Archives for community radio


Minority communities, of whatever kind - cultural, religious, linguistic, ethnic or gender-based - have found in community radio an important platform for expression of their cultural identity. But the informal, often ephemeral, context of programming means that the actual record of a community's broadcasting is often incomplete. As community radio has come of age some archives of   programming and station materials have been established so that documents and programmes are stored for the future and the archive becomes both a repository and a maker of cultural memory (Prieto Blanco, Schuppert, and Lange 2015)

 Digitalization has contributed to new forms of open access, online and collaborative archives. This has meant that there can be increased access to sonic pasts that can function to enable participation and creative engagement with these pasts through encouragement of active and `public´ listening (Lacey 2013).

Community radio producers have become archivists (often through keeping their own personal collections of cherished programmes). Where these archives become more public for example the Fem FM archive ( or the Radio CORAX’s Cultural Broadcasting Archive ( a characteristic of the sector these archives often aim from the outset to be participatory. For researchers this is opening up new areas of study and opening up areas of co-production and participatory research to a wider range of people and partnerships.

In TRE IP5/6 we have been exploring archives and archiving practices of women's, feminist and LGBT radio and also identifying how sound art has been archived and re-circulated through stations such as Resonance FM (London).    A parallel project which shares many of our interests is the CAPTCHA project which has been working in partnership with community radio stations and projects in Germany, Ireland, Austria and Hungary. Their aim is  “ to empower community media, and the media producers working there, to increase the accessibility of their programs, by promoting the exchange of content and exploring sharing platforms, tackling the economic, technical and legal issues they face, and increasing awareness and practical know-how about the digital tools that are available now to facilitate collaboration”