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24 September 2014
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Gwyneth Williams

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Gwyneth Williams appointed Director of English Networks & News for BBC World Service

Gwyneth Williams has been appointed Director of BBC World Service's English Networks and News.


She will be responsible for all the BBC's international radio programmes in English and for the nine streams that deliver that output to its 42 million listeners around the globe.


She is currently Head of Radio Current Affairs and Editor of the BBC Reith Lectures.


She has worked closely with Reith Lecturers such as Daniel Barenboim last year and the well-known development economist, Jeff Sachs, whose series, Bursting At The Seams, is currently being broadcast.


Her department produces many familiar flagship BBC Radio programmes such as File On 4, Analysis, From Our Own Correspondent, Crossing Continents, Five Live Report, Moneybox and In Business.


Gwyneth herself edits a number of special programmes and series for BBC Radio 4 and BBC World Service.


She will join in June, taking over from Phil Harding who is retiring from the BBC after 38 years with the corporation.


BBC World Service Director Nigel Chapman said: "Gwyneth brings a wealth of experience in radio journalism to this very important global role.


"She has the energy and credibility to head up our English language proposition, ensuring it makes maximum possible impact across all available platforms with original, creative programmes and news services always underpinned by the BBC's core values of independence, trust and creativity.


"A distinguished programme maker in her own right, she is well placed to understand and meet the challenges of a highly competitive media world."


Gwyneth Williams said: "I am delighted and honoured to take up this challenging job at the World Service. My early years here were formative, and I have since always stood for quality journalism.


"Globalisation presents us with a huge challenge which I am confident my colleagues will rise to meet.


"At a time when much broadcast journalism around the world is dumbing down, the World Service stands as a beacon of how things should be done. I am proud once more to be part of this team."


Gwyneth Williams started her career in Bush House as a trainee talks writer in 1976, rapidly moving on to become producer and duty editor of The World Tonight.


Later, as Deputy Editor, Special Current Affairs Programmes, she was responsible for a range of coverage including elections.


As Editor, Policy and Social Programmes from 1994 to 1996 she oversaw the launch of current affairs programmes on BBC Radio Five Live, edited Radio 4's The Week In Westminster and worked briefly for BBC One's On The Record.


She has also been Editor, Foreign Affairs Radio and the bi-media Editor, Home Current Affairs.


At the beginning of her career, Gwyneth worked as a research assistant at the Overseas Development Institute for a brief period and has published two books, one on Southern Africa with Brian Hackland and one on Third World political organisations.


She took five years out of formal employment to be with her children in the Eighties.


She grew up in South Africa and was educated at St Hugh's College, Oxford.


BBC World Service Press Office




Category: World Service
Date: 10.05.2007
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