Community Radio in Ireland has a collective weekly reach of 307,465 adults and 6 out of 10 people surveyed value its impact on their community very highly, according to the findings of the first ever independent survey on Community Radio in Ireland, which was launched earlier today in a packed conference room at Buswell's Hotel, Dublin by Tina Heffernan, the Chairperson of the coordinating committee of Craol, the Community Radio Forum of Ireland.
The survey was independently carried out by RedC, for their client, Craol, and was funded by the Broadcasting Authority of Ireland (BAI)
Launching the results, Ms. Heffernan said , "We carried out this survey because we wanted to find out the impact that Community Radio has on the communities that we serve. This is particularly relevant today with the issue of the diversity in media ownership to the fore, and community radio helps to deliver this diversity, empowering communities nationwide in 24 fully licensed stations every day."
Speaking at the event Stephanie Comey of the BAI said: “The BAI welcomes the publication of this research. The Community Broadcasting Support Scheme is designed to provide mechanisms by which stations and the sector collectively can examine and evaluate their relationship with their intended audiences.”
The research, collected through 504 face to face interviews conducted at 23 sample points around the country where Community Radio is available, collected data on a range of issues including the awareness of, value of and the opportunities offered by Community Radio in Ireland. Respondents highlighted the important part that Community Radio plays in terms of Community Development and the sharing of knowledge and experience.
The survey also looked at Community Radio and its place within the wider Irish media landscape and collected data about how and when people engage with Community Radio.The depth and breadth of the research has yielded rich and often surprising results that will inform not just community radio activities but the overall media landscape in Ireland.
Participants were asked a series of questions about their awareness of, engagement with, understanding of and participation in community radio. They were also questioned on their listening habits, their engagement with the Internet, community involvement and attitudes to programming and Irish music on radio.
Community Radio in Ireland has a collective weekly reach of 307,465 or 34% of its total potentialaudience of 904,310 adults. To put this in perspective, this is greater than the combined population of counties Waterford, Kilkenny, Carlow and Longford (302,569 Census 2011).
- 67% of all adults surveyed are aware that a Community Radio Station exists in their area, while 78% of those who were aware of a community radio station knew that the station was in fact a community station.
- 1 in 4 of all adults in the catchment are spontaneously aware that “Community Radio stations not-for-profit” and 21% know that “anyone from the community can get involved”.
- 1 in 4 adults surveyed are interested in getting involved in Community Radio - this is highest amongst those under 25 years & in student catchments.
- 6 in 10 of all survey respondents in the catchment attributed a very high value rating (8-10) to Community Radio, when asked specifically about the impact of Community Radio on your community/area. The high value rating is even greater (71%) among current listeners to Community Radio.
- Over 1 in 4 adults surveyed are involved in a community organisation (rising to 53% of those living in rural areas and over 1 in 10 are on the organisation’s committee).
- 30% of respondents have listened to any streamed or online radio programme on the internet. 17% of 18 - 24 year olds have downloaded a radio podcast.
- 80% of those adults surveyed, with a Facebook account, access it daily.
In attendance were a number of TDs, representatives from the Craol Coordinating Committee, member stations and other media. Also speaking at the launch were Niamh Farren of Aontas, the Irish National Adult Learning Organisation, and Diarmuid McIntyre of Grey Heron Media, who took questions from the floor on the detail of the survey results.
The survey was conducted by RED C/Grey Heron Media on behalf of Craol with funding received from the Broadcast Authority of Ireland (BAI) Community Broadcasting Support Scheme.
The full Public Summary of Results can be downloaded here.
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