Rob Wells

Rob Wells

Assistant Professor

(ARSC)-Arts & Sciences

(JOUR)-School of Journalism and Strategic Media

Phone: 479-575-6305

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Rob Wells is an assistant professor of journalism and has been teaching at the University of Arkansas since the Fall 2016 semester. He earned his doctorate in philosophy in Journalism Studies at the University of Maryland's Philip Merrill College of Journalism. His academic research is in business journalism, media history, data journalism and technology. He was a 2012 Reynolds Visiting Professor at the University of South Carolina, Columbia, a program sponsored by the Donald W. Reynolds National Center for Business Journalism.  As an adjunct instructor, he taught reporting classes at the Merrill College between 2010-2016. He is writing a book about the problems and future of business journalism, to be published by the University of Illinois Press in 2019.

Wells is the former deputy bureau chief for Dow Jones Newswires/Wall Street Journal in Washington, D.C., where he oversaw 22 reporters who covered real-time business, economics and financial news in the nation's capital. Prior to this, he was a business reporter for Dow Jones, Bloomberg News and The Associated Press. He holds a master's degree in liberal studies from St. John's College in Annapolis, where he studied philosophy, literature, history and political science.


Business journalism.

Financial history.


U.S. politics

Financial crises.

Data journalism, communications theory, basic, intermediate, advanced reporting

Academic Publications

Chadha, Kalyani and Rob Wells, “Journalistic Responses to Technological Innovation in Newsrooms” Digital Journalism. Janury 2016.


“What Would Aristotle Say About Bill Clinton? Or Why We Excuse Moral Weakness” Palaver, Web. The University of North Carolina, Wilmington, Graduate Liberal Studies Program. Fall 2013.


“Rumor and the Aeneid” Palaver, Web. The University of North Carolina, Wilmington, Graduate Liberal Studies Program. Summer 2013.

Dow Jones Newswires/The Wall Street Journal, Washington, D.C.: 2002-2011.

--Deputy Bureau Chief, WSJ, Washington, Dec. 2010-Nov. 2011. Ran real-time news coverage for combined WSJ/Newswires bureau, 70 reporters. Edited and assigned articles for Newswires, and The Wall Street Journal. Recruited, hired and trained reporters.

--Newswires Washington Bureau Chief, Dec. 2006-Dec. 2010. Managed 22-person Newswires staff. Assigned, edited articles. Recruited, hired and trained reporters.

--Deputy Bureau Chief, June 2002-Dec. 2006: Tax reporter for Newswires, covered Congress, IRS, executive agencies; assisted running Newswires bureau. Articles published in The Wall Street Journal. Recruited, trained reporters.


Bloomberg News, Washington, D.C., 1998-2002.

--Banking and tax reporter, covered Congress, IRS, financial regulators. Helped manage two-person banking team.


The Associated Press, Reporter, 1987-1998.

--Washington: Tax Writer, Business writer, 1994-1998. New York: Business writer, banking, 1990-1994. Pikeville, Ky.: Correspondent, 1989-1990. Fresno, Ca.: Reporter, 1987-1989. Carson City, Nev.: Reporter, 1987

Association for Education in Journalism and Mass Communications, Top Paper Competition, History Division, Student Category, 2015 for the paper, “A Strong Sense of Outrage: Stan Strachan, The National Thrift News and The Savings and Loan Crisis.” Paper to be presented at AEJMC national conference, August 2015, San Francisco.


University of Maryland Graduate School, Summer Research Fellowship. A $5,000 fellowship to conduct doctoral dissertation research. April, 2015.

Professor Thomas J. Aylward Scholarship. A $1,000 scholarship awarded to top Philip Merrill College doctoral students. April 2015.


Reynolds Visiting Professor. One of four journalists picked for business journalism education program under a grant from the Donald W. Reynolds National Center for Business Journalism, Phoenix, Ariz. January 2012.

Business Writer In Residence, University of Wisconsin at Madison. Oct. 1999