Lyle Muller is executive director and editor of the Iowa Center for Public Affairs Journalism-Iowatch. Photo: IowaWatch reporter/digital analyst Lauren Mills (left) and co-founder Stephen Berry (rear, center) talk on the 'Your Town' program Aug. 19, 2014, with Jay Capron (right) on KXIC radio in Iowa City, IA, one of 21 radio stations airing the IowaWatch Connection program. In addition to airing the IowaWatch Connection on Sunday mornings, KXIC features IowaWatch on 'Your Town' the third Tuesday of every month. Credit: Lyle Muller/IowaWatch.
Iowa radio stations participating in a statewide, experimental Iowa Center for Public Affairs Journalism-IowaWatch weekly radio show say they like the show enough to tell others about it. That’s the indication from a recent survey to determine the show’s value to the stations.
“Well done,” one station program director wrote about the show, called “The IowaWatch Connection.” The show launched with the support of an INNovation Fund award from Knight Foundation and the Investigative News Network.
“I like having the show on air and would continue it as long as it’s produced,” wrote another.
The feedback is important as the almost 5-year-old Iowa Center, a nonprofit, nonpartisan investigative and explanatory news organization, tries to secure funding to continue the program.
“The IowaWatch Connection” launched on July 4, 2014, to spread the center’s in-depth reporting to a statewide radio audience. The show aired on 17 stations until Oct. 6, 2014, when an 18th station joined the network. By Nov. 20, 2014, 21 stations were airing the program – 20 in Iowa and one run by a high school radio station in suburban Chicago using the program for educational purposes. Fourteen of the 17 radio outlets airing the program during all or most of its duration responded to the survey.