Finalists announced for the Helen O’Flynn and Alan Knight Award for Best Industrial Reporting

The Walkley Foundation is delighted to announce the finalists for the inaugural year of the Helen O’Flynn and Alan Knight Award for Best Industrial Reporting.

This award was created in partnership with MEAA, Unions NSW, AiGroup, University of Technology Sydney, AustralianSuper and the Australian Council of Trade Unions. It recognises outstanding journalism that captures the importance and the complexities of a robust industrial relations ecosystem for Australian workers and businesses.

The judges were Peter Kennedy and Judy Hughes, both former industrial relations reporters, and The Australian’s Sid Maher. They said they were pleased to see a very broad range of media represented in this category. Entries ranged from comprehensive print features to a radio documentary, television reports, online interactive features and even a sequence of comic illustrations. Journalists involved came from both large and very small newsrooms, capital cities as well as regional centres.

Judges’ comments: “Industrial reporting can be extremely difficult to cover given the complexity of the relevant legislation, the multiplicity of organisations involved and the often highly politicised nature of policy debates. As expected, we saw some high-calibre work from seasoned industrial reporters, but it was also encouraging to see a variety of journalists experimenting with different kinds of media to make industrial stories interesting and relevant to their audiences. The entries covered issues ranging from the exploitation of vulnerable workers to sexual harassment, the gig economy and behind-the-scenes political power struggles.”

Finalists, in alphabetical order, include:

Ewin Hannan, The Australian, “Watchdog loses teeth but will have bite” “Penalty cuts pain and gain mired in confusion” “Pressure points”
Anna Patty, Janie Barrett, Matt Teffer and Michael Howard, The Sydney Morning Herald, The Age, The Illawarra Mercury, “The Great Student Swindle”
Ben Schneiders, Royce Millar and Nick Toscano, The Age, “Macca’s workers underpaid by millions” “Shopped Out” “Sold out: quarter of a million workers underpaid in union deals”

The award was open to journalists working in all media and not only to designated industrial relations reporters. The winner will be chosen on the basis of journalistic excellence and announced at the Walkleys’ Mid-Year Award Celebration on July 26, 2017, in Sydney.

Read more about the accomplished industrial relations journalists Helen O’Flynn (1920-1984) and Alan Knight (1949-2017) on the Walkleys’ award page.

The Walkley Foundation thanks all award partners for their support.


Media enquiries: Kate Golden, / 02 9333 0951
Award questions: Lauren Dixon, / 02 9333 0913