Radio 4: Today announces this year's guest editors
BBC Radio 4's Today announces this year's guest editors who will take over the programme between Christmas and the New Year.
- Dame Stella Rimington – former Director-General of MI5;
- Damon Albarn – from the bands The Good, The Bad And The Queen, Gorillaz and Blur;
- Professor Peter Hennessy – historian and author of The Secret State;
- Sir Martin Evans – winner of the 2007 Nobel Prize in medicine for his work in stem cell research.
Dame Stella Rimington said: "I couldn't resist the opportunity to take the agenda out of the hands of those who usually set it – namely the politicians – and instead have some of the issues that I think are important aired and debated."
Among many other ideas:
Damon Albarn finds lessons for Britain in Mali's approach to recycling; Professor Hennessy will track the evolution of political satire; Sir Martin Evans will investigate the consequences of Chernobyl; and Dame Stella Rimington will report on declining trust in politics.
Today Editor, Ceri Thomas said: "Guest editors never fail to surprise us with the breadth of their interests and the quality of their ideas and we've got a fantastic line-up this year."
Like last year, one edition of the programme will be edited by a group chosen from the audience. Today listeners were invited to form teams and apply and the successful entrants are a group from Dyfed Powys Police.
Guest editors are responsible for between a third and a half of their programme's output.
However Today's duty editors, producers and reporters are on hand to help to turn their ideas into high-quality radio journalism and make sure that material chosen is newsworthy and meets the BBC's Editorial Guidelines.
Previous Today programme guest editors include Bono, Professor Stephen Hawking, Anthony Minghella, Yoko Ono and the Archbishop of Canterbury, Dr Rowan Williams.
Notes to Editors
Today is Radio 4's flagship news and current affairs programme – over the last 12 months it has reached an average of just over six million listeners every week.
Today recently celebrated 50 years on air, on 28 October 2007.
At this year's Sony Awards Today won several awards including Gold in the Breakfast Show category and a Gold for presenter John Humphrys in the News Journalist of the Year category.
Presented by five of the most respected journalists in broadcasting – John Humphrys, James Naughtie, Sarah Montague, Edward Stourton and Carolyn Quinn – it is generally considered to be one of the most influential news programmes in Britain.
BBC Economics Editor Evan Davis joins the programme as a presenter, for 12 months, in Spring 2008 when Carolyn Quinn leaves to concentrate on her other BBC work including Radio 4's The Westminster Hour.