IPDC project priority: Community Media Development

The Malian media sector has undergone significant liberalization and development following the advent of democracy in 1991, with the country boasting some 241 private radio stations in 2010, according to a survey conducted by the media union, URTEL. However in spite of this apparently vibrant media environment, radio coverage is unevenly distributed across the country, with some communities continuing to be deprived of their right to access media and information sources. One such example is the rural commune of Sirakoro, which currently has no local radio, and only sporadic reception of...

Ghana's media landscape has witnessed a proliferation of media houses in the past twenty years, with the country now boasting over 130 FM radio stations, 16 TV channels and over 300 newspapers. Unfortunately however, many of these media houses are dominated by commercialism and political agendas, and tend to lack plurality in terms of content and orientation. Community radios by contrast, are not driven by profit and propaganda, and therefore have the potential to change lives through better and increased access to information of social significance. This project aims to provide the...

Although the war has now ended in many parts of the Democratic Republic of the Congo (DRC), the Sud-Kivu province continues to endure confrontation between rival groups, with women and young people among the main victims subjected to rape, mutilation and other acts of extreme violence. The absence of community media combined with the expense of other forms of media in this area mean that many of its largely impoverished inhabitants do not have access to information. This project aims to give a voice to these individuals by setting up a radio station capable of serving thirteen villages...

While community radios are protected by Uruguayan law, legislation is less supportive in Argentina, where community radios are not licensed in many provinces. Although freedom of press is formally guaranteed in both countries, media concentration and commercialization represent common threats to true participation and plurality. Vocational training for journalists and media professionals, especially in community radios, is crucial to consolidate democratization processes. This is especially important in the border region of Salto (Uruguay) and Concordia (Argentina), where strengthening of...

While established and secure, the media industries in Jamaica see little competition from new or different organizations in their markets. In addition, there are very few local and community mediums to address relevant issues not covered by the major outlets. This is especially true in rural areas, such as Spring Village in rural St. Catherine. Jamaica is also currently experiencing an exponential rise in its use of and reliance upon computers and the internet. This trend has correlated with the embracement of several types of digital media that have until recently been associated with...

The main problems confronting Haitian community media are a lack of equipment; high cost of internet access in Haiti; the poverty of the communities; insufficient problem of electricity supply, especially in remote areas; training of young coordinators; and the lack of legislation on community media. The development and strengthening of a network of community radios in remote regions of the country would contribute to the creation of a pluralist society and to fostering equal access to information. Such a network would therefore constitute an essential and effective strategy for achieving...

In Namibia rural dwellers in the remote areas do not have a platform to present their voices of concerns in a language they understand to those delegated with the responsibility to govern them. However, only few indigenous language newspapers currently exist in Namibia, such as the Caprivi Vision newspaper, which is published in English and Silozi and mainly distributed in the Caprivi region. The lack of training skills in news reporting, graphic design, marketing management and the lack of equipment such as printing facilities and computers still hinder the publication from improving its...

Media pluralism is a recent phenomenon in Chad, so much so that, as is often the case in countries in which pluralism of expression is embraced against a backdrop of poverty, the professional challenges are multiple. Today, however, the Chadian media can be viewed as a vanguard in pluralism of expression. Nevertheless, Chadian journalists are threatened and arrested in the exercise of their profession, and the media landscape is characterized by a lack of training among journalists, in writing for radio for production techniques, and among first-level maintenance technicians, as well as a...

Nkhata Bay (and Usisya, the location where the radio will be installed), are in a 'shadow area' of the communication and information services. Radio signals from the Malawi Broadcasting Corporation and other radio stations barely reach the district, and the citizens have now resorted to Tanzanian Radio stations, thus adversely affecting a sense of belonging to the Malawi nation. The lack of a relevant medium of communication has meant that the population cannot meaningfully participate in issues relating to the rule of law, human rights, development and decision-making. Rural women and...

Mass media in Puntland is not well supported due to lack of facilities and expertise. It is therefore absolutely necessary that a well-equipped university campus radio station be established to not only serve as a community broadcaster, but more importantly provide the much needed training in professional journalism and broadcasting. Through its programming, this radio will address local issues as well as those that affect the surrounding communities, such as internally displaced peoples, educate the population about the negative effects and dangers of piracy, female genital mutilation and...

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