Judith Neilson (Image: JNI)
Judith Neilson (Image: JNI)

Billionaire philanthropist Judith Neilson has no intention of closing her eponymous $100 million journalism and ideas institute despite reports that she believes money flowing into journalism from Facebook and Google has placed the industry on a sounder financial footing.

The Judith Neilson Institute for Journalism and Ideas has been rocked by mass board resignations which, insiders say, were in protest against plans to remove its executive director, Mark Ryan, a former adviser to Paul Keating.

Former NSW chief justice James Spigelman, journalist Paul Kelly from The Australian, Free TV CEO Bridget Fair and CEO of the Peter MacCallum Cancer Foundation Kate Torney all resigned last week. None has elaborated on their decision.