Portrait of  Deirdre O’Neill Deirdre O’Neill

d.oneill@hud.ac.uk | 01484 478442


Deirdre O’Neill joined the University in September 2014 as a Senior Lecturer in Journalism and Media (0.6 FTE). She currently teaches Working in the Media. Deirdre has taught in HE for a number of years and is a former magazine journalist and press officer. Since entering HE, Deirdre has combined her experience of media and journalism practice with academic research.

Deirdre is the nationally elected Secretary of the Association of Journalism Education and co-editor of the journal Journalism Education.

She has carried out research on news values, news sources, trade unions and the media and women and the media, including women’s sports coverage and women sports writers, as well as coverage of female politicians in the press, and some of this research has been covered in the press (http://www.newstatesman.com/writers/124178


She also received a grant from the AJE to carry out research into the representation of female politicians in the press.

She is currently updating her 2001 News Values Research with Tony Harcup (University of Sheffield) (forthcoming, Journalism Studies).

Research and Scholarship

Deirdre’s research is concerned with conceptualising and applying news values in the 21st century, and how this translates into the news we receive.

Her work focuses on the fundamental issue of what is news, how news is selected and presented, and who is used as a source of news. It involves quantitative and qualitative research to examine the extent and way news judgments and sources affect how some sections of society are represented in the news, and the subsequent implications for society.

Her main research on news values attempts to deconstruct the factors governing the selection and construction of news to produce a set of news values for the 21st century (Harcup and O’Neill, 2001; 2016). 

Publications and Other Research Outputs


Franks, S. and O'Neill, D. (2016) ‘Women reporting sport: Still a man's game?Journalism: Theory, Practice and Criticism , 17 (4), pp. 474-492. ISSN 1741-3001

Harcup, T. and O'Neill, D. (2016) ‘What is news? News values revisited (again)Journalism Studies . ISSN 1461-670X

O'Neill, D. and Franks, S. (2016) ‘A sporting chance for women? Exploring gender imbalance on the sports desks of UK national newspapersMedia Report to Women , 44 (1). ISSN 0145-9651

O'Neill, D., Savigny, H. and Cann, V. (2016) ‘Women Politicians in the UK Press: Not seen and not heard?Feminist Media Studies , 16 (2), pp. 293-307. ISSN 1468-0777


O'Neill, D. and Mulready, M. (2015) ‘The Invisible Woman? A comparative study of women's sports coverage in the UK national press before and after the 2012 Olympic GamesJournalism Practice , 9 (5), pp. 651-668. ISSN 1751-2786


O'Neill, D. and Savigny, H. (2014) ‘Female politicians in the British press: The exception to the ‘masculine’ norm?Journalism Education , 3 (1), pp. 6-27.


O'Neill, D (2012) ‘No cause for celebration: the rise of celebrity news values in the British quality pressJournalism Education , 1 (2), pp. 26-44.


O'Neill, D. and Harcup, T. (2008) ‘News Values and Selectivity’. In: The Handbook of Journalism Studies. : Routledge. pp. 161-174. ISBN 9780805863420

O'Neill, D. and O�Connor, C. (2008) ‘The Passive Journalist: How sources dominate the local newsJournalism Practice , 2 (3), pp. 487-500. ISSN 1751-2786


O'Neill, D (2007) ‘From Hunky Heroes to Dangerous Dinosaurs: Journalism-union relations, news access and press coverage in the 2002-3 British Fire Brigades Union disputeJournalism Studies , 8 (5), pp. 813-830. ISSN 1461-670X


Harcup, T. and O'Neill, D. (2001) ‘What Is News? Galtung and Ruge revisitedJournalism Studies , 2 (2), pp. 261-280. ISSN 1461-670X



Co-editor of Journalism Education, the journal of the AJE



Elected national Secretary of the Association of Journalism Education for second term in June 2014 (which represents 50+ universities)

Representative in 2013 of the AJE at the Newspaper Society’s Training Group (a professional body which represents all local and regional press)


Invited symposia, presentations and talks

Paper presented at ICA annual conference in May 2015, Puerto Rico, on women sports writers

Paper presented at AJE seminar, London January 2015, on women, politics and the press

Presented research on press coverage of female politicians to All-Party Parliamentary Group on Sex Equality on 8th July 2014, Portcullis House, London,  and research referenced in parliamentary report ‘Improving Parliament: Creating a better and more representative house’ by the APPG Women in Parliament (published July 2014).

Paper presented at ICA annual conference in May 2014, Seattle, on women’s sports coverage

Paper presented at PSA Media Group conference on female politicians in the press, Bournemouth University, November 2013.

Paper presented at Institute of Communication Ethics annual conference, London, on sexism in the press, October 2013.

Chairing a session questioning lead academic on her work on ‘Women Experts on TV and Radio News’ as part of City University’s ‘Women on Air’ conference (Centre for Law, Justice and Journalism),  an ‘invitation-only’ event involving politicians, media practitioners, academics and high-profile feminist campaigners (4th April 2014)

Invited speaker at  ‘Women Reporting Sport: Still a Man’s Game?’ at Challenges and Changes: Women in Journalism and Media, MeCCSA Postgraduate Network Conference at Liverpool John Moores University (12 March 2014)

Invited panel member to give a talk about standards in the press at the Social History Society Annual Conference, Leeds University, 26 March 2013

Invited speaker at a conference on news values at The University of Haifa, Israel, in October 2011


External examining

External examiner at University of Salford on Jt Hons in Journalism programme (2009 - 2013).

External examiner at Staffordshire University for BA in Journalism  (2008 - 2011) 


Peer reviewing

Peer reviewing of articles for international journals (latest for international journal Journalism: Theory, Practice and Criticism)


Press coverage of research

‘Female issues “invisible” during the election, Yorkshire Post 11/5/15


Fisher, L (2014) ‘Female MPs in the press – slated or ignored’, New Statesman, 10th July 2014.


Rigby, E (2014) ‘Hostile Press blamed for lack of women MPs’, Financial Times, 25th April 2014


Enterprise Activities

Organising training via AJE for media industry staff making transition to HE 

Teaching and Professional Activities

Working for the Media