Lee Duffield

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Dr Lee Richard Duffield (born 1947 in Townsville, Australia) was the ABC (Australia) correspondent in 1989 who reported from the media conference where the opening of the Berlin Wall was announced. He teaches Journalism at the Queensland University of Technology (QUT), and writes on media in Europe, development news in the Asia Pacific, and education for journalism..

Academic career[edit]

Credentials and academic engagement[edit]

Academic credentials: University of Queensland: BA, Dip. Ed., Dip. Jour., B.Ed.St.; Sydney University: MA (Merit); James Cook University: PhD.

Duffield is currently a Journalism lecturer at QUT in Brisbane. He is associated with postgraduate programs, directly supervising Higher Degree students to completion at doctoral level.Lee Duffield monitors the internationalisation movement in Higher Education, in his research and teaching. He founded and coordinates a program for Journalism students to work outside Australia as part of their studies, as overseas correspondents for campus-based media outlets—towards careers in globalised mass media. More than 50 students have taken part in this program, in 12 Asian and European countries.

He is a member of the Advisory Board of the refereed, online academic journal, eJournalist, Brisbane, [www.ejournalist.com.au]; and he is a Research Associate at the Pacific Media Centre (Te Amokura), AUT, Auckland, New Zealand. In 2006-7 he undertook a professional refresher exercise of one year, accredited with the European commission media centre at Brussels, reporting again for ABC News and Radio Australia, and the Community Radio Network in Australia. He is the Editor of EUAustralia Online [1], a publishing experiment used also in journalism training and research.


Duffield’s doctoral thesis in 2003 was a reflection on professional practice in 1989, drawing on a review of media from that time and extensive interviews with a panel of correspondents who covered the fall of the communist states. For the 20th anniversary he has published a monograph:Duffield L (2009), Berlin Wall in the News: Mass Media and the fall of the Eastern Bloc in Europe, 1989, VDM Verlag, Saarbrücken. He is also the principal editor of a symposium on journalistic practice in the new world economy. He has also written: Duffield L and J Cokley (2006), I, Journalist: Coping with and crafting media information in the 21st Century, Sydney, Pearson.

He has published extensively in academic journals and through conferences. (For full text copies of articles, see QUT ePrints database [2]).

Journalism career[edit]

Lee Duffield was a journalist with the Australian Broadcasting Corporation (ABC) for 22 years, in radio and television news. For five years he was the first news editor of the national youth radio network in Australia, Triple j. He became the ABC’s European Correspondent at Brussels, 1987 – 1991, taking assignments in 16 countries, and covering the dramatic events of the collapse of the Eastern bloc.

Duffield’s first international journalistic experience had been as a junior journalist reporting for the BBC on a tropical cyclone striking the city of Townsville. It was Christmas Eve 1971; and news of the devastation was in some demand from newsrooms around the world, a little becalmed during the holiday break. He was a 1976 Jefferson Fellow at the East West Centre, in Hawaii; a residential program on international communication for small groups of Asian and Pacific journalists.

From 1992 to 1996 he was a speechwriter, Deputy Director of Ministerial Media and a Senior Media Advisor with the Government of Queensland; and later was briefly the Public Affairs Officer with the Australian High Commission in New Zealand.