Dr Bill Dodd is a lecturer and researcher in The Media School. His forthcoming book, Solutions Journalism: News at the Intersection of Hope, Leadership and Expertise, considers how solutions to community challenges are constructed at the interdisciplinary intersection of journalism, science, politics, business and activism. This research explores how news values and practices shape whose voices are heard in future-focused discourses. In so doing, he considers how emerging solutions and constructive journalism practices might distribute realistic optimism more equitably through communities, re-engaging diverse publics in the political process.
Bill is also a freelance journalist and, previously, a political communications and campaign consultant. His writing has appeared in Agency France-Presse, Al Jazeera, The Japan Times, The Mercury and Forty South. In 2018 he was invited to judge Island Magazine’s essay prize.
Title of Thesis
Framing the Future: Propositional Journalism and the Construction of Leadership in ‘New Tasmania’
University of Tasmania
Natural, (un)Natural, National: The Australians’ reporting of Climate Change and Extreme Weather
University of Tasmania
Framing the future: Propositional journalism and the construction of leadership in ‘New Tasmania’
Journalism often anticipates and constructs the future in the present by reporting leaders and propositions via professional practices of newsworthiness, source selection and framing. This category of reporting, that I term ‘propositional journalism’, plays a vital role in democratic societies by providing the public with a range of options and alternatives to consider. However, reporting propositions implicates journalists in political questions of power, legitimacy and leadership evaluation. Dodd’s research provides a case study analysis of propositional journalism in Tasmania where propositions (dams and pulp mills especially) have fixated political discourse and provoked bitter controversy. It seeks to identify whose voices were most prominent in pitching and commenting on propositions and how this type of reporting was framed. Over a six-month sample comprising 1,172 proposition-centred articles from three local news outlets—The Mercury, The Examiner and ABC Tasmania—the research found 71% of news sources were politicians and business leaders and that they were overwhelmingly male. These dominant sources, Dodd argues, were legitimised by routine framings of leadership that evaluate leadership, metaphorically, as akin to navigation, construction, gambling, child nurturing and marketing.
Member of the International Communication Association.
Solutions journalism, constructive journalism, environmental communication, public engagement, science communication, political communication, media sociology, frame analysis, field analysis.
Introduction to Sustainability Literacy (KAA106) https://www.utas.edu.au/courses/cale/units/kaa106-introduction-to-sustainability-literacy
Media Writing (HEJ504) https://www.utas.edu.au/courses/cale/units/hej504-media-writing
In examining solutions journalism, constructive journalism and public engagement with science, Dr Dodd’s research has examined power in the context of interdisciplinarity. His research has explored these complex relationships—vital in the mediation of the future—sociologically through interviews, ethnography and text analysis.
Dr Bill Dodd’s research examines how perceived solutions to environmental challenges are constructed at the interdisciplinary intersection of journalism, science, politics, business and activism; and, in particular, how news values shape whose voices are heard in future-focused discourses.
Strengthening Communities with Media:
Dr Bill Dodd’s research examines hope and optimism (and other strengths identified by positive psychology) as vital social goods that the media have a role in distributing. He asks how emerging solutions and constructive journalism practices might distribute realistic optimism more equitably through communities, re-engaging diverse publics in the political process.
Fields of Research
- Journalism studies (470105)
- Communication studies (470101)
- Professional writing and journalism practice (360203)
- Australian government and politics (440801)
- Climate change processes (370201)
- Other education (399999)
- Media studies (470107)
- The media (130204)
- Publishing and print services (220503)
- Other education and training (169999)
- Government and politics (230299)
- Environmental ethics (130303)
- Expanding knowledge in language, communication and culture (280116)
- Workforce transition and employment (160206)
Journal Article(3 outputs)
|2021||Dodd B, 'A feel for the frame: towards a Bourdieusian frame analysis', Poetics pp. 1-11. ISSN 0304-422X (In Press) [Refereed Article]|
|2019||Dodd B, Konkes C, Reid D, Lester L, 'A freelance-based foreign exchange programme: Tasmanian students' professional development on WORLDREP', Australian Journalism Review, 41, (1) pp. 85-102. ISSN 0810-2686 (2019) [Refereed Article]|
Co-authors: Konkes C; Reid D; Lester L
|2017||Dodd B, 'Propositional journalism and navigational leadership in Tasmania', Platform: journal of media and communication, 8, (2) pp. 68-82. ISSN 1836-5132 (2017) [Refereed Article]|
Conference Publication(7 outputs)
|2020||Dodd B, 'Agonistic hopes in 'New Tasmania': the utility and liability of ecological hope in solutions journalism', Proceedings of 70th Annual ICA Conference, 19-27 May 2020 (2020) [Conference Extract]|
|2019||Dodd B, Lester L, 'Between public and brand engagement: communicating an ecological crisis', The 69th Annual International Communication Association Conference, 24-28 May, Washington, D.C. (2019) [Conference Extract]|
Co-authors: Lester L
|2018||Dodd B, 'Solutions journalism and the politically awkward question of leadership', Annual Conference of the Journalism Education and Research Association of Australia, 3-5 December, The Media School of the University of Tasmania (2018) [Conference Extract]|
|2018||Dodd B, Hughes C, 'News media, minority governments and 'New Tasmania'', The Media School Friday Seminar, 17 August, The University of Tasmania (2018) [Plenary Presentation]|
Co-authors: Hughes C
|2018||Reid D, Forde S, Munk I, Touwen C, Dodd B, 'Freelancing, Foreign Exchange and Professional Development: Discussing the Europe and Australia in the World exchange programme', Annual Conference of the Journalism Education and Research Association of Australia, 3-5 December, The Media School of the University of Tasmania (2018) [Conference Extract]|
|2017||Dodd B, 'Propositional journalism and navigational leadership in Tasmania', The Annual Conference of the Australian & New Zealand Communication Association, 4 - 7 July, The University of Sydney, pp. 64-65. (2017) [Conference Extract]|
|2016||Dodd B, 'Framing the Future: A Tasmanian Case Study', Institute for the Study of Social Change: Friday Seminar Series, 30 September, Hobart, Tasmania (2016) [Conference Extract]|
|2018||Dodd W, 'Framing the Future: Propositional Journalism and the Construction of Leadership in New Tasmania'' (2018) [PhD]|
|2012||Dodd B, 'Natural, unnatural, national: The Australian's framing of natural disaster and climate change' (2012) [Masters Research]|
Other Public Output(4 outputs)
|2020||Dodd B, 'Remembering 'New Tasmania': Journalism & the Shape of the New', Tasmanian Times, Tasmania, 11 June (2020) [Newspaper Article]|
|2019||Dodd B, 'Tasmania fires risk 'wiping out' ancient species', Al Jazeera, Al Jazeera Media Network, Qatar, 19 February (2019) [Newspaper Article]|
|2019||Dodd B, 'Australian state allows optional listing of gender on birth certificates', Eye Witness News, Primedia Broadcasting, Cape Town, 11 April (2019) [Newspaper Article]|
|2016||Dodd B, 'Talking Point: Answer is blowin' in the wind', The Mercury, News Pty. Ltd., Hobart, 8 June (2016) [Newspaper Article]|