Democratic public life only thrives where institutions enable citizens to debate matters of public importance.

For over a decade TRAC FM has engaged radio listeners throughout East Africa in an informed and interactive debate on public services, social dilemmas and other matters of public importance.

TRAC FM informs and engages citizens in a wide range of important topics and promotes public debate through a combination of radio, mobile, print, graphic design and online media. The easy-to-use TRAC FM software collects opinions via SMS during interactive radio talk-shows, and presents results in real-time online visualizations. Through random sampling and demographic analysis, TRAC FM's data is used in advocacy reports and lobby campaigns to represent citizens' voices.

How it works
  • TRAC FM combines multiple media platforms (Radio, Mobile, Print, graphic design, and online media) to create a new approach to public engagement and monitoring of public services.

  • The TRAC FM software is used to hold surveys during radio talk-shows, allowing listeners to respond via SMS.

  • The survey questions focus on pressing social challenges within communities. 

  • Incoming SMS responses are collected and processed into real-time online data visualizations, depicting poll results and additional (anonymized) data, like the districts and gender of respondents.

  • The visualizations are interpreted by TRAC FM and social development partners and used by the radio talk-show host to present to expert guests in the studio. Guests discuss the results and link them to public service delivery and government policies.

  • The data is processed into comprehensible infographics (graphs, maps, etc.) and used for advocacy, lobbying, and representation of the citizens' voice.
  • TRAC FM uses random sampling, telephone interviews and demographic data to better understand the representativeness of its data, ensuring that for instance the opinions and experiences of women are equally considered compared to men. 

  • TRAC FM is using AI for natural language processing, personalising feedback, sentiment analysis and enhancing data visualisation to better understand and respond to the needs and desires of communities.

TRAC FM provides an innovative and impactful solution to enhance democratic public life. TRAC FM empowers citizens to engage in high frequency monitoring of public services and political debates, giving them a voice and a platform to advocate for their needs and rights. Together with its partners, TRA FM builds a more informed, engaged, and empowered citizenry, making a tangible difference in their communities and in the wider world.

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