Andrew Jaspan, (b. 20 April 1952) British-Australian journalist, the co-founder of The Conversation, an independent not-for-profit website of analysis and news from the university and research sector and its Editor-in-Chief from The Conversation's launch in March 2011 until March 2017.
Between 2004 and 2008, Jaspan was the Editor-in-Chief of Melbourne’s The Age and The Sunday Age, a job from which he was later sacked following a massive newsroom revolt in which 235 journalists accused him of "degrading their ability to produce independent journalism."
Prior to this, he edited The Observer in London, The Scotsman, Scotland on Sunday, and Sunday Herald in the UK. Under Jaspan's editorship, the Sunday Herald won numerous internationally recognised SND awards. He also worked at The Times and Sunday Times and is also a former Editor-in-Chief and Publisher of The Big Issue.
Jaspan is the Asia-Pacific Director of Innovation Media International, on the Board of the RMIT Global Cities Research Institute, a speaker and participant in the Australian Davos conference, and was an observer in the 2020 Ideas Summit.
He is Adjunct Professor in School of Media and Communication, RMIT, Melbourne; Senior Research Fellow in the Faculty of Engineering and Infrastructure, University of Melbourne.
Jaspan joined The Age as Editor-in-Chief in October 2004. Throughout his appointment as Editor in Chief at The Age, circulation, readership and online figures increased.
After being sacked from The Age in 2008, Andrew started working with the higher education sector on The Conversation project. The website is based upon the idea of sharing the expertise of academia directly with the public and thus turning the university sector into a giant newsroom. Content is written by academics working in collaboration with professional editors using a custom built collaborative publishing platform. Andrew raised $9M from the university, government, corporate and research sector and launched The Conversation in early 2011. The project launched with the ambition to transform the research and analysis of leading universities and research bodies into a journalistic product that was freely accessible to the public.
In May 2013, The Conversation expanded with a launch into the UK, into the US in 2014, and into Africa and France in 2015.
In April 2008, Age journalists unanimously passed a motion accusing him of undermining their ability to report without fear or favour. In August 2008, Jaspan was sacked from his position and was replaced immediately as editor by senior deputy, Paul Ramadge. The move came a day after Fairfax announced 550 jobs would go from its Australian and New Zealand operations.
The Conversation, Jaspan's latest venture, has been described by Quadrant Magazine online as "one-sided," "lavishly-funded," and "staffed by left-leaning refugees from commercial news organisations' withered operations." Furthermore, right-wing website the commentator.com perceives it as being an outlet for radical left-wing politicians, such as the Syriza Party, which came to power in Greece on an anti-austerity and mildly pro-Marxist economic platform.