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New BBC Controller of Editorial Policy appointed

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The new BBC Controller of Editorial Policy will be Stephen Whittle, currently Director of the Broadcasting Standards Commission and formerly BBC Chief Adviser, Editorial Policy. His role will be to ensure that the BBC sets and observes the highest ethical and editorial standards.

Stephen will take up his post on July 9, succeeding current Controller, Editorial Policy Phil Harding who is moving to the BBC World Service as Director of English Networks and News.

Stephen has been Director of the BSC for five years. Before that, as BBC Chief Adviser, Editorial Policy, he helped to write the first edition of the BBC Producers’ Guidelines which set standards for programme makers. Between 1989 and 1993 he was Head of Religious Programmes for the BBC. Stephen joined the BBC in Manchester in 1977 from the World Council of Churches where he was Deputy Director, Communications.

Stephen said "It will be very good to get back to the front line and the challenges of getting programmes of ambition and quality to air. I look forward to working with the programme teams and contributing my experience to ensure the BBC remains the standard setter".

BBC Director of Public Policy Caroline Thomson said: "Stephen is well known to many colleagues at the BBC. He will bring a wealth of knowledge and experience to the post of Controller, Editorial Policy and I very much look forward to working with him."

BSC Chairman Lords Dubs of Battersea said: "Stephen's departure is a sad loss for the Commission as he has done a great job with us over the past five years. We wish him well on his return to the BBC where I'm sure he'll prove to be a tower of strength."

Editorial Policy formulates policy and provides advice across the BBC on issues of editorial and ethical judgment ranging from fairness and impartiality to taste and decency, product prominence and privacy. It reports to the Executive Committee and the Board of Governors on the BBC's performance.

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