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Exploring Tribal Representation across American Indian-produced radio in US Reservation and Urban Contexts

Project description

The role of radio on protecting rights of indigenous peoples

Indigenous peoples make up 5 % of the world’s population but comprise 15 % of the world’s poor. In many parts of the world, they are largely marginalised, suffering from a history of discrimination and exclusion. Focussing on the American Indian community, the EU-funded TRR project will explore how community radio practices and structures can facilitate meaningful self-representation. The aim is to understand the role that indigenous radio stations can play as regards communication strategies. Examples of good practice will be shared with tribal communities. The results will be valuable for the EU, where indigenous communities are under-represented in mainstream media.


This comparative research into tribal radio representation identifies and analyses indigenous communication strategies in American Indian community radio to explore how community radio practices and structures can facilitate meaningful self-representation in contexts where indigenous groups are marginalised. Through this analysis, this research seeks to update understanding of ways in which indigenous radio stations avail of and deploy emergent material developments, including podcasting and streaming technologies alongside ‘low power’ broadcasting.

Drawing on the inclusive principles of Participatory Action Research (Tacchi et al 2003), research findings will be discussed on-site with tribal communities to share examples of good practice. This collaborative approach will enable tribal members to avail of findings and to provide input into research outcomes in a reciprocal process. Proposed research outputs will span academic, public, and indigenous media contexts in order to widen the benefits of this research for media and sociology scholars, indigenous practitioners, and policymakers. The research focus on indigenous communication strategies is of direct value for EU cultural and social contexts, in which established indigenous communities continue to be significantly under-represented in much of Europe’s mainstream media.



Net EU contribution
€ 189 099,84
University road
LE1 7RH Leicester
United Kingdom

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East Midlands (England) Leicestershire, Rutland and Northamptonshire Leicester
Activity type
Higher or Secondary Education Establishments
Other funding
€ 0,00

Partners (1)