Feb 13- Celebrating a Century of Radio

2/5 Min ⏰ 

World Radio Day on February 13, 2024, it’s a momentous occasion to celebrate another year and mark a significant milestone: over a century of radio informing, entertaining, and educating the world. Under the support of UNESCO, and with a heartfelt message from Director-General Ms. Audrey Azoulay, this year’s theme casts a wide beam over radio’s storied past, its vital present, and the promising future that lies ahead.

Radio has surpassed the remarkable 100-year mark, a testament to its resilience, adaptability, and the deep connection it has forged with listeners worldwide. Despite facing formidable challenges such as digital competition, generational divides, and economic pressures, radio’s relevance has not waned. Its unique ability to reach across barriers, serve as a lifeline during emergencies, and connect communities keeps it at the forefront of global media.

This year, UNESCO invites the radio industry, encompassing commercial, public, and non-profit sectors, to join in a global celebration. It’s a call to honor radio’s indelible impact on society—through news, drama, music, sports, and more—and its role as a democratic tool fostering connectedness and free speech.

Radio’s power lies in its simplicity and accessibility. It serves as a critical public safety net during crises, offering a free and portable means of communication. Moreover, it plays a vital role in democratizing information, reaching underserved populations, and providing a platform for diverse voices to be heard. These attributes underscore radio’s ongoing utility and its importance as a medium that transcends technological trends.

World Radio Day is not just a celebration but an opportunity for radio stations worldwide to connect, share experiences, and broadcast collectively. It highlights radio’s incredible journey from its inception to becoming a major mass communications medium that continues to evolve while retaining its essence. The day also serves as a reminder of radio’s capacity to bring joy, foster freedom of expression, and disseminate knowledge.

Established following a proposal by Spain and endorsed by UNESCO and the United Nations General Assembly, World Radio Day has been celebrated annually on February 13 since 2013. It originated from a collective desire to acknowledge radio’s contribution to humanity, promoting the UN Charter’s goals and human development. Over the years, it has become a platform for improving professional standards, embracing technological advancements, and ensuring radio’s sustainability through innovative funding and programming models.

Radio’s journey through the past century is a narrative of innovation, resilience, and the unyielding power of human communication. As we look forward to the next hundred years, the future of radio is as dynamic and promising as its past. The celebration of World Radio Day 2024 is not just about looking back with pride but also forward with anticipation to the new chapters that radio will write in the annals of global media.

Let us all tune in, celebrate, and continue to support this indispensable medium that, despite the advent of the digital age, remains at the heart of our collective experience. Here’s to radio—a century and beyond of informing, entertaining, and educating the world.



By: Sophia Pouya,

Roya Institute intern