Producing UK children’s public service broadcasting in the 21st century: a case study of BBC Scotland

Whitaker, Lynn (2011) Producing UK children’s public service broadcasting in the 21st century: a case study of BBC Scotland. PhD thesis, University of Glasgow.

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This thesis examines the production of UK children’s public service broadcasting in the 21st century through extended case study of one significant production facility: BBC Scotland Children’s Department. Starting from the hypothesis that the Department offers a unique inflection of its public service remit through being an alternative producer to the main BBC Children’s production facility in London, it argues that the various contexts and settings of the Department impact on its texts, practices and discourses to articulate a distinctive approach to children’s public service broadcasting befitting the Department’s status as a BBC ‘centre of excellence’.
Based on production research at BBC Scotland from 2007 to 2011, the study explores a number of problematic concepts associated with contemporary UK public service broadcasting for children, including the perceived value of UK-originated content; the occupational values of producers as specialists; the construction and representation of the children’s audience; and the specificity of television form in achieving public service for children. These issues are given additional scrutiny with respect to how BBC Scotland Children’s Department negotiates the demands of producing content that is simultaneously national and network, and in light of the difficulties in UK children’s broadcasting as a whole, suggested by the 2007 Ofcom Report on The Future of Children’s Television Programming.
Occurring at a critical juncture in the history both of the BBC and of public service broadcasting more generally, the study reveals how the theorised gap between audience and producer, so critical in children’s media, is managed by the Department, and how notions of ‘public service’ to children are articulated in institutional ethos and practice as well as in texts and artefacts. Through analysis of different aspects of the children’s television production process at BBC Scotland, the thesis concludes that the Department embodies and manifests a strong ethos of public service in all its work.

Item Type: Thesis (PhD)
Qualification Level: Doctoral
Keywords: children's television, public service broadcasting, production study, BBC Scotland, television production, children's media, BBC television, children, television, production, PSB
Subjects: P Language and Literature > PN Literature (General) > PN1990 Broadcasting
Colleges/Schools: College of Arts & Humanities > School of Culture and Creative Arts > Theatre Film and TV Studies
Supervisor's Name: Geraghty, Prof. Christine and Lury, Prof. Karen
Date of Award: 2011
Depositing User: Dr Lynn Marie Whitaker
Unique ID: glathesis:2011-3012
Copyright: Copyright of this thesis is held by the author.
Date Deposited: 20 Dec 2011
Last Modified: 10 Dec 2012 14:02

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