Prof Matthew Hills

BA (Sussex), MA (Goldsmiths), PhD (Sussex)

Additional Information

I was awarded a £72,795 ‘BBC/AHRC Knowledge Transfer’ grant in 2007. This project, 'Listener online engagement with BBC radio programming', ran for one year, and I had a part-time Research Associate working with me. Acting as a co-investigator with colleagues based at Birmingham City University and London Metropolitan, my strand of the research involved studying online fan cultures in relation to celebrity DJs such as Terry Wogan. As well as reporting back to BBC Future Media and Technology and BBC Audio and Music, I published a journal article based on this research in a special issue of The Radio Journal.

I have also been the recipient of a £48,000 'Innovation Award' Grant by the AHRB in 2002. This project, on which I was sole investigator, was entitled 'Reconceptualising the unconscious in qualitative audience research', and ran for one year. I appointed a Research Associate, Dr. Jamie Sexton, to work with me on the project. Research outcomes included article for the US journal American Behavioral Scientist and for the USC journal Spectator (both special issues on media fandom that I was invited to write for).

I have also benefitted from a British Academy Small Grant which was awarded to support the establishment of a cross-institutional study group on Transitional Phenomena and Cultural Experience (TPACE), led by Professor Annette Kuhn. Research outcomes are forthcoming from this work, including a chapter in an edited collection on Winnicottian theory and film studies.


Media audiences and fandom; Doctor Who; Torchwood; Sherlock; cult film and TV more generally; digital culture.


Hills, M 2020, Welcome to the “Second-stage” Lynchverse: Twin Peaks: The Return and the Impossibility of Return Vs. Getting a Return. in MJP Wolf (ed.), Exploring Imaginary Worlds: Essays on Media, Structure, and Subcreation. Taylor & Francis, pp. 191-205.
Hills, M 2015, 'Cult cinema and the ‘mainstreaming’ discourse of technological change: revisiting subcultural capital in liquid modernity', New Review of Film and Television Studies, vol. 13, no. 1, pp. 100-121.
Hills, M 2015, 'Rebranding Doctor Who and reimagining Sherlock: ‘Quality’ television as ‘makeover TV drama’', Cultural Studies, vol. 18, no. 3, pp. 317-331.
Hills, M 2015, 'The expertise of digital fandom as a ‘community of practice’: Exploring the narrative universe of Doctor Who', Convergence, vol. 21, no. 3, pp. 360-374.
Hills, M 2013, 'BBC Wales' Torchwood as TV I, II and III: Changes in Television Horror', Cinephile: The University of British Columbia's Film Journal, vol. 6, no. 2, pp. 23-29. <>
More publications on the Research Portal