CBF receives update on Monash University study

March 6, 2024

The Monash Community Music Radio project (2023-2025) is a study of Australian community radio’s contribution to the Australian music and creative industries.

Led by researchers from Monash and Griffith universities in partnership with the CBF, Community Broadcasting Association of Australia (CBAA), the Australia Council for the Arts and APRA AMCOS, the Australian Research Council (ARC) awarded $218,000 to Monash University for the study.

The project’s core aims are to:

  • To map and assess the impact of community music radio.
  • Establish a database of the economic and sociocultural contributions of community music radio.
  • Assess the role of community music stations in the discoverability and visibility of Australian music on global digital platforms.
  • Produce a series of community music radio station and music artist case studies of diverse music genres and locations.
  • Initial construction of a nationwide database and reports to inform industry and government policies.

At a recent presentation to update partners on the progress of the project, a four-stage approach to the research was outlined:

  1. Data (CBAA Listener Surveys; Amrap surveys: other CBF, CBAA data)
  2. Case Study Stations (station interviews; listener focus group interviews; resources mapping)
  3. Artist Case Studies (career pathways, impact, podcasts)
  4. Economic and Sociocultural Contribution (measuring inputs, activities, outputs, outcomes and impacts)

Monash researcher Associate Professor Shane Homan believes the sector is long overdue for examination of its links for and to Australian music.

“This funding provides for the first time the opportunity to dig deep into how community stations operate across different music genres and local contexts that can in turn provide a national picture.”

Griffith University’s researcher Professor Susan Forde says the project is a great opportunity to understand the full ecology of the Australian music industry and their audiences.

“We’ll be looking at opportunities provided to musicians and artists by small, local community radio outlets right through to the ways that the industry can interact with major global streaming platforms. The inclusion of First Nations music and musicians in this project is particularly important and has allowed us to offer research opportunities for early career Indigenous researchers.”

The project will also include LGBTQI+ and non-binary artists and programmers to capture the diversity of Australian music.

The CBF is proud to partner on this project which will provide important insights into how community radio has contributed to the Australian music industry. Our CEO, Jo Curtin, says this research will help inform the CBF’s future grant making for the sector.

“Community radio has played a hugely significant role for decades, broadcasting and promoting Australian music to listeners around the country. Having a deeper understanding of the positive cultural, social and economic contribution of music radio will be invaluable in our role funding a thriving and resilient sector.”