The Broadcasters of the Future - New Generation Thinkers 2018
BBC Radio 3, BBC Arts and the Arts and Humanities Research Council (AHRC) have today announced 2018’s cohort of New Generation Thinkers; ten academics at the start of their careers who have a flair for communicating their research to the public. The scheme includes the opportunity to make radio and television programmes for the BBC.
The ten New Generation Thinkers were selected after a nationwide search for the best academic ideas with the potential to be shared through the media. They will now have the opportunity to make programmes for Radio 3 and other outlets, as well as contributing to wider media through the AHRC. In addition, the scheme partners with BBC Four, where some of the selected academics will be given the opportunity to present a programme for TV.
This year’s specialisms cover an eclectic spectrum of the arts and humanities; all with the potential to reach a broad public audience. Some academics are looking afresh at historical topics, with explorations into 18th-century masculinity and the medical history of George Orwell sitting alongside research into early 20th-century vegetarianism in Britain, and how the Ottoman Empire dealt with piracy.
Others in the new intake are exploring more contemporary issues, such as the way globalisation is impacting how films are made around the world, or how the ethics of commercial surrogacy in India can be understood.
The New Generation Thinkers were selected from hundreds of applications from academics at the start of their careers. They have all demonstrated a passion for communicating their work and a skill for making complex areas of study engaging, accessible, and enlightening.
The final ten were chosen after a four-month selection process, including a series of day-long workshops at the BBC in Salford and London. They have undergone training and development with the AHRC and will spend a year being mentored by producers from Radio 3’s Free Thinking programme.
The selected academics will be publicly unveiled at a free event recorded as part of BBC Radio 3’s Free Thinking Festival at Sage Gateshead on Saturday 10 March and broadcast on BBC Radio 3 on Tuesday 3 April at 10pm. As with all Free Thinking programmes, the broadcast will also be on the BBC Radio 3 website and as an Arts and Ideas podcast. Further programmes focused on the NGT’s research will be aired throughout 2018.
Alan Davey, Controller, BBC Radio 3, says: “Radio 3’s mission is to connect our audiences with pioneering music and culture and since its launch in 2010, the New Generation Thinkers has been a central part of this. The scheme has supported and nurtured some extraordinary academic talent, giving the broadcasters of tomorrow a platform through which to present their fascinating and thought-provoking research to our listeners, and I can’t wait to hear what ideas these ten exciting thinkers will bring to us in the coming year.”
Robyn Read, Editor of Free Thinking, says: “I love discovering the academics’ fascinating research and am always looking for ways to integrate it into Free Thinking discussions, linking their findings with new exhibitions, books, plays, films, television and topical discussion we cover on the programme. Their insights give fresh perspectives to our cultural coverage, and I hope that the experience we can offer them of working with radio production is equally valuable to their academic careers.”
Professor Andrew Thompson, Chief Executive of the AHRC, says: “This scheme is all about helping the next generation of academics to find new and wider audiences for their research by giving them a platform to share their ideas and allowing them to have the space to challenge our thinking.
The New Generation Thinkers scheme is also one of the AHRC’s major vehicles for engaging the public with the inspiring research taking place across the UK. More than ever we need the new insights and knowledge that come from arts and humanities researchers to help us navigate through the complexities of our globalised world and address the moral and ethical challenges of today and tomorrow.”
Contact Benjamin Ward for the AHRC on firstname.lastname@example.org / +44 (0) 7837 134 193
Or Madeleine Castell for the BBC on email@example.com /+44 (0) 7753 309065
The 2018 New Generation Thinkers are:
Dr Ben Anderson
Lecturer in Twentieth-Century European History,
School of Humanities, Keele University.
Dr Gulzaar Barn
Lecturer in Philosophy at the University of Birmingham
Dr Daisy Black
Lecturer, English Literature, University of Wolverhampton
Dr Dafydd Mills Daniel
McDonald Departmental Lecturer in Christian Ethics and Lecturer in Theology
Jesus College, University of Oxford
Dr Des Fitzgerald
Lecturer in Sociology, Cardiff University
Dr Sarah Goldsmith
Leverhulme Early Career Fellow, Centre for Urban History and School of History, University of Leicester
Dr Lisa J Mullen
Steven Isenberg Junior Research Fellow, Worcester College, University of Oxford
Dr Elsa Richardson
Chancellor’s Fellow, Centre for the Social History of Health and Healthcare, Strathclyde University, Glasgow
Dr Iain Robert Smith
Lecturer in Film Studies, King’s College London
Dr Michael Talbot
Lecturer in the History of the Ottoman Empire and Modern Middle East, Department of History, Politics and Social Sciences, University of Greenwich
Biographies of all ten 2018 New Generation Thinkers are available here.
Communications Manager (Press and Media) - Toby Shergold T: 01793 416 082 E: firstname.lastname@example.org
NOTES TO EDITOR
BBC Radio 3
Since it launched in 1946, the Third Programme/ BBC Radio 3 has been a bold pioneer in the cultural world. It is one of the world’s foremost presenters, creators, commissioners and curators across classical, folk, world, jazz and contemporary music as well as drama, philosophy and ideas. The station has always nurtured extraordinary artistic talents, provided a platform for important scientific and political debates/announcements, and broadcast ground-breaking experimental drama – always while delivering its core aim of connecting audiences with pioneering music and culture. The station is also the most significant commissioner of new and contemporary music in the UK, with 35 new works commissioned annually and broadcasts over 600 concerts a year, including live broadcasts from the greatest classical music festival in the world (BBC Proms). Radio 3’s In Concert programme alone reaches the equivalent of 250 packed concert halls a week, and the BBC Orchestras and Choirs give around 400 concerts a year in over 60 UK locations.
The Arts and Humanities Research Council funds world-class, independent researchers in a wide range of subjects: history, archaeology, digital content, philosophy, languages, design, heritage, area studies, the creative and performing arts, and much more. This financial year the AHRC will spend approximately £98 million to fund research and postgraduate training, in collaboration with a number of partners. The quality and range of research supported by this investment of public funds not only provides social and cultural benefits and contributes to the economic success of the UK but also to the culture and welfare of societies around the globe. You can find out more information via www.ahrc.ac.uk or following us on Twitter at @ahrcpress, on Facebook at Arts and Humanities Research Council, or Instagram at @ahrcpress.
The BBC has an ongoing commitment to arts programming – “the greatest commitment to arts for a generation” as announced by the Director General in 2014. The BBC aims to provide the broadest range and depth of music and arts programmes across television, radio and online. It creates non-commercial partnerships with the arts sector that go beyond broadcast, from sharing expertise to encouraging cross collaboration and creation in order to widen public engagement in UK arts. It aims to provide context through original, fresh discussion and perspectives and is the biggest investor and creator of original arts and music programming. In 2017 Tony Hall BBC Director General, announced Culture UK, a new approach to collaboration, commissioning and creativity in partnership with Arts Council England, the Arts Council of Northern Ireland, the Arts Council of Wales, the British Council and Creative Scotland. The initiative will develop UK-wide cultural festivals that can reach new audiences, support artist-led commissioning in broadcast and digital media.
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