World Radio Day: What Is It Really About?

World Radio Day is recognized on February 13, a date proclaimed by UNESCO to celebrate radio broadcast, improve international cooperation among radio broadcasters and to encourage people to establish and provide access to information through radio.

It is necessary to promote diversity and to build a more peaceful and inclusive world so this years theme of World Radio Day is “Radio and Diversity” which focuses on diversity and plurilingualism. It is an important medium to celebrate humanity in all its diversity and provides a platform for democratic discourse.

According to the UN Secretary-General Antonio Guterres, ‘Radio has a special value in every community as an easy to access source of media.’ The theme also highlights the fact that radio has its value in every religion, region, and language.

Despite being over 100 years old, the radio is one of the most popular ways to exchange information, provide social interchange, and educate people all over the world. It has been used to help people, including youth, to engage in discussions on topics that affect them. It can save lives during natural or human-made disasters, and it gives journalists a platform to report facts and tell their stories.

World Radio Day: History

The Executive Board of UNESCO recommended to the General Conference the proclamation of World Radio Day. In 2011, UNESCO carried out a wide consultation process and it is proposed by Spain. The project leader of the Academia Espanola de la Radio received support from several stakeholders, including major international broadcasters and broadcasting unions and associations.

In 1946, finally, the day of United Nations Radio was established that was proposed by the Director-General of UNESCO. The 36th session of UNESCO’s General Conference proclaimed 13 February as World Radio Day. The United Nations General Assembly formally endorsed UNESCO’s proclamation of World Radio Day on 14 January 2013. In the 67th session of the UN General Assembly, a resolution was adopted for proclaiming 13 February as World Radio Day.

Importance of Radio

Radio plays an important role in everyone’s life. It is more important for people who don’t know how to read and write. Radio also acts as a means of communication and makes people alert in emergencies. Radio plays an important role during rescue operations in case of any natural disaster.

World Radio Day: Celebrations In 2020

On World Radio Day 2020 (WRD 2020), UNESCO calls on radio stations to uphold diversity, both in their newsroom and on the airwaves.

This edition of WRD is divided into three main sub-themes:

  • Advocating for pluralism in radio, including a mix of public, private and community broadcasters;
  • Encouraging representation in the newsroom, with teams comprised of diverse society groups;
  • Promoting a diversity of editorial content and programme types reflecting the variety of the audiences.

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