Highlights from our Broadcaster resources survey

February 23, 2019
A translation for this article is available in French

A few months ago, we asked our broadcasting partners to fill out an online survey about our radio resources, including Barza Wire and our Farm Radio Resource Pack items: interview scripts, drama scripts, and backgrounders. The survey also asked about our training resources: Broadcaster how-to guides, e-discussions, and online learning modules. (To learn more about these resources, read our Guide to Resources, available at www.farmradio.fm.)

We heard from more than 220 broadcasters across Africa, including presenters, hosts, reporters, station managers, directors, and CEOs working at community radio stations, private radio stations, religious stations, and public broadcasters.

More than 60% said they had used one of our resources in the last two or three months, and described how they used our resources in their radio program, either to prepare programs or to broadcast live on air.

We are happy that so many respondents find Barza Wire and our Farm Radio Resource Pack items to be useful resources for preparing their radio program. The majority of broadcasters told us that they use our resources because they provide good agricultural information and are good quality. We are proud that broadcasters say they trust the information in these resources. Many broadcasters also said they use our resources to prepare their radio program or to improve the quality of their program. For those who have not yet read our interview scripts, drama scripts, or backgrounders, go to: scripts.farmradio.fm.

About 85% of respondents said that they find Barza Wire a useful or very useful resource. We asked how readers are using our resources, and the most common answer was that they adapt our Farmer stories before presenting them on air (45%).

About 75% of respondents said they find our interview scripts to be useful or very useful. Respondents told us the variety of ways they use interview scripts. Half of the respondents said they either use the information in the script to draft interview questions, or they use the questions in the script as a model for their own interviews. Another 25% said they adapt the script before presenting it on air. Most respondents (50%) said that drama scripts provide inspiration for them to do a segment on the same or similar topic.

We asked broadcasters to tell us the most important topics to cover in future resources. For our information resources, the most popular topics included climate change, managing plant diseases and pests, and soil health or soil fertility. Human health and nutrition, as well as environmental issues and deforestation, were particularly popular among Francophone respondents.

We also asked what training topics broadcasters would like us to cover. Nearly half said they would like us to develop training materials on journalism skills, including interviewing, holding officials to account, journalistic standards, and others. Check out Barza Wire’s Resource section for some Broadcaster how-to guides on these topics. Broadcaster how-to guides were selected as our most popular training resource by 60% of respondents.

Finally, and most interestingly, we asked broadcasters about the major challenge they face in preparing their farmer program. Many mentioned that they lack equipment, revenue, or transportation to the field, which we expected. But the most common response from broadcasters was that they struggle to get subject-matter specialists to agree to be interviewed on the radio program. Many broadcasters also said that they have difficulty interviewing farmers, either because farmers are uncomfortable being interviewed, are too busy, or want to be paid for their time. We hope to develop training materials to make these areas of your work easier.

We would like to thank everyone who contributed their feedback to this survey. This information will help us to develop useful resources you can use to develop high quality radio programming.

We selected three winners of the $50 prize of mobile airtime. They are:

  • Emmanuel Asamoah of Radio1 in Ghana
  • Sebastian Zongo of RTB Gaoua in Burkina Faso

Joseph Robi of K.B.C Kisumu Kuria Service in Kenya