ABC must innovate to do more with less, says Mark Scott

The ABC will need to look for more “backroom savings” to overcome future challenges, Mark Scott argues in speech today. But can Aunty catch up in a digital world?

The ABC will need to remain innovative so it can do more with less in the future, Mark Scott told students at Queensland University of Technology this morning, adding that the broadcaster is considering outsourcing a wide range of support functions.

Scott argued that the ABC had done well at creating popular new products, citing the success of initiatives such as ABC24 — created with funds freed up by previous efficiency drives — iView and VoteCompass — a message to the government that it should not underestimate the importance of investment in innovation.

Yet in a time of stretched budgets, it will be increasingly important to make sure the broadcaster is getting the most back for its buck. “The challenge at the ABC is to ensure networks provide high quality content whilst ensuring investment is at the right level, work processes are efficient and effective and programming is relevant and engaging to audiences,” he said.

“We must acknowledge how much the world has been altered by digital media, and how rapidly and urgently we need to change to deal with this. Changes that might have taken ten years in the analogue age now take place within the space of one.”

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