Kennedys drives greater transparency around diversity and inclusion with US and UK Mansfield Rule certifications

Kennedys has achieved Mansfield Certification Plus in both the US and the UK in its first submission year.   

The Mansfield Rule, a project run by the Diversity Lab, is a 12-month certification process which aims to boost the representation of historically underrepresented lawyers in law firm leadership. It aims to increase and sustain diversity in leadership within law firms by broadening the pool of women lawyers, LGBTQ+ lawyers, lawyers with disabilities, and underrepresented racial and/or ethnic lawyers who are being considered for senior lateral job openings, firm governance opportunities, equity partner promotions, and firm leadership positions. Firms must also create and publish job descriptions and appointment/election policies for leadership roles.

Firms participating in Mansfield 5.0, the fifth iteration of the project, were also asked, for the first time, to consider at least 30% underrepresented lawyers when hiring and promoting to C-level or other senior-level professional staff roles and for nominations to Chambers USA.

Kennedys has always been committed to D&I but participating in Mansfield provided both a structure and a mechanism for accountability that allowed us to move beyond words to concrete action

To achieve Mansfield 5.0 Certification Plus and Mansfield UK Certification Plus, we collaborated with Diversity Lab over a 12-month certification period with built-in measurement, transparency, and accountability mechanisms.

Meg Catalano, US regional managing partner and global board member said: “Kennedys has always been committed to D&I but participating in Mansfield provided both a structure and a mechanism for accountability that allowed us to move beyond words to concrete action. It was a turning point for all of us and has allowed us to continue to identify concrete goals for the future.”

Ingrid Hobbs, a London based partner who leads Kennedys’ Complex casualty coverage team and is a global board member commented: “Over the past year, our US and UK offices have been working closely together to further integrate diversity, equity and inclusion across the entire firm. We know that drawing on diverse perspectives and learning from different experiences enriches our law firm and equips us look after our people and provide excellent service to our clients.”

Kavita Ramakrishnan, Diversity Lab’s Mansfield Rule and Knowledge Sharing Senior Director said: “It takes a lot of work for firms to make even incremental changes to longstanding systems, and it is an absolute honour for the Diversity Lab team to see what these firms have achieved over the course of the year-long certification cycle. The firms enthusiastically engaged with Mansfield’s rigorous challenges while sharing learnings with each other to ensure a collective “win.”

While the Mansfield Rule originated in the US, it rolled out its first UK based version in July 2021, with Kennedys being one of the first to sign up.

To achieve certification, a firm must:

  • Consider at least 30% historically underrepresented lawyers for 70% or more of the firm’s leadership roles, committees, and activities during the review period July 15, 2021 to July 14, 2022.
  • Track and document the makeup of candidate pools by demographic identity
  • Complete the three-month, six-month, and annual check-in surveys and data collection requests.
  • Engage in community building and knowledge sharing with participating firms.

For the last five years we have been a global partner of the Lloyd’s of London Dive In Festival – a global movement in the insurance sector to support the development of inclusive workplace cultures. Its mission is to enable people to achieve their potential by raising awareness of the business case and promoting positive action for diversity in all its forms.