New Generation Thinkers



This pioneering scheme aims to develop a new generation of academics who can bring the best of university research and scholarly ideas to a broad audience through working with the media. It’s a chance for early career researchers to cultivate the skills to communicate their research findings to those outside the academic community.

Each year, up to 60 successful applicants have a chance to develop their media skills, including programme-making ideas with experienced BBC producers at a series of dedicated workshops.

Of these up to ten will become BBC Radio 3’s resident New Generation Thinkers and benefit from a unique opportunity to develop their own programmes for the station and a chance to regularly appear on air. There will also be the possibility of working with BBC TV, a number of speak opportunities and the chance to become a regular blogger.

New Generation Thinkers was launched in November 2010 at Radio 3's Free Thinking Festival of Ideas. Since 2010, 120 academics from across the UK have presented documentaries on Radio 3, the BBC World Service and also taken part in discussion programmes and made taster films for BBC Arts Online. Listeners can hear contributions from previous New Generation Thinkers on Radio 3's Free Thinking programme and via the Free Thinking website.

BBC Radio 3 and its programmes Free Thinking, the Verb, the Essay and the Sunday Feature have provided a platform for debate and commentary from scholars across the world. You can listen to 2017's New Generation Thinkers (NGTs) delivering Free Thinking Essays at Sage, Gateshead online now. Further details on their attendance at the Free Thinking Festival are also listed in the Read, Watch, Listen area of the AHRC Website. NGTs have also appeared as part of the BBC's PromsExtra 2017 Festival.

The 2018 Scheme has now launched. Follow the link at the bottom of the page to discover more and apply.

Free Thinking Festival 2017: The Speed of Life

Experts List

Finalists of the AHRC's and BBC Radio3's New Generation Thinkers Scheme are included here as experts in their field. The list includes their research specialisms and contact details.

New Generation Thinkers continue to talk about their work, research and involvement in different projects. Read the latest interviews in the Read, Watch and Listen Section.

New Generation Thinkers Film

To celebrate AHRC’s tenth anniversary year and five years of the New Generation Thinkers scheme, a short film has been produced which follows the journey of NGT applicants with interviews from those who got to the 2015 workshops and with winners from previous years.