Elizabeth is a dual degree M.A. candidate in Latin American Studies and MSCRP at UNM. This research was made possible in part by funding from the Latin American & Iberian Institute and Tinker Foundation Field Research Grant (FRG). For more information about the FRG, visit the LAII website.
Radio Ixchel, Sam Pango, Guatemala
This summer my thesis research had me travelling though the Sierra Madre Mountains in Guatemala to conduct field research on my Master’s thesis on community radio and international development. While weaving through the Highlands to various research sites on the legendary camionetas (local buses), I had three goals in mind: (1) to learn how local community development in the Guatemalan Highlands is in part facilitated through the international NGO, Cultural Survival’s Community Radio Project; (2) to understand how local issues of indigenous rights and development inform the international development goals of Cultural Survival; and (3) to observe how community radio is used as a tool in local development efforts. I approached the democratization of media, indigenous rights, alternative community-based planning, and international development using three field methodologies: (1) interviewing community radio volunteers and Cultural Survival’s Radio Project Coordinators; (2) observing community radio workshops that Cultural Survival attended; (3) listening to community radio broadcasts.