Other Projects in Brief



On behalf of Open Society Institute for East Africa (OSIEA), DRP conducted research into the status of community radio in Kenya.

The research followed the political violence that accompanied the disputed presidential elections of 2007/8. Hundreds of people died in the violence; many thousands were displaced after their homes and villages were attacked.

Radio stations, especially small local and independent stations, were accused of adding to the violence through fomenting ethnic prejudice and political division on air. Our research aimed to explore the involvement of stations and to recommend ways of strengthening stations so that they would be able to withstand pressure to take sides during political and ethnic conflict in future.

OSIEA, based in Nairobi, Kenya, is part of the Soros Foundations’ Network, which provides funding and other development support for media across the world. OSIEA is currently developing a community radio support program, based on our recommendations.

Our research found that there is widespread confusion in Kenya about what constitutes community radio. There are a host of small, commercial private stations broadcasting in regional and local languages that are widely referred to as “community radio”. However, a closer looks shows that there are only about 12 community radio stations in Kenya – that is, stations owned by communities rather than individuals or companies, and holding community radio licenses. Far from adding to the violence, these stations played a peacekeeping role. Local radio did play a role in fuelling the violence, but only a few, and all of them were small commercial stations.

DRP’s report, titled Poised to Grow: Community Radio in Kenya in 2009, was written by Jean Fairbairn, an independent contractor, and Doreen Rukaria, then coordinator of the Kenya Community Media Network, and now coordinator of the new Community Radio Association of Kenya (CRAK). The report was presented in 2010, and OSIEA will launch a community radio support program, based on recommendations, in 2011. 


Malawi and Zambia:

“The partnership we have with DRP {in 2009} has helped a lot in increasing listenership and especially with the use of FrontlineSMS and that the programmes of Zachilengedwe Tsogolo Lathu, (Our Environment, Our Future) centered much on the alternative source of energy. 

Community Events also contributed a lot to the success and we are receiving a lot of request from communities to teach them on how they can make ceramic wood saving stoves. 

This has happened because of the training the environmental reporters had when the project was starting and again in course of implementation. The project has also strengthened the partnership we have with other organization like Total Land Care and the District forest office.” 

As told by: Pilirani - Former Chimutu Station Supervisor at Mudziwathu Community Radio in Mchinji, Malawi



As part of the World Bank’s Civic Engagement Strategy in Mongolia to increase opportunities for citizen participation and encourage social accountability, DRP completed a mission in Mongolia in April 2005 to examine how community radio might be used to achieve these objectives.

Mongolia’s six community radio stations form the only independent radio news sources in Mongolia and are among only a few independent media in the country. Working closely with national and international NGOs also concerned with media development in Mongolia, DRP’s mission assessed the current state of community radio development in Mongolia, evaluated opportunities for growth in this sector, and determined prospective partnerships between the Bank and other actors to achieve increased participation and better penetration of Bank programs.



The Radio of Our City Project was part of a larger capacity building program that aimed to deepen commercial radio managers’ understanding about social impact and community service-oriented programming. The project comprised four parts:

  1. A competition which aimed to get stations to develop concepts for Radio of Our City projects and programming. Key criteria for selection of winning concepts were the extent and depth of citizens’ engagement and positive, lasting impact of the project for listeners.

  2. A three-day seminar in Moscow from February 16 – 18, 2009, including sessions on community engagement, mission-driven programming, community mapping, audience research methodologies, and different models of income generation. At the seminar, eight winning Radio of Our City concepts were selected. The prize was a study tour to the USA for a representative from each of the winning stations.

  3. A study tour to the USA in April, organised by Developing Radio Partners, which took place from May 16 – 22, 2009. 

  4. A final, debriefing seminar during the FNR/Radio Corps annual VMESTE Radio Festival in Moscow, on June 27, 2009, and presentation of certificates to the Radio of Our City competition winners.

Developing Radio Partners
910 17th Street, NW - 7th Floor
Washington, DC 20006
Email: info@developingradio.org
  • Facebook Social Icon
  • Twitter Social Icon
  • YouTube Social  Icon

© 2019 By Developing Radio Partners