23rd March 2004





Governors of the BBC should be elected by licence fee payers, according to a new professor at the University of Lincoln.


Professor of Broadcasting Policy, Sylvia Harvey, believes that licence fee payers play a vital role in financing the BBC and should therefore elect the governors of the institution.


“The BBC is a tremendously important institution in British life and widely respected abroad.  As listeners and viewers we could play a greater part in determining the leadership of the institution and help to ensure its independence from the government of the day,” said Professor Harvey.


“The BBC is also the largest producer of original programmes in the UK and contributes both to the economy and to our cultural life. It is important that it emerges from the current charter review process as a strong organisation, serving the many different communities of interest within the country.


“At the University of Lincoln we are very aware of the role that the BBC plays as a cutting-edge maker and commissioner of programmes. This is the kind of work for which we are preparing our students.  And while there are many possible media career paths from work in radio and TV to web design and public relations, the BBC has a very special role in nurturing some of the best creative talent in the UK.”


Professor Harvey recently joined the Faculty of Media and Humanities from Sheffield Hallam University.


She is Principal Associate Director of the Arts and Humanities Research Board Centre for British Film and Television Studies.  The centre provides an important focus for national research work on British film and television policy and is a key driver for the long-term research plans of the faculty.


Professor Harvey has written extensively on the subjects of film theory, documentary and independent film, Channel 4 television, media policy and broadcasting regulation.


In Britain she has acted as an advisor to the Arts Council, Yorkshire Arts, the BBC, the Universities Funding Council and the British Film Institute.  She is also a Fellow of the Royal Society of Arts.


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