Community radio Alfaz-e-Mewat FM 107.8 is a participating station in the STIP 2020 project by the Department of Science and Technology (DST), Govt. of India and CEMCA (Commonwealth Educational Media Centre for Asia). Twenty-five community radio stations across India have been involved in the grassroots-level initiative “Thoughts for India” to collect voices for the formulation of the 2020 Science Technology and Innovation Policy of the country.
The Science, Technology and Innovation Policy, 2020 (STIP2020) formulation process is being facilitated jointly by the Office of the Principal Scientific Adviser to the Government of India and the Department of Science and Technology. This is one of the most significant events amidst many important changes in the past decade that have necessitated the formulation of a new outlook and strategy for Science, Technology, and Innovation (STI).
The two-month project beginning August 1, 2020, is looking at how people perceive the ways science has transformed their lives and in which sector they expect the new science policy to focus on through various research tools in addition to radio broadcasts. The project is also surveying people in the coverage area of the radio station, conducting focused group discussions, and collecting audio feedback from listeners. The outreach through community radios falls under Track one of the four interconnected tracks envisioned to formulate the STIP 2020 to create a repository of public voices to act as a guiding force for the drafting process.
“It is a welcoming step from the department of science and technology to reach out to the people at the last mile to gather ideas and information that may reflect in STIP 2020 in some way; and community radio is a proven participatory method to connect with the unreached segment of the population. We hope this effort toward policy formation reaps the desired results,” shares Pooja O. Murada, representative, Community Radio Alfaz-e-Mewat and director Communications at S M Sehgal Foundation.
Community radio Alfaz-e-Mewat is broadcasting the content shared by DST twice at 11:35 a.m. and 09:00 p.m. daily. The plan is to reach out to community members from different walks of life and have their voices included in the policy-drafting process.
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