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*(More sessions and speakers will be added in the final programme)

The new BBC radio director in conversation

Bob Shennan (Head of radio, BBC, UK)

BBC Radio is by many seen as the ‘gold standard’ of radio broadcasting, with a wide range of services reaching over 34 Million listeners across the UK each week. In the face of increasing digital competition and changing audience habits, the BBC aims to maintain its reach and share by focusing on high-quality, distinctive programming, creative partnerships and digital innovation. The newly appointed Director of Radio - Bob Shennan, appearing for the first time at Radiodays Europe, will set out his vision for the future of BBC Radio and discuss the challenges for the industry that lie ahead in conversation with John Myers, UK.

Facebook Audio

Guid Bülow (Strategic Partner Manager, Facebook, Germany)

Tech & social media giant Facebook has been making waves again a few weeks ago by announcing Facebook Audio - which will obviously be much more than just Facebook Live without pictures. Whatever you think of the blue giant, ignorance is certainly not a good idea - quite to the contrary: If a company like Facebook re-thinks whatever radio is, was or will be, then it’s time to prick up your ears.

For the first time at a radio conference, Facebook will present the concept and the background of Facebook Audio, share its reasoning and first findings, and shed a light on what they think will be the future of radio, audio or whatever it will be called then.

The suspense is killing me - and I love it

Sebastian Fitzek (Thriller author and radio creative, Germany)

If there is someone who knows how to have you glued to your seats, to a book, or a radio programme, then it’s Sebastian Fitzek. Learn storytelling from a true master: As a bestselling international thriller author, Sebastian Fitzek has sold over 8 million books, some have become major films already, and his current thriller is number one in the German paperback charts. In addition Sebastian started in radio and still today is a senior creative strategist and copywriter for one of the most successful stations in Germany, 104.6 RTL Berlin. In this rare masterclass session, he’ll share with you some of his secrets on storytelling and suspense.

First shut down of FM for DAB+. How did it go?

Marius Lillelien (Head of radio, NRK, Norway), Kenneth Andresen (Head of P4/MTG, Norway) and Jacquelin Bierhorst (Director, DAB+, Netherlands)

As the first country in the world to do so, Norway started turning off FM transmitters in parts of the country 68 days ago, replacing it with DAB+. The change has been criticized by politicians, radio management and the public. Were they right in their pessimism, or is DAB+ the best future for radio? And will Europe follow?

Extreme engagement: Your audience can do more than listen

Manoush Zamarodi (Journalist and podcast producer, WNYC, New York, USA)

Get ready to spark your own creative thinking about the role audio can play in your listener’s lives and how the audience can inform what you make. Manoush Zomorodi, host and managing editor of WNYC Studios’ “Note to Self” podcast, demonstrates how she’s experimented with interactive storytelling, crowdsourcing, and data collection to build a loyal, involved, and enthusiastic audience. Her engagement projects (Bored and Brilliant, Infomagical, The Privacy Paradox) take listeners on introspective journeys that provide value to the community as a whole. Manoush will explain how her work has broken new ground in understanding technology’s impact humanity while bringing her brand beyond podcasting and into other mediums as well.

Radiolab - Sound as editorial device

Dylan Keefe (Director of sound design, Radiolab, WNYC, USA)

Radiolab is considered as one the most creative radio shows and podcasts, using sound in new ways to underline the narrative. Dylan Keefe, Director of sound design, will discuss the use of sound design and scoring in narrative nonfiction including the ethical application of added sound, the development of thematic musical devices, and share the How and Why of making Radiolab using examples of ProTools sessions and contrasting early drafts with finished pieces.

Podcasting – where will it be in 2020?

Find out everything you need to know about the global podcast market and how advertisers are buying airtime in podcast to reach consumers. What’s the difference between successful radio and successful podcasts? Producers behind some of Europe's biggest independent podcasts will share their thoughts. And how are these podcasts made? What are the team's like, and how have they rocketed to the top of the iTunes chart? Speakers TBA 

Radio Game Changers – lessons from the best

Craig Bruce (Talent coach and consultant, Australia)

When you hear someone who is really good on the radio, do you ever wonder how they became so good?

Craig Bruce is one of Australia’s most respected talent coaches and has spent hours of one-on-one time with some of Australia’s and the UK’s best presenters in his ‘Game Changers’ podcast series. He now has a clear sense of what makes them tick and what the commonalities are in a successful career on the air. In this session he will highlight the ten key learnings that everyone working on the air, or managing talent should hear.

Shame – the teen monster hit

Håkon Moslet (Head of TV in NRK P3, Norway)

The public broadcaster in Norway has made a monster hit with teenagers. The series has gone from a much-loved secret to the internet's latest obsession in the course of just three seasons. "Shame" is a successful drama series that runs daily online, and weekly as a webcast. It’s the story of a group of teens hanging out in a reasonably well-to-do suburb of the Norwegian capital, Oslo. There are of course the wild parties, drinking and smoking, good-looking guys and girls falling in and out of love, but "Shame" is different for a number of reasons. Get behind the drama and learn how to engage with young audiences and learn the story of how a public broadcaster made a monster hit with teens - and got to their Mums hooked too!

Fail fast, succeed soon

Mariana Santos (CEO, Chicas Poderosas, Portugal)

Mariana is a visual storyteller and has been trying and failing, and sometimes succeeding in telling interactive stories to engage with millennials. In a constantly changing media landscape, testing and trying to be where our listeners and users are, and becoming the chameleon of digital communication is increasingly important. What communication works for millennials and what doesn´t? This is a talk about concepts, ideas and outcomes in this digital world of communication.

Hello from the other side

Stephanie Hirst (Radio and TV-host, BBC Manchester, UK) 

Stephanie Hirst once was a man. And a very successful one at that, with a remarkable career as a broadcaster in UK radio gaining 14 industry awards. But something was profoundly wrong, and in 2014 she risked all she had and embarked on her transition to female, her true gender. Now back on the air, Stephanie Hirst remains a successful radio personality, working for the BBC as well as devoting her time to transgender activism. In recognition of her work has received an honorary doctor’s degree from Leeds University and a fellowship from the UK’s Radio Academy. In this very personal session, Stephanie Hirst shares her story, as a broadcaster and as a human being.

Leadership-secrets from Berlins #1 radio-station

Marc Haberland (PD, RTL 104,6 Berlin, Germany)

For more than 25 years 104.6 RTL Berlins Hit-Radio has been on the top of Europe's most competitive radio market. Key to their success is the unorthodox leadership-method of legendary Programme Director and morning show-host Arno Müller.  He and his management-team run almost zero meetings, use deadlines instead of working hours and use the “upside-down hopper”.

This has not always been the case. In the beginning the station used to have a bad employer reputation, strict hierarchies, high pressure and long hours. So what has changed in the way 104.6 RTL handles its people and organizes its work? How did they manage to raise their “employer brand“ to the highest standard? In this session, Vice-PD Marc Haberland takes you behind the scenes of how people are led, and how work is organized at Berlin’s No.1 radio station.

Futurologist on the Future

Birthe Linddahl (Futurologist PhD, Denmark)

In this session, Futurologist Birthe Linddal will prepare you for the challenges of tomorrow! What are the mega-trends and anti-trends in the society of the future, and how can you best prepare yourself and your business for the changes to come? Gain well-documented and updated knowledge on the society of the future. Knowledge on the possibilities, challenges and dilemmas, which are an unavoidable part of a world in change. Only if you understand the significant structures in the present and dare to relate it to the future will you have the opportunity to be prepared for the future… a future which definitely will be different from today. 

The future of news in the “post-truth era”

Naja Nielsen (Deputy Head of News, DR, Denmark) and Ludovic Blecher (Head of DNI Innovation Fund, Google, France)

News on radio is doing well. In the latest EBU survey on news, radio was deemed the most trustworthy medium across 33 countries in Europe. But at the same time the ways people are accessing news across Europe is changing rapidly. In this session two speakers at the forefront of news development will share their unique views on the future of news. Naja Nielsen will discuss how global digital companies like Google and Facebook will change the ways we use media and news. Ludovic Blecher will, from his position in Google, talk about the news-projects DNI are funding - projects which all in their own way paint a picture of the future of news and news consumption. 

Have a strong local presence by using constructive journalism

Adrian Feuerbacher (Deputy editor-in-chief, NDR Info, Germany), Jesper Borup (Presenter and news editor DR P4, Denmark), Cathrine Gyldenstedt (Director of Constructive Journalism, University of Windesheim, the Netherlands), Louise Welander (Swedish Radio, Sweden)

Behavioral science research show us how constructive journalism increases news users’ pro¬social behavior, and therefore engagement in society. In this session you will hear from experts working with constructive journalism. You’ll see how constructive journalism can have a huge impact in news users lives, and through this the contribution to their local communities. Through live interviews, debates, story angles, investigative reporting, and solution focused ideas, constructive journalism can have a huge impact in local communities.

Digital strategies for success

Alexandre Vekhoff (Digital Director, Lagardére Active, France) and Simon Gooch (Chief Innovation Officer, Swedish Radio)

How do you create a successful digital, online or mobile strategy for your radio station? What are the keys to success online, and driving social media engagement? And can you grow both your audience and revenue as a result? We’ll look at different case studies from radio stations who have grown their digital presence and massively increased engagement with their audience. Alexandre Vekhoff will give practical advice and tips on how to create and curate popular online content, plus ideas on how to remain consistently innovative. Meanwhile, Simon Gooch spent 9 years in commercial radio trying to rid himself of the title Digital Media Director! Now he’s moved to public service and is trying to do the same thing with his new title of Chief Innovation Officer. Simon will no doubt explain all! But be prepared for a session on discovering how to create digital strategies for success. 

The Smooth way to success

Tony Thomas (Marketing Director, Nova Entertainment, Sydney, Australia)

How do you create an iconic radio brand in a very competitive market? In this session we’ll look at the key drivers of success of ‘smoothfm’ in Australia from its highly successful launch in 2012 to the current number 1 FM radio station. Marketing Director Tony Thomas will cover positioning, launch, approach to music, marketing and the subsequent extension of the smooth brand into other media.

Radio X Y - How to reach the “new man”

Mike Fitzpatrick (Head of content, Triple M, Melbourne, Australia)

What it means to be a man has changed dramatically over the last decade. How do we create content that engages and connects with groups of men with large social and ethical differences? Mike Fitzpatrick will talk about the worldwide cultural change in men and how the Australian male targeted radio station, Triple M, is evolving its brand and content strategy for them, following new research.

Managing change. Big change 

Valerie Weber (Director WDR, Cologne, Germany)

It was nothing short of a sensation when commercial star-PD Valerie Weber became Director of Radio for Germany’s largest public station WDR. From some critical voices in editorial staff inside WDR even before her first day on the job, to a profound structural reform while handling digital transformation, Valerie Weber has had a lot on her plate. And she’s not finished. In this exclusive session, she lets us in in how she’s building the fleet of stations for the future and which impulses are necessary to prepare radio for digital transformation.

PD´s club: radio trends and competition in Netherlands

Basyl de Groot (PD, 3FM, NPO), Sjors Fröhlich (Editor in Chief Business News Radio, BNR), Dave Minneboo (PD, Radio 538, the Netherlands)

Get inside in the minds of some of Holland’s best radio programmers as we bring them together on one stage for the Radiodays Europe ‘PD’s Club’. How do the top stations differentiate from each other? What kind of on-air activity do they use to connect with their audiences, and how have their effectively stations transitioned to a more digitally active listener? Learn from some real Dutch masters… of radio programming! 

Research: All you want to know about millennials  

Tom Webster (Edison Research, USA), Patrick Collins and Siobhan McMenemy (Audience researchers, BBC Radio, UK)  

Radio remains in rude health, and is an attractive proposition for listeners and advertisers alike. However, the long-term future of radio and other forms of audio is very much in the hands of millennials, that key group born between 1980 and 2000. Their radio listening levels are declining, and the key question has to be… “Will millennials become more dependent on radio as they grow older or will they take their current profile of audio consumption with them into their later life”? Two presentations will look at audio in a broader playing field including youth behavior in general, audio in totality and market players from both the public and private arena. 

Snapchat for radio

Mark Kaye (The Mark Kaye Show, USA)

Snapchat is one of the fastest growing social media. Mark Kaye is an award-winning radio personality who has hosted morning entertainment and political talk shows in the USA. He is also an expert in using Snapchat and was the first ever to broadcast a whole radio show on Snapchat. He will deliver a lot of hands-on tips, the all-important ‘do´s and don´ts’ and immerse you in the world of Snapchat for radio.

Music programming masterclass

Jeff Smith (Head of music, BBC Radio 2 and 6music, UK)

BBC Radio 2 is the most listened to radio station in the UK, and plays the widest mix of music on the dial… everything from Frank Sinatra to Coldplay. Meanwhile, BBC 6 Music is the most popular digital station in the UK and plays both cutting edge music of today, along with iconic and groundbreaking music of the past 40 years. Jeff Smith is the Head of Music for both stations. In this session, in conversation with consultant Nik Goodman, we’ll look at the role that creative music programming plays in attracting such big audiences. From the playlist, and breaking new artists, through to specialist shows and live music, hear directly from the mastermind behind the music.

Radio & Records

In a music landscape where services such as Spotify, Apple Music, Tidal and Amazon, exist, it’s now possible to have a ‘hit record’ without radio airplay. Has streaming liberated new artists from the constraints of formulaic radio playlists, or are there just a different set of gatekeepers? In this session, leading players from the record industry, music producers and radio programmers will look at the role radio now plays in introducing new music to listeners, and will ask how the relationship between the music and radio industries has changed over time. Moderator: Nik Goodman, UK.  Speakers TBA.

iHeart: A vision for tomorrow 

Darren Davis (iHeart Radio Worldwide President, USA)

iHeart Media is one of the biggest radio players in the USA with stations across the country, a successful “iHeart” mobile app and huge events. Darren Davis will speak about the power of broadcast radio and how iHeartMedia uses digital to extend their broadcast business. He will also explain how iHeartMedia uses their new subscription music service to deepen listeners’ relationships with radio and the vision for the future of iHeartRadio in the USA and around the world.

10 things great leaders do to motivate talent

Steve Reynolds (Talent coach, USA)

Talent has always been radio's secret sauce - the one positive attribute that helps every successful radio brand stand out, differentiate itself in the marketplace, and be credible to get more listeners and advertisers.

The environment for them to flourish is not created by accident at the best stations. It is part of a management strategy that focuses on ten essential things that create a positive setting, so their creative personalities operate at even higher levels. True leadership is encouraging an atmosphere where all team members feel valued and perform at their best. So join one of America's top talent coaches, Steve Reynolds, as he details ten things the most effective leaders do to build a winning culture to positively motivate personalities for greater success.

Create connections and move perceptions with Virtual Reality

Kathleen Goldhar (Executive Producer, The Current, CBC Radio, Canada)

In the realm of audio on demand, we are only beginning to unlock the potential of this new media format. In this sessions you will experience the emotional, persuasive power of virtual reality in combination with great audio. From CBC, Canada you will experience holistically how “Highway of tears”, through deepened journalism changed the mood of a nation. And from The Guardian you will experience how prisoners feel, when they are confined to ‘solitary’ in a cell measuring 6x9 foot. More speakers TBA.

Battle of the dashboard – the real thing

Ian Geller (Head of Hardware at Spotify, USA), Michael Hill (Director, Radioplayer, UK), N.N. (Citroën, France)

It's not a myth anymore… and after many years spent wondering what the connected car will offer, the radio industry has to update its strategies to stay onboard. Hear from both the car industry and leading players in the distribution of music and content as they all prepare for the ‘Battle of the Dashboard’!

Radio in the connected home

Jack Wetherill (Senior Market Analyst, Futuresound, UK) and others

Alexa - play me a radio station! Connected devices in homes are slowly starting to replace the traditional radio set. Technology strategists tell us the state of the market, whilst speakers from Amazon and Google tell us what they've been doing and why. Speakers TBA.

Big Data – for radio programming and formatting

Ask E. Loevschall-Jensen (Audience Researcher, DR, Denmark) and Joel Sucherman (Senior Director, Digital Products at NPR, USA)

How can you use data journalism to enhance your understanding of your listeners? How are your listeners grouped through their actual behavior and how do they overlap in their interaction with different types of content on your platforms - and the content of your competitors? If you believe “knowledge is power” – you do not want to miss this session on how knowledge will be gathered in the future. After NPR launched a personalized app two years ago, “NPR One” has gathered a huge amount of data on listeners´ behaviour and preferences… data that has been used to change the app and listening experience. What has NPR learned and what conclusions have they drawn?

Radio shows becoming national “camp fires”

 Jan-Willem Roodbeen (NPO, the Netherlands), Bibi Rödöö (SR, Sweden), Mads Steffensen (DR, Denmark)

In every country across Europe there are programs, which over time become bigger than other formats in the national market. Formats like “Top 2000” in the Netherlands, “Mads and the Monopoly” in Denmark and “Summer” in Sweden. What are the secret behind these huge successes and talked about programs in their markets. How did these formats rise to become national “camp fires”, which millions of listeners gather round, take part in and listen to. Come and hear from the biggest stars of radioformatering - the “monster formats”. Formats which make a whole country stop and listen.

Dutch Pirate Radio - an inside story

Herbert Visser (Director of Radio 100% NL and SLAM!, the Netherlands)

Herbert Visser will take us through a journey of the famous Dutch pirate radio stations. He has been there all the time, as a DJ and as a news presenter. He will tell the fascinating story about Delta Radio and Radio Monique. The latter one was on the same vessel as Radio Caroline (off shore in the North Sea). Herbert got raided 16 times by the authorities for illegal broadcasting. Currently he is Director, co-owner, co-founder of the Dutch national FM-station 100% NL, as well as co-owner and director of SLAM!

(Session time: Sunday 19th of March)

Re-inventing radio as medium

Aiden McCullen (Katawave, Ireland) 

There is an urgency for innovations in radio. Radio has a unique position as a source of free music, information and spoken word entertainment, but it is being challenged. What radio can do about this? Aidan Mc Cullen recently joined the Global Think Tank and business imagination studio Katawave, Ireland. Katawave work with business leaders to reimagine their business for today and tomorrows worlds. Aiden has previously developed the digital eco-system of Communicorp Media, Ireland, and as Head of innovation for RTÉ.

Radio: The brand multiplier

Mark Barber (Planning Director, Radiocentre, UK)

Radio has historically been used by advertisers predominantly as a tactical medium, getting messages to air quickly and building frequency – but remains underused as a brand-building medium. This new study expands on Byron Sharp’s theory about How Brands Grow and uses the frameworks that he proposes to explore how TV and radio advertising help brands forge stronger and wider associative networks. The presentation concludes with some practical measures that advertisers can implement to drive brand growth using radio referencing the findings of other Radiocentre studies form recent years.

Programmatic Advertising is here to stay

– Let’s do something with it!

Frank Bachér (MD Digital Media, RMS Radio Marketing Service, Germany)

Programmatic Advertising has been the big trend for years, but only now it is becoming more “mainstream” – this is great news for audio! Times are changing in the advertising business: Programmatic and data-driven ad-technologies are the future – they are here to stay. Now is the time that audio and radio embrace this transformation and start working positively towards it. Audio publishers have a huge potential in actively participating in this transformation rather than passively let it happen. Frank Bachér will address some of the most pressing questions: How will the area of data-driven audio advertising evolve in the coming years? What are opportunities and obstacles for audio publishers?

(more sessions and speakers to be announced)