Last night STV celebrated two years of Expert Voices, a media workshop initiative designed to increase diversity on its news and current affairs programmes.

STV Expert Voices was established in 2021 to expand its network of subject matter experts and contributors and increase representation on screen.  The workshops are targeted at underrepresented groups and demystify media interviews for prospective media contributors by providing practical tips and advice to equip attendees with the confidence and skills required to appear on STV’s programmes.

So far, just shy of 1000 people have attended the free Expert Voices workshops – around 10% of whom have appeared on STV’s news and current affairs programming.

Last night's reception brought together the STV team with some of those who have taken part in STV Expert Voices so far.  Attendees at the event heard from a panel including STV’s Entertainment reporter, Laura Boyd; Nichola Kane, STV News’ Editor of Politics and Diversity; and two Expert Voices, Dr Christian Harrison an academic in the fields of Leadership & Entrepreneurship and Zamard Zahid, a former teacher and anti-racism campaigner.

Blockquote open Prior to taking part in STV Expert Voices, I had never participated in any sort of interview, and as a woman of colour, I didn’t feel I had the platform to share my views and lived experience. You cannot be what you cannot see – so an initiative like STV Expert Voices is a real trailblazer.

“The support offered by STV’s news team has removed any barriers and increased my confidence, and I’ve now taken part in a number of media appearances and live debates. I’d encourage anyone who is passionate about their industry, or has lived experience they’d like to share, to take part in STV Expert Voices and to help them join the on-screen conversation. Blockquote close

Zamard Zahid Expert Voice, former teacher and anti-racism campaigner