Gender stereotyping in radio programming: the case of Kenya Broadcasting Corporation

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This study was undertaken to investigate gender stereotyping in radio programming. It was carried out at the Kenya Broadcasting Corporation's headquarters (Broadcasting House) Nairobi. The study targeted KBC's English Service radio and radio Taifa, the Swahili service . The overall objective was to assess gender stereotyping in radio programmes at the Kenya Broadcasting Corporation specifically, to explore the nature of gender stereotyping on radio programmes and to examine the extent to which gender stereotyping affect the participation of men and women on radio programmes The study was guided by the social learning theory framework. Social learning theory, as developed by Albert Bandura is a general psychological model constructed to explain human behavior . This theory has been revised several times according to emerging research on gender and the media. The basic premise of social learning theory is that it approaches the explanation of human behavior in terms of a continuous, reciprocal interaction between cognitive, behavioral, and environmental determinants. This study was qualitative in nature and Content analysis was used to capture data relevant to the study. The study found out that there is gender stereotyping in radio programming in terms of themes used in the programmes and representation of both genders in the radio programmes. The study recommends that inter-disciplinary and multifaceted approaches towards improving this phenomenon by all media stakeholders interested in radio production. For instance, that KBC together with the ministry of Information and Communication and other Media stake holders should promote a gender mainstreamed media by sensitizing the public and all media practitioners about the importance of having a gender media reports, programmes and news. That besides courses in 'Gender and Development' that institutions such as the University of Nairobi offer, gender education should be offered at all levels of education so that the public is sensitized about the importance of gender parity in all sectors of development. This study is intended to add to existing literature on gender and media by other scholars in their effort towards creating balances and holistic approaches in media content, representation, services and management.

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