Professor John Hill

Personal profile

John Hill joined Royal Holloway in 2004 from the University of Ulster where he was Professor of Media Studies and Head of the School of Media and Performing Arts. His PhD is from the University of York and his MA from the University of Glasgow. From 2004 to 2014, he was Head of Research in the Department of Media Arts. During this time he was responsible for the submissions to RAE 2008 and REF 2014 in which the department was placed in the top ten departments for media and communication research in the UK. He is currently Co-Director of Research in the School of Performing and Digital Arts and Co-Director of the Centre for the History of Television Culture and Production:

Hill’s research and writing has focused on a variety of areas including film and television history, national and regional cinemas, the film industry, film policy and the politics of film and television. Hill is the author of Sex, Class and Realism: British Cinema 1956-63 (1986), British Cinema in the 1980s (1999), Cinema and Northern Ireland: Film, Culture and Politics (2006) and Ken Loach: The Politics of Film and Television (2011) as well as the co-author of  Cinema and Ireland (1987). He is also the editor or co-editor of various collections including Border Crossing: Film in Ireland, Britain and Europe (1994), Big Picture, Small Screen: the Relations Between Film and Television (1996), The Oxford Guide to Film Studies (1998), the Companion to British and Irish Cinema (2019) and three special issues of the Journal of British Cinema and Television - on Film in Britain in the New Millennium (2012), Radical Television Drama (2013) and Ken Russell (2015) - a special issue of the Journal of International Cultural Policy on Film Policy in a Globalised Cultural Cultural Economy (2016) and a special issue of the Historical Journal of Film, Radio and Television (2017) on Forgotten Television Drama.

He led the AHRC-funded research project on The History of Forgotten Television Drama in the UK which continues to maintain a blog:  Previously he was engaged in successful bids for the establishment and funding of the AHRB Centre for British Film and Television Studies, the Irish Postgraduate Film Seminar and the Centre for Media Research at the University of Ulster (for which he was awarded over £3 million).

John has also been involved in a range of other professional activities including:

  • Founding member of the Board of Directors, UK Film Council
  • Chair, Northern Ireland Film Council
  • Member of the Board of Governors, British Film Institute
  • Member of the the first Communications, Cultural and Media Studies panel for the HEFCE Research Assessment Exercise (RAE)
  • Chair, Working Group on the Film Industry in Europe, European Institute for the Media
  • Founding chair of the Foyle Film Festival
  • Member of the Royal Television Society Archive Advisory Group
  • Member of the Northern Ireland Film Heritage and Archive Working Group
  • Member of the Editorial Board of the Journal of British Cinema and Television and the Editorial Advisory Board of Cineaste.

Hill is also an experienced PhD supervisor who has supervised nineteen students to the successful completion of PhDs on a range of topics including broadcasting and the 'troubles', the cinema and Ireland, Irish popular music, the films of Adrian Brunel, Derek Jarman and Chris Marker, the British coming-of-age film, the digital distribution of documentary, low-budget UK film production, the sports film, screenwriting and diversity and the politics of Turkish cinema. In terms of teaching, Hill has been responsible for a range of courses on film and television history, film and televison analysis and criticism, British and European cinema, the film industry, film policy and Hollywood.

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