Programme Researcher

    155

    Programme researchers organize, plan and coordinate the production of television and radio programmes, and undertake relevant background research.

    The researcher has a responsibility for fact checking, writing briefs for presenters, and ensuring that the production adheres to appropriate legislation.

    You can work on a variety of programmes or within one subject area.

    The role may also be known as:

    • specialist or live-footage or picture researcher;
    • broadcast assistant;
    • assistant producer.

     

    Duties

    • meeting with producers, directors, designers, presenters and writers to discuss the research needs of a programme;
    • generating and developing new programme ideas;
    • conveying findings accurately to others in report form and ‘briefs’;
    • sourcing and researching facts, figures and information using the internet, film and tape archives, specialist collections, picture libraries, museums and government departments;
    • assessing contributors’ suitability for the programme, researching and booking appropriate people and locations;
    • booking resources and facilities;
    • recruiting freelance staff and negotiating fees;
    • providing administrative support such as typing, answering the phone and dealing with contracts;
    • briefing scriptwriters and presenters on topics, updating scripts and editing news reports;
    • sourcing copyright for literary and music sources and gaining clearance for any materials used;
    • negotiating broadcasting rights and producing information and fact sheets for websites;
    • providing research to production staff in a clear, concise format and tracking down film, archive and video tapes;
    • finding interviewees to conduct initial interviews with and getting vox-pop responses to current events from members of the public;
    • directing a small shoot and carrying out straightforward editing.

     

    Qualifications

    This area of work is open to all graduates, as work experience and contacts often count for more than your degree subject. Nevertheless, a degree in one of the following subjects may increase your chances:

    • architecture;
    • art;
    • broadcasting and media;
    • design;
    • English;
    • history;
    • journalism;
    • politics;
    • public relations;
    • theatre.

    Graduates are preferred but relevant work experience, personal qualities, confidence and evidence of skills may compensate.

     

    Skills

    • Enthusiasm
    • Determination
    • Perseverance
    • Excellent verbal and written skills
    • Adaptability
    • Able to work well under pressure
    • Organizational skills
    • Administrative skills
    • IT skills

    Comments