UK's National Film and Television School's new production tech degree

John Maxwell Hobbs
Neal Romanek
August 16th 2016 at 12:30PM : By Neal Romanek

The course will be headed by former BBC Scotland head of technology John Maxwell-Hobbs

The UK's National Film and Television School will be offering a Production Technology MA to be lead by former BBC Scotland head of technology John Maxwell-Hobbs. The course has been introduced in response to fears of dearth of broadcast engineers and a looming industry tech skills gap.

Maxwell-Hobbs previously worked with Ericsson where he led mobile internet development and helped create the Delphi Pad, a forerunner of devices like the iPad. While at BBC Scotland, he launched broadcasting facility Pacific Quay, delivered BBC Alba and developed the BBC’s first fully file-based, HD workflow. He recently conceived and developed BBC Music’s initiative with PRS Foundation and BASCA to foster new British songwriters.

Bridging the creative and technological, John is also a music producer, composer and performer. He has produced performances by major artists, released several CDs of his own and composed scores for short films.

"It is a huge honour to lead the new Production Technology MA at such a prestigious institution as the NFTS," said Maxwell-Hobbs. "My passion is fusing art and creativity with technology and I am looking forward to instilling this combination into the new MA and inspiring the students to innovate. There is a huge skills gap in Production Technology, particularly in broadcasting, with many of the existing experts about to retire so I would encourage anyone interested in film and production and who has a creative flare to apply for this course. We need to foster new talent in this area; without technology, the stories can’t be told.”

“We are delighted to welcome John to the NFTS," said Nik Powell, NFTS director. "His extensive experience in the worlds of technology and the arts is a fantastic addition to the school.”

The two-year Production Technology MA aims to give students the skills required to support all aspects of production technology in live and recorded environments and an understanding of industry technologies and workflows, with the opportunity to specialise in a chosen area. Applications for the Production Technology MA are open now until October 13th 2016 and the course will commence in January 2017.