 day ago

Purpose, laughs, and boppable tunes: Spikes jury ...

SPIKES ASIA X CAMPAIGN: Presidents and members of several Spikes Asia juries share the top trends they spotted in the jury Zoom rooms, with video examples.

1 day ago

Crash Course: How to tell engaging short-form stories

To round off a week of creativity-themed content during Spikes Asia X Campaign festival, this Crash Course provides useful tips on how to build story arcs and create thumb-stopping campaigns for short-form.

1 day ago

Lessons from Tesla, Apple and yoga (yes, yoga) in ...

SPIKES ASIA X CAMPAIGN: Creatives need to drive relevance for sustainable options, instead of virtue-signalling about sustainability, argues Gulshan Singh of FCB Interface.

1 day ago

Spikes Asia Awards 2021: Campaign's contenders 3

As the juries make their final selections ahead of the March 1 winners announcement, Campaign Asia-Pacific's editorial team has once again scoured through the 2021 shortlist to pick out the work we expect to win.