Research shapes our decision-making and helps to keep us informed about what media organisations are doing, the motivations of listeners and how community media is engaging their audiences.

Partnering on research projects

Our knowledge about the sector and its long history, combined with data, is an invaluable source of information for researchers. This research in turn, helps to inform our decision-making and build resilience in community broadcasting.

Community Music Radio: Building the Music-Media Ecosystem project

In early 2022, Monash University was awarded funding by the Australian Research Council (ARC) to conduct a three-year study of Australian community radio’s contribution to the Australian music and creative industries. This project aims to understand the economic and socio-cultural contributions of community radio and how stations help make Australian music more visible and discoverable on global digital platforms. The project is being led by researchers from Monash and Griffith universities in partnership with our organisation, the CBAA, the Australia Council for the Arts and APRA AMCOS.

Monash University logoGriffith University logo

Community Broadcasting Foundation in white writing on black background beside green square with sound waves   CBAA logo      Apra Amcos logo

Partnership with Lowitja Institute and First Nations  Media Australia

In partnership with the Lowitja Institute, we have supported First Nations Media Australia (FNMA) to contribute to the Closing the Gap strategy. The project examined First Nations’ representation in media and identified opportunities that would help to demonstrate its value and impact.

Lowitja Institute logo     First Nations Media Australia logo

Audience research

Community radio is an important part of Australian culture with nearly five million Australians* tuning in every week.

We gain invaluable industry insight into the listening habits of Australians by funding research including the National Listener Survey. This Australia-wide research (managed by the CBAA) engages 16,000 people, highlighting trends, listener behaviour and the tangible difference community radio makes in the community. View the latest research  conducted by McNair yellowSquares (click to enlarge or visit the National Listener Survey for an interactive version).

*CBAA Community Radio Listener Survey, 2022.

Summary of audience reach community radio is 23% of overall listening. Almost evenly split male/female/gender diverse and closely between age groups with largest percentage 25-39years. Time spent listening to community radio is 14.5hrs a week.

Audience details 85% find quite or very valuable 42% listen to community/commercial/ABC/SBS largest audiences 5am-7pm and appreciate for local information, voices, news and music


Participation studies

In 2022, the CBAA conducted the biggest ever Sector Participation Study surveying paid employees and volunteers in community broadcasting. With over 1,700 responses, this study provides insights into the shape of the sector and allows us to understand the social value of the sector for participants and listeners.

We are committed to supporting research focused on Australian community media to ensure we stay connected with our evolving industry. View the CBF Support for Research Policy.