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Emeritus Professor Liz Jacka


Liz Jacka researches in the areas of broadcasting history and policy. She is presently engaged in two major research projects: the past, present and future of Public Service Broadcasting and the history of Australian television. She has also recently completed projects on the Australian media and the Gulf War and on arts programming on the ABC. She is currently supervising a number of higher degree students who are working on various topics, including the history of Australian cultural organisations, film and classification, media coverage of Islamic issues, aspects of Australian television history and an analysis of the Australian film industry in the global environment.
HSS Profile


CURRENT RESEARCH ACTIVITIES: A cultural history of Australian television
This is a cultural history of Australian television beginning just before the first television broadcast in 1956 and ending in 1992 as mult-channel broadcasting emerged. It will concentrate mainly on commercial television but within a broader media environment. Television contributes to a sense of ourselves as part of a nation, helps to situate us within a globalised world, gives us images by which we interpret the unfamiliar, is an ingredient in democratic discourse and fosters creative expression. Using these terms, the study will attempt to understand the cultural significance of the 'goldeb age' of free to air television in Australia.

The New Services Industry Model: Implications for audio-visual media

This project examines important directions in the understanding of audi-visual media. It seeks to apply a 'services industries' model of policy and regulation to four key problems: the conversion to digital transmission platforms, public broadcasting and its future role, international policy dynamics and the re-evaluation of long-standing domestic social and cultural policy objectives. Liz Jacka is responsible for the module on public service broadcasting. Fellow researchers are Professors Tom O'Regan and Stuart Cunningham and Dr Julian Thomas. This project has been funded by a three year ARC Discovery Grant 2003-5.

ABC Online as a media website
Public service broadcasting is under threat in the digital environment. Like other media organisations the ABC has established an Internet site which aims to provide audiences with new types of information and entertainment, packaged in new ways and involving various levels of interactivity. This study is a comparative examination of a number of media Internet sites in order to discover whether and how they are creating new content, new forms of interactivity and new audiences. This will provide a perspective from which to judge the future relevance of the ABC in a multi-channel environment.

Emeritus Professor, ADMIN Faculty Administration
Associate Member, TFC - Transforming Cultures
Associate Member, CCS - Cosmopolitan Civil Societies
BSc (Auck), BA (Auck), PhD (Syd)

Research Interests

Broadcasting and communications policy
Australian Film and Television: history, industry and policy
Television studies
Globalisation of media and culture
Communications history

Media Studies


Jacka, L. & Dermody, S.J. 1998, The Imaginary Industry: Australian Film in the Late Eighties, Media Information Australia with the Australian Film Television and Radio School, North Ryde.
200 pp
Jacka, L. 1991, The ABC of Drama: 1975-1989, The Australian Film Television and Radio School, North Ryde.
147 pp
Jacka, L. & Dermody, S.J. 1988, The Screening of Australia Vol II: Anatomy of a Cultural Project, Currency Press, Sydney.
282 pp
Jacka, L. & Dermody, S.J. 1987, The Screening of Australia Vol I: Anatomy of a Film Industry, Currency Press, Sydney.
282 pp


Jacka, L. 2006, 'Australia: The ABC and Public Value - Public Service Broadcaster in the Age of Competition' in Banerjee, I. & Seneviratne, K. (eds), Public Service Broadcasting in the Age of Globalization, Asian Media Information and Communication Centre & SCI, Nanyang Technological University, Singapore, pp. 165-186.
Jakubowicz, A.H. & Jacka, L. 2005, 'The Invisible Ally: Marketing Australia's War in Iraq' in Artz, L. & Kamalipour, Y. (eds), Bring 'Em On - Media and Politics in the Iraq War, Rowan & Littlefield Publishers Inc, Lanham Maryland USA, pp. 101-120.
View/Download from: UTS OPUS
Jacka, L. 2003, 'Public Service TV: an Endangered Species' in Toby Miller (ed), Television: Critical Concepts in Media and Cultural Studies, Routledge, London, UK, pp. 249-267.
reprint of Public Service TV: An Endangered Species", in Stuart Cunningham and Graeme Turner (eds) The Australian Television Book, St Leonards: Allen and Unwin, 2000, pp. 52-68,
Jacka, L. 2001, 'The future of public service broadcasting' in Cunningham, S. & Turner, G. (eds), The Media and Communications In Australia, Allen and Unwin, St Leonards, Australia, pp. 300-343.
Jacka, L. 2000, 'Public Service TV: an Endangered Species' in Cunningham, S. & Turner, G. (eds), Australian TV Book, Allen & Unwin, Sydney Australia, pp. 52-68.
Jacka, L. 1998, 'Global/Regional Dynamics' in Daya Thussu (ed), Electronic Empires: Global Media and Local Resistance, Arnold, London.
Jacka, L. 1997, 'Australia' in Hill, J. & Gibson, P.C. (eds), Oxford Guide to Film Studies, Oxford University Press, Oxford.
Jacka, L. 1997, 'Neighbourly relations? Cross-cultural reception analysis and Australian soaps in Britain'' in Sreberny-Mohammadi, A., Winseck, D., McKenna, J. & Boyd-Barrett2, O. (eds), Media in Global Context: a Reader, Arnold, London, UK, pp. 299-310.

Journal articles

Jacka, L. 2006, 'The ABC and the 2006 federal media reforms', Media International Australia, vol. 0, no. 120, pp. 5-9.
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Jacka, L. 2005, 'The elephant trap: Bias, balance and government - ABC relations during the second Gulf War', Southern Review, vol. 37, no. 3, pp. 8-28.
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Jacka, L. 2005, 'Uncertain Visions: Birt, Dyke and the Reinvention of the BBC - Georgina Born', Contiuum: Journal of Media and Culture Studies, vol. 19, no. 3, pp. 435-438.
Jacka, L. 2004, 'Doing the history of television in Australia: Problems and Challenges', Continuum: Journal of Media & Cultural Studies, vol. 18, no. 1, pp. 27-42.
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Jacka, L. & Wilson, H.J. 2004, 'American Empire: Media and international security', Media International Australia, vol. Npv 2004, no. 113, pp. 5-9.
Jacka, L. 2003, '"Democracy as Defeat": The Impotence of Arguments for Public Service Broadcasting', Television & New Media, vol. 4, no. 2, pp. 177-191.
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Jacka, L. 2002, 'Digital Space, Public Places', Southern Review, vol. 35, no. 1, pp. 1-8.
Jacka, L. 2000, 'Review of 'An Introductory History of British Broadcasting'', Media International Australia incorporating Culture & Policy, vol. 0, no. 96, pp. 183-184.