Adam Shaw, business reporter on BBC Radio 4's flagship Today programme, gave a talk as part of Coventry University's Coventry Conversations series.

Shaw, a former actor, made his name in business journalism alongside Adrian Chiles on the BBC's Working Lunch, where he pioneered the use of large-screen graphics to explain complex financial concepts. Very often these were conceived, planned and scripted in less than an hour. Shaw admitted that some of these sequences ended up with a 'juvenile' comic slant, which often only became obvious in the middle of the live programme. But Shaw pointed out the value of these explanations: "There is massive financial illiteracy... we hope to help."

Switching to Radio 4's Today programme had been 'a bit of a shock', Shaw said, as he moved from a relatively anonymous midday time slot with plenty of leeway for creativity to a more rigidly controlled, flagship programme to which he contributes tightly-focussed reports.

"Being a journalist is an amazing job," he said. "Privileged access to a whole range of people whose lives you poke your nose into."