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Corporate services


In order to communicate the strength and value of the ABC's offering to all Australians, ABC Audiences' brand and marketing activities in 2019-20 worked towards dual objectives: to increase awareness and engagement with lighter audiences and deepen the relationship with core ABC audiences by moving them across platforms, ultimately building sustainable audiences for the ABC.

Strategies employed to achieve this included:

  • offering a more personalised digital experience, in line with audience expectations, with new ways to discover and consume content
  • prioritising the most relevant, distinctive and diverse Australian stories; stories that contribute to a sense of national identity
  • continuing to play a valuable role in Australian society by providing news, information and education in a trusted space
  • building community connections across locations and interests.

The largest wholesale project for Audiences during 2019-20 was the formation and co-sponsorship of the personalised audience experience (PAX) project, aimed at better surfacing content of interest and relevance to audiences.


In 2019-20, Strategy coordinated the development of the ABC Five-Year Plan 2020-2025, conducting extensive analysis of the ABC's operating environment, audience trends, and future scenarios. The team also assisted the content divisions with the development of their strategic plans, while ensuring alignment with other divisions' planning and the overarching Five-Year Plan as it developed.

Content Ideas Lab (CIL) set up a Content Innovation team, whose main focus was to pilot new content formats, distribution methods and ways of working. The work aimed to answer key questions about the future to ensure organisational preparedness, and surface learnings that could be passed on to the rest of the Corporation.

The CIL team developed an approach to commissioning content innovation ideas that ensured pilots had an alignment to strategy, audience research and trends, and that they involved collaboration with teams across the ABC.

Legal Services

In 2019-20, ABC Legal provided quality legal services to the whole of the Corporation through the dedicated work of its specialist teams, including through:

  • 24/7 prepublication advice to content makers across the ABC on programs, podcasts and investigations, together with the delivery of legal training to over 3000 content makers
  • handling 100 legal complaints, defending defamation claims and managing litigation, including the aftermath of the Australian Federal Police raids and challenging suppression order applications
  • making and contributing to submissions on law reform matters including appearing at hearings and inquiries (see Appendix 10 - Law reform for a list of submissions)
  • regulatory advice work on privacy, freedom of information, public interest disclosure, the ABC Act and the PGPA Act
  • contracting finance, production and rights agreements for 124 productions
  • negotiating technology contracts and the acquisition of hardware, software and support services
  • advising on construction matters and property management and maintenance contracts
  • assisting ABC Commercial with content licensing, book and magazine publishing, and music recording, licensing and publishing agreements
  • undertaking copyright clearances, rights assessments for re-use and supply, and the coordination of repeat fees and residuals for myriad programs and services.