Robin Hamman is the Director of Digital at Edelman (London), the World’s largest independent communications agency, with over 4500 people in 64 offices globally.
With around 14 years professional experience of helping businesses, particularly in the broadcasting industry but also other sectors, meet their business goals by enabling their audiences, consumers and staff to participate within meaningful social frameworks online, Robin is widely regarded as one of the leading social media thinkers and practitioners in Europe and beyond.
Robin joined Edelman from Headshift, part of the Dachis Group, where he lead the social media team.
He has over 12 years experience of dreaming up, implementing and managing social media
projects. Robin left the BBC in 2008after
six years as Senior Community Producer, having taught his former
colleagues how to use social media to engage with, and reach out to new
audiences. Robin’s role as the BBC’s defacto
social media guru sent him to all corners of the organisation and, most
recently, he was the editorial and technical lead for the BBC’s network of 50+ programme and presenter blogs.
Robin has also gained experience working as an Executive Producer at
Granada Television, where he spearheaded strategic social media
consulting and new service launches for third party clients including
the British Council, several premier league football clubs, the DfES
and others. Prior to that, Robin was Community Evangelist for a
wireless start-up with a penchant for creating trendy sounding roles.
A regular speaker at industry and academic conferences, Robin has
also written about social media for The Guardian and The Independent
and has been interviewed on radio, television and in print in over a
Robin is a strong believer in the concept of life-long learning. He
holds a teaching degree, an MA in Sociology, an MPhil in Communication
Studies and a Post-Graduate Diploma in Law. He’s also a Non-Residential
Fellow at Stanford University’s Cyberlaw Department and a Visiting
Fellow in the Department of Journalism at City University London where
he’ll be teaching part-time starting in Autumn 2008.
Photos for use in promotional materials:
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A participant in online communities since 1985, Robin began studying them formally ten years later and, in 1998, began building and managing online discussions and communities professionally. He’s given presentations about online communities, user generated content and blogging at dozens of conferences and universities in the UK, Europe and USA.
Robin was formerly the Head of the BBC’s Blogs Network and the BBC’s de-facto social media guru. In addition to managing both editorial and technical aspects of the diverse network of blogs, Robin reached many hundreds, including numerous directors and many household names from television and radio, with talks and workshops about using social media to engage with audiences.
Prior to his role as the BBC’s Blogger in Chief, Robin contributed to a wide range of user generated content and community propositions at the BBC and elsewhere. Highlights are included in his career listing below.
Robin is a founding member and former committee member of e-mint, the International Association of Online Community Managers.
Robin’s personal blog is a must read for many of the leading figures in journalism and broadcasting. In 2007, the Press Gazette named Robin as "one of the UK’s most influential journalism bloggers" and broadcaster Chris Evans introduced Robin to his Radio 2 audience as "the King of Blogs".
- Non-Residential Fellow, Stanford University Cyberlaw
- Post-Graduate Diploma (CPE) Law, Hertfordshire
- MPhil Communication Studies, Liverpool
- MA w/ Distinction Sociology, Essex
- BA Secondary Education, Drake University (USA)
Career and Highlights
- Head of BBC Blogs Network, 2006 to present
- Launch of over 50+ blogs during second phase expansion of the BBC’s blogging efforts
- Creation and delivery of various workshops and training courses for a wide range of BBC people
- Spread awareness of blogging to hundreds of members of staff through speaking engagements and "leading by doing"
- Senior Broadcast Journalist / Senior Communities Producer, BBC English Regions New Media 2001 to present
- Provided editorial training and launch assistance for new (JiveSoft based) Have Your Say discussions (BBC News and BBC World Service)
- Provided strategy, implementation and management of user generated content and community propositions across the BBC’s 40+ local websites in England
- Launch and management of first and second generation message boards, as well as chat services, across the BBC’s local websites
- Executive Producer (Co-Head of Communities), Granada Media, 1999 – 2001
- Roll-out and management of message boards and chat for Wellbeing TV (whilst at Granada)
- Co-Management (with Jasmine Malik who later founded Tempero Moderation) of community services and teams at Granada Broadband
- Sold community strategy, build and management services to 3rd party clients including the British Council, Department for Education and Skills, Nationawide Building Society, Liverpool and Arsenal Football Clubs and others
- Communities Evangelist, TalkCast Corporation, 1999
- Developed various SMS based community propositions for mobile phones
- Assisted in launch of Texer, the UK’s first SMS chat service, and numerous message boards
- Community Producer, BBC Online 1998-99
- Co-Developed (with Lizzie Jackson) the BBC’s discussion
moderation and hosting policies and training, both of which are still
- Worked to roll out message boards on Howerd 1, the BBC’s first in-house message board platform
- Purchase, integration and roll out of the BBC chat service
- Co-Developed (with Lizzie Jackson) the BBC’s discussion
- Visiting Lecturer, Hypermedia Research Centre, University of Westminster 1998-2001
- Additionally, Robin has also consulted on projects by the Woodland Trust, General Teaching Council of England, Breast Cancer Trust and others. He’s also spoken at various organisations, including the Chartered Institute of Marketing.
- Online Matchmaking (2007), edited by Monica T. Whitty, Andrea J. Baker and James A. Inman.
- Chapter in Social Research Methods: A Reader (2003) edited by Clive Seale
- Chapter in Online Communities: Commerce, Community Action and the Virtual University (2001) edited by Miranda Mowbray and Chris Werry
- Chapter in オンライン・コミュニティ—eコマース、教育オンライン、非営利オンライン活動の最先端レポート (Japanese translation of Mowbray & Werry)
- Chapter in Community Informatics : Enabling Communities With Information and Communications Technologies (2000) edited by Michael Gurstein
- Chapter in Virtuelle Gruppen. Charakteristika und Problemdimensionen (2000) edited by Udo Thiedeke
Robin has also contributed articles to the Press Gazette; Connected (Scottish Executive’s Magazine for Educators); The Independent and The Guardian as well as to a number of magazines and academic journals.
Interviews with Robin have formed part of articles appearing on Journalism.co.uk and in the Guardian, the New York Times, the New York Post, Harpers Bazaar (Mexico), Quo (Mexico) Playboy (Poland), The Independent, Visao (Portugal), Rzeczpospolita (Poland), Internet Works, the Press Gazette, the Miami Herald and many others.
Selected Radio and Television Appearances
- occasional reporting for BBC Radio 5 Live’s “Pods and Blogs”
- interviewed by Chris Evans on BBC Radio 2
- interviewed by Victoria Derbshire on 5 Live Breakfast
- interviewed by Victoria Derbyshire on 5 Live Drive
- interviewed by BBC World Service for broadcast in Turkey and Mexico
- interviewed by Bob Garfield for NPR’s On the Media
- interviewed on Radio 702 Johannesburg
- interviewed by BBC Radio Northern Ireland and many of the BBC’s local radio stations across England
- interviewed on BlogTalkRadio
- interviewed on BBC London Evening News (TV)
- interviewed on BBC South Evening News (TV)
- interviewed by UK Living TV
- numerous appearances on The Wellbeing Channel (Granada/Boots joint venture)
- appearances in BBC World Service English training video and several BBC College of Journalism training videos
Robin has spoken at dozens of industry conferences and universities over the years, recent highlights of which have been DNA 2008, Multi-Media Meets Radio at the European Broadcasting Union, the Journalism Leaders Forum at UCLAN and the Networked Journalism Summit at CUNY.
Robin currently lives in St. Albans, a small city approximately twenty minutes commute from central London. You can find out more about Robin by exploring some of the "find and friend me" links on the right hand navigation of this page.
Last update: 21 October 2008
[This page supercedes a much older and out of date about page: http://www.cybersoc.com/who.html]