ABC operations

What? You’re against the national broadcaster telecasting the NAIDOC Awards Ceremony? Why?

ABC Five-Year Plan 2023-2028: An essential part of daily life for all Australians

Today ABC Managing Director David Anderson released the ABC’s new Five-Year Plan.

The central purpose of the Five-Year Plan is to ensure the ABC remains relevant, delivers value for Australians, and continues to be the most trusted media organisation in the country.

It sets out the priorities for the ABC over the next five years to deliver this outcome and ensure that the ABC continues to have an essential role in Australian life.

The core mission of the ABC is enduring. The ABC will always be the home of trusted and independent news and information, telling distinctive Australian stories, entertaining the nation across all ages and celebrating Australian culture.

However, as technology, audience behaviour and demographic changes transform the media market and society, the ABC must also adapt and evolve.

Over the next five years, the ABC will undergo a significant transition from maintaining both traditional broadcast and digital processes towards becoming an integrated digital operation. While broadcast will remain important, this Five-Year Plan is a first step to build an ABC that is prepared for a digital-majority audience.

The ABC will enhance its primary digital products, ABC News, ABC iview and ABC listen, to provide a seamless, personalised service that enables audiences to more easily discover content that is relevant to them.

The plan sets out a vision for the ABC to be an essential part of everyday life for all Australians through news and entertainment that appeals to different ages and interests. It is a strategy that prioritises strengthening the trust of our audiences and commits the ABC to being more local.

The Plan also reaffirms the ABC’s commitment to a culture of inclusion and diversity, and the imperative to better reflect contemporary Australia.

Mr Anderson said the next stage of the strategy means the ABC will meet changing audience needs while maintaining the commitment to quality, relevance, independence and its role as Australia’s most trusted media organisation.

“By 2028, the ABC will serve more Australians on the platform of their choice with made-for-digital content and journalism on ABC News, ABC iview, ABC listen and on major third-party platforms.”

“Australians trust and value the ABC and this will not change. As we move through this period of digital evolution, Australians can continue to rely on us for the content and services that inform, educate and entertain.

“Our audiences can be assured we will safeguard traditional broadcast services as long as these remain essential for keeping Australians informed and entertained.

“As Australia changes, so must the ABC.

“This means changing to meet the needs of our audiences wherever they live. We will continue to serve all Australians, contribute to our national identity and remain an essential part of daily life.”

The ABC Five-Year Plan 2023-2028 can be accessed here.

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it’s a wise move to start looking at rationalising some of the AM services, given some of the ultra niche content and miniscule audiences particularly across parts of RN and News Radio. There’d be a lot of cost savings to government by shutting some off.

Looks like no changes to TV broadcasts, though maybe some re-allocation of digital spectrum use, which might mean some changes between individual channels.

Where ABC Budget should be directed on programming as per 5 year plan;

RADIO: Increasing Capital City local programming and ABC Radio Extra station as per ABC Local Radio thread.

TELEVISION: Reducing to 2 High Definition Channels ABC TV and ABC TV Extra.

DIGITAL and ONLINE: Streamlined into current offerings including ABC News, ABC iview, and ABC Listen Apps.
ABC Music Network 6 Stations, ABC Double J, ABC Country, ABC Classic, ABC Jazz, ABC Kids and ABC Music Extra, on DAB+ and Online stations.
Axe Triple J, Triple J Unearthed and Classic 2.
ABC Sport on DAB+ and Online, Statewide Saturday Sport 11AM till 12:30PM. 7 Programs except WA.
Pop up Digital and Online Stations when applicable i.e Anzac Day, NAIDOC Week, Sport etc.

NEWS: Axe RN Breakfast, RN Drive, Drum, Q&A and Offsiders.
Increasing State and Territory based radio news bulletins.
Increasing State and Territory politics reporting (Chief Political Reporter and 2 Political Reporters).
Increasing Regional radio programming.
Increasing National reporting.
Increasing Specialist reporting.
Increasing Investigation reporting.
Day time Newsradio programming into merged RN station called ABC National.
Day time News 24 programming into existing TV channels.

Why should they have only two HD channels as the rest of the networks increase?

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ABC announces next steps in digital transition

The ABC has announced a range of savings measures and reinvestment initiatives designed to address rising costs and support its transition to a digital-first media organisation.

This follows the release last week of the ABC Five-Year Plan 2023-2028 which sets out how the ABC will respond to rapid changes in technology, audience behaviour and society to continue to deliver value for all Australians and remain the most trusted media organisation in the country.

ABC Managing Director David Anderson said the recent content team reorganisation and the release of the new strategy required carefully made decisions on reinvestment and savings to strengthen the ABC into the future.

“Along with media organisations here and overseas, the ABC is operating in an environment that is subject to inflationary pressures,” Mr Anderson said. “We also need to increase investment in digital transformation to improve our efficiency and meet the needs of audiences.

“We have made clear our vision for the ABC to be an essential part of everyday life for all Australians through our high-quality journalism and content, wherever they may live across the country.

“The continued migration of audiences from broadcast services to digital provides an opportunity to ensure the ABC is a trusted, central part of daily media consumption for more Australians.

“By 2028 the majority of audience engagement will be on the ABC’s digital platforms and we will have a digital-first approach to commissioning, producing, and distributing content. We will enhance our primary digital products, ABC iview, ABC listen and ABC News, to provide personalised services that enable audiences to more easily discover the journalism and content that is relevant to them.

“To make the most of that opportunity, we must better align our resources and invest in the new skills we need in our workforce we can’t create through retraining.

“Achieving these outcomes requires some difficult decisions. While we have targets for savings in support areas, including travel and consulting costs, unfortunately there is an unavoidable impact on some roles.

“These changes are important to secure the long-term success of the organisation, but we acknowledge it is never easy, particularly for individuals who are directly impacted by these proposals.”

Mr Anderson said the proposed changes announced today included the creation of new roles to grow the ABC’s digital capability. It is anticipated up to 120 employees will potentially leave the ABC.

The proposed changes include:

  • The launch of the Current Affairs Digital Transformation Project to ensure some of the ABC’s best investigative programs have the capability to meet audience demand for long-form on-demand video and in-depth digital content.
  • Continuing the shift in the News Operations team from linear television programming to on-demand digital content and modernising the ABC’s skills base.
  • The introduction of ABC News Sunday, a new national bulletin bringing the best stories and journalism from around Australia and the world.
  • The return of a digital-first Stateline, unpacking the local stories that matter through long form journalism, in-depth interviews and explainers for on-demand and broadcast audiences.
  • The establishment of a dedicated Climate, Environment and Energy reporting team to focus on the issues that are consistently rated as critical for the nation’s future, particularly by younger Australians.
  • Streamlining our commissioning editor structure by reducing the number of ABC executives involved in the commissioning and production process with the independent sector, freeing up funds for investment in high-quality distinctive Australian content.
  • A digital-first approach to commissioning and choosing content, with a focus on the audience from the earliest development stage.
  • Enhancing the ABC iview, ABC News and ABC listen audience experience to drive faster uptake to these platforms.
  • Promoting our digital output with new roles established in our digital teams.

“I want to recognise the contribution everyone at the ABC has made in recent years,” Mr Anderson said

“The ABC has evolved and adapted for over 90 years to ensure it remains Australia’s most trusted media organisation, valued by audiences everywhere, and value for money for the essential services it delivers.

“Increasingly, Australians are primarily using digital media services, and the ABC’s ongoing value and relevance will depend on our ability to change with the audience.

“In an era of rapid technological change, today’s announcements will ensure we continue to remain trusted, relevant and valued by all Australians into the future.”

  • New Head of Scripted to lead commissions across Comedy and Drama
  • New Head of Factual to be announced
  • New Arts, Music and Events dept
  • Genre priorities: Indigenous, Arts, Children’s, Scripted, Entertainment and Factual

ABC statement on arts coverage

Changes announced by the ABC about savings and reinvestment will in no way diminish the ABC’s ability to meet its Charter responsibilities to arts coverage.

No other Australian broadcaster comes anywhere near offering the depth and breadth of arts coverage that ABC does. The proposals announced yesterday will see savings reinvested into the ABC’s arts coverage which will lead to more of the arts content audiences want and expect.

Our commitment to the arts remains as solid and comprehensive as ever, with our excellent screen arts team moving into a new screen Arts, Music and Events department and our arts digital roles coming together within the newly formed Digital and Innovation team. Reports to the contrary are not accurate.

Australians turn to us to keep them informed and up to date on all the art news and events. There is an extensive range of art-related content on ABC TV and ABC iview – which includes the Art & Culture collection – as well as on our ABC Arts YouTube channel and the ABC Arts Instagram account. The latest art updates can be found on the ABC News Arts & Culture site and there is also daily arts offerings on ABC RN and on the ABC listen app as well as coverage of local arts on ABC Local Radio across Australia. ABC Classic, triple j and our specialist digital music channels – ABC Jazz, ABC Country, and Double J round off our offerings.

ABC is the only broadcaster with a weekly arts magazine show – Artworks . Radio National has numerous weekly arts shows including The Art Show, The Book Show, the Bookshelf, The Screen Show, The Stage Show, Blueprint for Living, Awaye!, Stop Everything and The Music Show. The network’s annual on-air writer’s festival, Big Weekend of Books is back tomorrow and Sunday, covering conversations with Australian writers. We are regularly commissioning documentaries and series such as Firestarter: The story of Bangarra, Finding the Archibald and Great Southern Landscapes with Rachel Griffiths.


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Honestly what pissess me off about this is that the Perth bulletin is being replaced with a National one (I read it was for Sunday) they only just canabalizing their audiences to move to Seven or nine.

Was this a decision all states bulletins or just Perth , I only read that but abs my blood boiled.

We definetly neeed ABC News at state and regional areas to counter the wide spread of fake news coming out of Sky News and to give people a chance .

I can’t help feel this particular loss will hurt them more . What does everyone think, maybe I am over reacting? What does everyone think

All state Sunday local bulletins are going and being replaced with a national bulletin.

I think the best solution will be to have a separate edition of national bulletin for WA on Sundays, similar to ABC Late News on weeknights.

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I often wonder if the ABC/SBS would be better managed if they operated under a model similar to PBS/NPR in the US. Creating two specialized corporations would save money and a co-funding model whereby each ABC/SBS TV and Radio license effectively becomes a joint venture between the government and community group(s) would mean a greater focus on local content and provide opportunities for regional and remote areas to have truly localized news services across TV and Radio.

Educators around Australia have access to the official educational resources for this year’s NAIDOC Week theme: ‘For Our Elders’ on the ABC Education website. NAIDOC Week 2023: For Our Elders - ABC Education

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ABC Diversity, Inclusion & Belonging Plan 2023-26

The ABC has launched the new Diversity, Inclusion & Belonging Plan 2023-26, the framework that will both support and build on the strong workplace culture of inclusion and diversity at the ABC.

With the broader ABC strategies, including the ABC’s Five-Year Plan 2023-2028, Reconciliation Action Plan, and key content and divisional plans, the new Diversity, Inclusion & Belonging Plan 2023-26 demonstrates a commitment to strengthen and reflect Australia’s diversity through the ABC’s workforce and content.

ABC Managing Director David Anderson said, “The ABC has told and shared the stories of Australians for more than 90 years and we are committed to reflecting the rich diversity of the nation.

“This plan builds on the strong foundation for diversity we’ve already created and adopts ‘inclusion in practice’ as a fundamental principle.

“The ABC is committed to fostering a culture that values the experiences and knowledge of all employees, and creating a respectful environment where everyone is welcomed.”

Mr Anderson said an inclusive environment allowed diversity to thrive and inspired greater creativity in everything the ABC did.

The ABC’s Diversity, Inclusion and Belonging Plan focuses on five key pillars, including inclusion in practice; a diverse workforce; inclusive content, products and services; connection with Indigenous and diverse communities; and accountability and transparency.

These pillars will support the ABC to continue to meet the obligations of its Charter and to foster a sense of national identity inclusive of the community we serve.

The ABC Diversity, Inclusion & Belonging Plan 2023-2026 can be accessed here.

Rachel Okine joins the ABC as Head of Scripted and Susie Jones as Head of Factual


The ABC is delighted to announce two major executive appointments in the new Content division, with Rachel Okine from Stan joining the ABC as Head of Scripted and former Netflix executive Susie Jones taking up the role as Head of Factual.

The pair bring a wealth of experience in understanding what content to commission for streamers that will help drive the Content division’s focus around on demand content and reinforce the ABC’s standing as a premier destination for world-class content.

“To be able to welcome creative executives of the calibre of Rachel and Susie to the ABC is incredibly humbling,’’ said ABC Chief Content Officer Chris Oliver-Taylor. “They’re both exceptional leaders and bring direct experience of commissioning programs at two of the best streamers in the world, Netflix and Stan. The ABC will significantly benefit from their experience and knowledge.”

As the ABC’s Head of Scripted, Okine will oversee the biggest Scripted slate in Australia.

“It is an honour to have the opportunity to build upon the ABC’s legacy of delivering excellent storytelling to audiences here and abroad, as we steer a course through the next stage of its digital evolution,” Okine said. “Under the leadership of Chris Oliver-Taylor and Jennifer Collins, it’s promising to be a very exciting time of transformative change.”

Okine moves across from Stan, where she was the Senior Commissioning Editor overseeing a slate of scripted drama and comedy, feature films and feature documentaries. She will oversee all ABC drama and comedy in the newly-created role of Head of Scripted, starting 4 September.

Chris Oliver-Taylor said: “Rachel brings local and international experience across distribution and streaming to the ABC, where she will lead a supremely talented team of commissioning editors. She will be a brilliant addition to our team and will build on the incredible legacy that is the ABC’s Scripted output.”

As the new Head of Factual, Susie Jones, will manage the largest output of factual and documentary content in Australia, from science to religion, true crime to investigative journalism, natural history to travel, as well as the internal success stories of Landline, Gardening Australia, Compass, Back Roads and the ABC’s biggest show of 2022, Muster Dogs.

“I’m thrilled to be joining the ABC as Head of Factual,” Jones said. “The ABC so often captures the national conversation and building on that brilliant pedigree I look forward to working closely with the team to bring fresh, thought-provoking new shows to all Australians.”

Jones starts her new role as the ABC’s Head of Factual on 24 July.

Chris Oliver-Taylor said: “This is the third time that I have worked with Susie. Susie was the first person I hired at Matchbox Pictures, and I worked very closely with her most recently at Netflix. I cannot wait to see what impact Susie will have on such a vital part of the ABC’s output.”

Okine and Jones will report to Head of Screen Content Jennifer Collins.


Rachel Okine joined Stan in 2021 and is the Senior Commissioning Editor, overseeing a slate of scripted drama and comedy, feature films and feature documentaries. After starting her career in acquisitions at FilmFour, Okine was the first employee of Hopscotch, later becoming the Acquisitions Executive for eOne ANZ and Head of Development for Hopscotch Features. Okine moved back to Europe in 2015 to become Paris-based VP of International Production and Acquisitions for Studiocanal and was subsequently appointed VP of International Acquisitions for STX. Returning to Australia in 2020, Okine was appointed Managing Director of Academy Award-nominated production company Aquarius Films to strategically lead its film and TV operations.


Most recently Susie Jones spent a year and a half as Slate Manger & Creative Executive at Netflix ANZ. She began her career in the BBC Comedy department in London before returning to Australia, where she spent more than 15 years as a freelance creative producer and director for a range of content across the ABC, SBS, the Ten, Nine and Seven Networks and the Discovery Channel. Jones spent six years working at Matchbox Pictures as a Development Executive, developing content for all networks. In 2016 she joined SBS as commissioning editor for documentaries where she was responsible for a slate of award- winning content, including multiple seasons of Who Do You Think You Are?, The Ghan, Addicted Australia and See What You Made Me Do. Jones was also previously SBS’s Head of Entertainment and Food.