November 12, 2012
Presented in connection with the Public Radio Super Regional Meeting
Hosted at the Downtown Development Center with support from WWNO
New Orleans, LA
The first “Public Radio Super-Regional” meeting, which brought together members of all four regional public radio organizations that represent stations’ interests to NPR and CPB, was the most important event in the first year of the Futures Forums.
The session audience was, by our standards, large and influential, with more than 200 station general managers/CEOs in attendance. The topic — the pace of change within public media — was selected in partnership with the four public radio regional organizations.*
Interest generated by our presentation was stronger than anything we had experienced: Powerpoint slides from this session were downloaded more than 350 times in the first month after the meeting.
Our research was based on 30 interviews conducted with station executives and supplemented by a survey of another 70 stations. The results confirmed several widely held and strategically important views about the emergence of public radio in the last decade, such as:
Our research found that the cohort of stations known as “system leaders” share the following characteristics:
Stations that exhibited this set of characteristics often entered a virtuous cycle of accelerated financial growth fueled, in part, by expanding major gifts and foundation revenues which were invested in local news and digital service expansion.
*Public Radio’s Regional Organizations are: Eastern Regional Public Media (ERPM), Public Radio in Mid-America (PRIMA), Western States Public Radio (WSPR), and California Public Radio
Size and Scale (Draft paper for discussion on the impact of radio station revenue volume on stations’ ability to take on current-era challenges)
by Mark Fuerst
Unpublished | August 2012
Radio g.m.’s adapt business models for newsgathering
Analysis by Mark Fuerst
Published in Current | December 4, 2012
In alphabetical order
Mark Fuerst, Director of Public Media Futures Forums, Current
Richard Tait, RH Tait Associates
Copyright 2012 American University