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CHAPTER 1: MODELS OF GOVERNANCE AND REGULATION

Introduction

  1. The issues around the governance of the BBC, and how it should be regulated, have been much discussed over a considerable period. This Review has benefited from a number of documents which deal at length with the issues. I refer in particular to the ‘Independent Panel on the BBC Charter Review’ chaired by Lord Burns, with the final report dated January 2005 (‘The Burns Report’); and to the House of Commons Culture, Media and Sport Committee report ‘Future of the BBC’ dated February 2015 (‘the CMS Select Committee Report of February 2015’).
  2. As a result, most of the arguments for and against different models have been in the public domain for some time. But whilst the questions may be the same as those asked in the past, it is reasonable for the answers to be different, informed by further evidence of how existing models have worked, and by developing views on what represents good practice.
  3. The Consultation Paper was published in July 2015 by the Secretary of State and set out three possible models:
    1. the existing Trust model, with the BBC Executive and BBC Trust both covered by the BBC Charter, would be retained, albeit with some changes to reflect things which have gone well and those which have not;
    2. the OfBeeb model, leaving governance of the BBC within a unitary Board, and removing the regulatory functions to a new public services broadcasting body, OfBeeb; and
    3. the Ofcom model, again leaving governance of the BBC within a unitary Board, but moving the regulatory role to Ofcom. 
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