Judges and our Judging process

As we get close to the opening of our nominations I want to discuss our Judges and our Judging process, this is because we want the awards to be as open and as fair as possible for those submitting nominations to be able to understand what we are trying to achieve with our awards.

We are aiming for a robust judge led process, where groups of judges will get the opportunity to listen, read and reflect on the nominations submitted for each category. The highest rated nominations in each category will be considered further until the submissions are narrowed down to the final 5 nominations. These final 5 shortlisted nominations for each category will be announced prior to the ceremony event.

On the night of the awards ceremony we will announce the top three submissions within each category, which will be awarded Gold, Silver or Bronze. After the awards we hope to send judges feedback to all those that have submitted nominations.

We feel that  the awards ceremony is an opportunity to recognise hard work and talent across all stations. We aim for the event to be a collaborative occasion, for community radio station staff and volunteers from across the country to acknowledge the commitment that goes into producing community focussed and original content every day. The awards will strive to celebrate and promote the fantastic quality and diversity of community radio output. We hope to also highlight the important  work that reaches beyond the radio studio directly into the community it serves, the type of interaction that often makes a community radio station the beating heart of a community.

For our Judges we are looking for a wide selection of individuals who will be drawn from Community Radio, Commercial Radio and the BBC as well as associated companies and organisations, including other third sector and associated organisations. We want to develop judging groups that contain a balance of judges from all these areas so that the judging is as detailed and fair as possible.

All judges will be asked what involvement past or present they have with community radio stations,  to enable us to try to eliminate bias from certain judging groups, in essence no judge should be able to judge in a group where they have a connection to a nominated station. This means we are able to accept judges who come directly from the Community Radio sector without them having to be concerned about the effect this may have on their own stations submissions.

Our judges will receive guidance on the criteria for judging each submission this is because we want judges to understand the uniqueness of Community Radio and how it is different to other radio sectors. We want to remind the judges that we do not encourage the judges to compare the submissions against other radio sectors. It is community radios distinctiveness  that truly makes it special and why it has its own place in the wide and diverse media landscape.

Martin Steers
Community Radio Awards