Strengthening the management skills of media managers

In sub-Saharan Africa, community radio stations have become an essential means of informing people about the problems surrounding the economy, local governance, education and health, and of getting them to engage with those problems. If community radio stations are going to remain independent and sustainable, managers at these stations must be trained to cope with the economic, organisational and strategic matters that they encounter every day.


November 2020 – April 2022

Total budget


Democratic governance Digital The French-speaking world

Kalan* Academy is a project led by the Centre Solidarité et Initiatives pour le Développement du Bénin (CSID-Benin) [Beninese Solidarity and Initiatives for Development Centre] and supported by CFI through a grant agreement. Launched in Autumn 2020, this project aims to create a remote media management training platform for community radio stations operating in sub-Saharan Africa. There are thousands of these stations throughout Africa and they play a key role in encouraging local communities to engage in civic matters. However, the tools they need to remain financially viable are highly specific and tend to be somewhat absent from journalism school curricula.

Kalan Academy intends to fill the void left by African journalism schools that sometimes offer media management courses which are geared towards the economic and organisational challenges faced by the mainstream media but which fail to consider the very specific nature of local media. »
Sahadou Zato Ali, educational coordinator on the Kalan Academy platform

An online training resource for managers

In 2020, CSID-Benin’s academic team developed an initial version of the platform with the help of an African service provider selected via a competitive bidding process. This team also produced the first training modules to be used for remote learning purposes. These modules combine classroom sessions taught via video conferences, practical exercises to be completed online and simulation videos performed by professional actors. 

The Kalan Academy platform offers an innovative and entirely African solution to respond to the challenges of local media sustainability and governance. It reduces the carbon footprint of upskilling programmes, but also ensures that media managers can receive training no matter what travel restrictions they face (conflict zones, health crises, etc.).

* Kalan means “training” in Bambara and Dyula, two West African languages.

More projects carried out in 2020