2014 - 21 Freelance Audio Producer 

Over the last six years I've made dozens of radio documentaries, discussion programmes, podcasts and audiobooks for BBC Radio 3, Radio 4, the BBC World Service and Audible.

2020 ended for me with a commission to make a three-part series on the future of art for Radio 4 in early 2021 and funding to make a pilot of my dream history project. 

I continue to work with my former colleagues at BBC Radio Documentaries as well as making content for BBC Bristol and BBC Cardiff and for independent production companies such as TBI, Wire Free Productions and Boffin Media. 

Alan Rusbridger, Bridget Kendall and Sarfraz Manzoor are just some of the presenters I've worked with; contributors include Brian Eno, David Attenborough, Rob Delaney and Chiwetel Ejiofor.

My BBC World Service projects include co-producing a four-part series for The Compass on The Future of English in 2018, devising and producing an hour-long edition of The Arts Hour with David Attenborough in 2019 and putting together the stories of Kamala Harris, Janet Yellen and other global figureheads for Women in Power in 2020. 

For BBC Radio 4 and Radio 3, I've made radio essays and documentaries on the arts, history, science and technology as well as editions of Jonathan Freedland's The Long View, Fi Glover's The Listening Project and Bringing Up Britain with Mariella Frostrup. I have also researched and cast editions of Desert Island Discs and Melvyn Bragg's In Our Time.

Thelonious Monk and John Betjeman and the future of the world's great museums are the subjects of some of my recent arts documentaries. I've produced panel discussions on advances in AI, Big Data and drone technology and my history programmes have told stories ranging from Renaissance Florence to the life of Guy Burgess. 

My news and current affairs output for Radio 4 includes commissioning and making radio essays in the aftermath of the Charlie Hebdo attack, a documentary on Trump and the Media with Alan Rusbridger and another on US-China trade tensions with economist George Magnus.



2001 - 2011 BBC Radio Documentaries


Before taking a break to have kids, I was employed as a producer for ten years by BBC Radio Documentaries. I cut my teeth on Radio 4's Word of Mouth with Michael Rosen, produced the live weekly show Last Word with Matthew Bannister for more than a year, worked with Mevlyn Bragg, produced Andrew Marr and generally had a ball.


I made more than a hundred documentaries, many my own commissions and many history-related. I made programmes about the Cuban Missile Crisis, the War in the Pacific, the Greek Civil War, the Portuguese Revolution, the Hungarian Uprising, the American Civil War, China's Cultural Revolution and travelled around Spain to make a three-part series on the Spanish Civil War. 

But it wasn't all war...I drove the M25 in a Porsche with James May to tell the story of City boys and an illegal midnight road race and I travelled to Maputo, Warsaw, Moscow, Beirut and Beijing to make Radio 3 Sunday Features about the visual arts, cinema and history.  

I also explored the business world from sub-prime mortgages to a faltering housing market, stalling growth and growing national debt. I made programmes that predicted and dissected the 2008 financial crisis and its aftermath, including The City - Is the Party Over ? made in the winter of 2007. 

With presenters including Michael Portillo, Evan Davis, economist Stephanie Flanders, politician Sadiq Khan and journalist Darcus Howe, I produced high-profile series and one-off documentaries on the meaning of democracy, the nature of capitalism and a decade of change to British and US politics and the economy.


1999 - 2001 BBC World Service


I started my radio career at BBC English in the BBC World Service, where I was commissioned to write a book on Business English and help produce English-teaching programmes to be broadcast around the world.
Julia Johnson | Radio producer | Audio producer | Podcast producer