Edgard Patricio

Ashoka Fellow
Brazil,
Fellow Since 2010

Citation

This profile was prepared when Edgard Patricio was elected to the Ashoka Fellowship in 2010.
The New Idea
Edgard is transforming rural populations from passive audiences of content to producers of content pertinent to their daily lives, empowering communities to become agents of their own development. In order to enable the production and dissemination of locally relevant information, Edgard creates learning spaces in schools, community centers, and public spaces to discuss how to conduct rural life and improve living conditions. The content that emerges is combined with formal knowledge and then synthesized to produce radio programs that are broadcast through existing radio stations. The opportunity for community members to hear their own voices on public radio allows them to understand and value their role as active knowledge producers and citizens. It strengthens their identity and ultimately contributes to a better quality of life.

Recognizing the influence of radio in rural settings and the power of the Internet, Edgard combines old and new technologies to improve communities’ living conditions. His initiative is based on the principle that each community is capable of choosing its own priorities, identifying its existing assets, and when necessary, searching for external assistance to achieve its goals. Through Catavento and the Broadcasters Network—organizations he founded—Edgard gives communities the opportunity to question stereotypes and create locally relevant information. As a result, participants begin to value their collective knowledge. Each radio program produced by Catavento spreads local content about ongoing issues pertinent to rural communities’ development through the Network using commercial, community and school radios, as well as the Internet and text messaging. By incorporating new technologies, such as podcasts and blogs, Edgard is not only enabling the collaborative construction of knowledge, but empowering people to access information.
The Problem
The Strategy
The Person

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