Public games and other participatory radio formats

| September 14, 2020

Download this story

This week in our Spotlight section, we share the story of Radio Palabre and their Best Husband Contest. This was a public game organized by Farm Radio International as a way to increase awareness about men’s role in maternal, newborn, and infant health. Public games also make for interesting radio.

A jeu public or public game is an event that brings together the whole community to discuss an important issue. The idea originated in Francophone West Africa, and is extremely popular in Burkina Faso. In some cases, a radio station broadcasts live from the event. More often, the station records the event, then edits and plays it later as a special program. Sometimes, the station breaks down the recorded event into shorter segments and airs them on different dates. The public game is an excellent approach for raising public awareness and mobilizing community members around a particular theme.

Learn more about organizing a public game in this Broadcaster how-to guide:

A radio quiz can also be very entertaining, and is a great way to encourage audience participation.

This Broadcaster how-to guide shares information on how to run quizzes as part of a regular farmer or rural livelihoods program. The quiz can be conducted during the phone-in or phone-out segment of the program or recorded in the field and edited in studio. Broadcasters could also invite farmers into the studio to compete live on air.

Forum theatre is another interesting, interactive radio format. It encourages direct audience participation and can empower marginalized groups by rehearsing creative, collaborative, and problem-solving scenes. It is a useful format for highlighting a variety of perspectives on important and engaging issues that can elicit a diversity of opinions.

Learn more about this format in our Broadcaster how-to guide: