This project is primarily a collaboration between Dr Mel Bunce (City, University of London), Dr Martin Scott (University of East Anglia) and Dr Kate Wright (Edinburgh University). Both Kate and Mel are former journalists, whilst Martin has authored numerous reports about international news coverage. All three researchers have published numerous academic and non-academic outputs about journalism and international affairs. Professor Dan Brockington (University of Manchester) is acting in an advisory role for the project. More details about each researcher can be found below.
Dr Martin Scott is a Senior Lecturer in Media and International Development at the University of East Anglia (Norwich, UK). He has produced a number of reports and guidelines for UNESCO, DFID and the International Broadcasting Trust (IBT) – targeted at broadcasters and NGOs – concerning the production, content and effects of representations of international development. His academic research has been focussed largely on how audiences respond to news coverage of international development – with particular concern for online behaviours, reactions to celebrities and to television documentaries. He has also published a book on Media and Development (Zed Books, 2014).
Dr Kate Wright is a former BBC broadcast journalist who is now a Chancellor’s Fellow in the Creative and Cultural Industries at Edinburgh University in Scotland. She has a track record of working on flagship news programmes (Radio 4 Today, World Tonight, BBC World Service Newshour). Her journalistic work has won a number of international awards, including one from the Foreign Press Association. She researches international news production, especially in online outlets. Her doctoral thesis, which was conducted at Goldsmiths (University of London), was about journalists’ use of NGO-provided multimedia. This involved interviewing journalists and NGO-workers in the US and UK, as well as media producers in Mali, South Sudan, Chad, Kenya and the DRC. She’s currently involved in developing guidelines on best media practice with INGOs and the UNDP.
Dr Mel Bunce is a former newspaper journalist from New Zealand and Senior Lecturer in Journalism at City University. She has published extensively on the work of African stringers and international news coverage of crises in the continent. Mel has spent seven years researching foreign correspondents in Africa, which has included fieldwork with journalists in Sudan, Uganda, Kenya, Senegal and Nigeria, as well as the ethnographic study of digital communication and instant messaging in journalistic practice. This work formed the basis of her doctorate at Oxford University, and is included in a book she is currently editing on Africa’s Media Image. She is currently conducting a British Academy-funded content analysis on the changing nature of the international newswire coverage of Africa.
Dan Brockington is Director of the Sheffield Institute for International Development and was previously Professor of Conservation and Development at the University of Manchester. He is the author of Fortress Conservation (2002), Nature Unbound (With Rosaleen Duffy and Jim Igoe, 2008), Celebrity and the Environment (2009) and – most recently – Celebrity Advocacy and International Development (2014). Most of Dan’s research has been in Tanzania, where he has worked on livelihood change, natural resource governance, microfinance and institutional performance, however he has also worked in South Africa, Australia, New Zealand and India. His broader interests include work on global overviews of the social impacts of protected areas, media and conservation and continental-wide examinations of the work of conservation NGOs in sub-Saharan Africa. Most recently he has worked on celebrity and development, based largely on work in the UK.