Podcasting Fights Global Poverty
In a rapidly changing society with the constant technological revolution, humanitarian organizations have to think outside the box in their strategies for community outreach, education and goal achievement. Another outcome of this continually evolving technology accompanies the rise of the Internet as a new form of news media: podcasting. Today, podcasting fights global poverty in myriad ways.

Podcasting to Fight Global Poverty

Podcasts have become a part of communication culture importantly. They cover topics from niche series to major global issues, and they can reach a wide variety of consumers in a fast-paced world. Whether completing a train commute, taking a car ride or cooking dinner, podcasting fills the need for auditory media in a way that exposes significant issues and inspires insightful conversations.

Podcasts are an effective method of spreading information about international issues like global poverty. Take “Poverty Unpacked,” for example, a podcast led by Keetie Reolen. Reolen is a Research Fellow with the Institute for Developmental Studies in the United Kingdom. She uses this medium as a way to archive her research and educate listeners about the intricacies of global poverty. She converses with leaders in this field to offer thoughts on global poverty that are otherwise underrepresented in traditional media.

In one recent episode of “Poverty Unpacked,” Reolen interviewed the author of “The Shame Game,” Mary O’Hara, about the stigmatization of poverty and those experiencing it. In another, she talks with Andrew Fischer, an Associate Professor at the Institute of Social Studies in the Netherlands, about reducing poverty on an international stage. Her survey of experts highlights innovative approaches and new directions for humanitarian organizations and governments to take when tackling this issue. These podcasts also normalize the practice of having intellectual conversations about a topic so many people know on the surface level, but many never engage with on a deeper level.

Support from International Organizations

On the other end of the spectrum, globally renowned groups like the World Bank host podcasts to highlight the organization’s work as well as that of experts to tackle poverty. The World Bank has short-form podcasts, allowing the group to explore a variety of subtopics under the umbrella of global poverty podcasts. A multi-episode special entitled “Afronomics,” for example analyzes the World Bank’s efforts in Africa through testimonies from multiple authorities. Another podcast, “Water World,” provides a detailed rundown of the World Bank’s Water Scarce Cities project.

Inspiring Listeners to Create Change

Podcasting fights global poverty by providing a creative opportunity to educate the public in a way that connects with listeners beyond the statistics. Innovation, technology and research in this field should have a platform for connecting with the public, not just other researchers. Educating people in this intimate way will allow them to not only better understand global poverty, but also equip them to incite positive change.

– Riya Kohli
Photo: Flickr