Robert James Dell'Oro Thomson (born 11 March 1961) is an Australian journalist and the Chief Executive of News Corp, a role he assumed in January 2013. He is the former managing editor of the Wall Street Journal, a post he held since May 2008 News Corp. Chairman Rupert Murdoch named Thomson as the paper's new managing editor, succeeding Marcus Brauchli. He is former editor of The Times newspaper in London.
Thomson was born in Torrumbarry, Victoria and studied at Christian Brothers College, St Kilda and the Royal Melbourne Institute of Technology. At school, he played Australian rules football and in his final years was a member of the First XVIII football team. In 1977, Thomson gained a profound interest in tennis, challenging all the locals in his home town of Elwood, Melbourne. He started as a journalist in 1979, when he joined The Herald in Melbourne, working as a finance and general affairs reporter before becoming the paper’s Sydney correspondent. In 1983, he was hired by The Sydney Morning Herald as a senior feature writer, and was nominated by the paper for Australian Journalist of the Year for his work examining the country’s judiciary. His grandmother's family name was Dell'Oro, as she came from Domodossola, in Northern Italy.
Robert Thomson became Editor of the US edition of the Financial Times in the summer of 1998, taking editorial responsibility for the FT Group's ambitious drive into the US market, where the newspaper's circulation trebled in four years. He was named US Business Journalist of the Year in 2001 by the influential trade journal TJFR/NewsBios.
He was in the running to become editor of the Financial Times when Richard Lambert stepped down from the role in 2001, but came second to Andrew Gowers. Soon afterwards, he was appointed editor of The Times of London on 6 March 2002.
Prior to arriving in New York, he was Editor of the Weekend FT and Assistant Editor of the Financial Times (FT). He orchestrated a redesign of the Weekend FT in late 1996 and that edition became the fastest growing newspaper in the UK market during 1997. He was also responsible for the evolution of the occasional "How to Spend It" magazine into an award-winning monthly.
From 1994 to 1996, he was the FT’s Foreign News Editor in London, overseeing the paper’s extensive network of correspondents. Thomson had been a correspondent himself in Tokyo (1989–1994), and in Beijing (1985–1989), where he reported on the country’s economic and social reforms.
He is the author of The Judges: A Portrait of the Australian Judiciary (Allen & Unwin) and co-author of The Chinese Army (Weldon Owen) and he edited a collection of humorous writing (True Fiction, published by Penguin Books).
Under Thomson, The Times paid more attention to international politics, business, financial markets and sport. In 2003, The Times launched a compact edition alongside the broadsheet format and one year later on 1 November 2004 The Times became 100% compact.
Thomson is married to Wang Ping, the daughter of a general in the Chinese People's Liberation Army.
Robert Thomson was given an honorary doctorate and was a keynote speaker at RMIT University's Dec 2010 graduation.