Is community radio in crisis in the Global North?: Lessons from Australia and the United States

Heather Anderson, Clemencia Rodríguez


This article explores the relevance of community radio in the Global North. Its significance in the Global South is uncontested (Gumucio Dagron, 2011; Rodríguez, 2011; Tacchi, 2002), however, in the Global North the role of community radio is not necessarily so clear. According to a 2017 study published by New York University, newer digital services are changing the way people listen to content, endangering the future of traditional radio (Miller, 2017). In this environment, the relevance of community radio can be put into question. Based on three different case studies – two in Australia and one in the US – our analysis explores community broadcasters’ strategic initiatives that, although different, intend to address specific communication needs in particular audiences. Our analysis suggests that the future of community radio in the Global North depends on its ability to detect needs and audiences at the hyper-local level.


Community media, community radio, Global North, sustainability, low-power FM radio

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