TV works

Cas Goossens

Educated as a Germanics scholar, Cas Goossens (b. 1937) started his career in 1961 as a journalist for Belgian Radio and Television. In 1966, Goossens became editorial secretary of the radio news service, where he was a co-founder of the trendsetting news programme, Actueel (Topical). In 1975, Goossens, whose profile was clearly Christian Democrat, moved over to television as secretary to the general director of the public broadcasting network at the time, Paul Vandenbussche. When Vandenbussche retired in 1986, after a 26-year term of office, Goossens was appointed general director of the BRT. As head of the Flemish public broadcasting service, Goossens’ leadership was characterized by a frenetic search for an efficient answer to the VTM commercial broadcasting company, which started up in 1989. On the one hand, Goossens was confronted by internal problems (structural reforms, protest from unions and staff members), and on the other by strong competition and increasing pressure from political parties and government interference. Goossens engineered a strict financial reorganization, postponing projects and replacing planned programmes with repeats and remakes. The funds thus freed became available to rework previously successful programmes and increase broadcasting time. In 1996, his attempts to reform the network led to a new organizational structure. Goossens could not himself reap the rewards, however. Before that time arrived, in 1996, the Flemish government forced the entire BRTN leadership, including Goossens, into early retirement. In 1998, Cas Goossens wrote a book on the Flemish network: Radio en televisie in Vlaanderen: een geschiedenis (Radio and Television in Flanders: a History), (Davidsfonds, Leuven). [Daniël Biltereyst]