Once again we’re looking forward to attending one of the world’s key radio events, Radiodays Europe, which has started this week in Milan…

So why do we attend, and why does the Public Media Alliance talk so much about radio in a digitised, visual reality? Because it has the reach in places in the world with limited access to electricity and broadband; and it commands loyalty and long listening time in places saturated with digital media options.

This year’s event, themed ‘Passion Meets Progress’ will feature an overwhelming 50 sessions over 2½ days, and the following are topics that are particularly catching our ‘ear’ at the moment.

‘Loving the news – in new ways’ will be chaired by Danish and Italian talk show hosts to look at how news talk radio can be done differently. In Denmark the news drivetime talk show on Radio P3 attracts a sizeable young listenership because it has “signed a deal” with its audience never to tell a news story in the same way it would on the evening news. The UK’s LBC, a national talk and phone-in radio station, will be discussed in terms of its innovation around using politicians as presenters.

‘Radios of the world – unite!’ looks at a global pop-up 7-day radio project with the ambitious target of reaching as many of the world’s 7 billion people with the UN’s sustainable development goals. The session will hear from a public-private radio collaborative project in Finland to tackle loneliness, as well as a DJ competition called Radio Battle in Milan.

The intriguingly titled ‘Radio worth watching – the visualisation of digital radio’ will hear from a technology company that works with radio stations around the world to identify the songs they are airing live and play the corresponding music video in realtime. The session will discuss how this feature can drive social media engagement and digital revenue.

And ‘Mobile apps: more than just live radio’ promises to examine how the use of smartphone and tablet apps for radio goes beyond the delivery of a live stream. The session will include a representative from an Australian app and a speaker from digital developments in National Public Radio in the US, as well as others; all discussing how radio can be made immersive with apps and how to create true multiplatform content.

We’re also pleased to be supporting content developer Odette Campbell, as a travel bursar to this year’s Radiodays. She will be taking ideas back to her broadcaster in Grenada.

It’s not too late to register. And if you work for a PMA member, we can offer a free pass, but please get in touch with us urgently on rde@publicmediaalliance.org, but in any case, hope to see you there!

Visit the Radiodays Europe website