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Program Assessment


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Broadcasting to Africa

The Broadcasting Board of Governors promotes freedom and democracy in Africa by broadcasting accurate and objective news and information about the U.S. and the world. The Voice of America broadcasts television and shortwave, FM, and AM radio across Africa in 12 languages, including English, French, Hausa, and Swahili.


What This Rating Means


This is the highest rating a program can achieve. Programs rated Effective set ambitious goals, achieve results, are well-managed and improve efficiency.
  • The program is effectively increasing its target audience. The audience in Africa has grown from 34 million in 2002 to 42 million in 2006. Having an increasing population choose to tune in to BBG's programs is the most important and quantifiable measure of success. Increases may be attributed to: expanded programming; enhanced transmission; increased credibility; or instability in the region.
  • The audience finds the broadcasts to be reliable and credible, and thereby regularly tunes in to hear the information and ideas BBG broadcasts. Surveys found that in 2006, 91% of the BBG audience in Africa found the broadcasts to be trustworthy. The goal is to reach 95% by 2012.
  • The program demonstrates improved efficiency and cost effectiveness in achieving its goals. The Swahili service dropped in cost from $0.27 per audience member in 2003 to $0.11 in 2006. The Zimbabwe service dropped from $5.22 in 2004 to $0.69 in 2006. Changes in cost may be due to a combination of factors including increased audience size and efficiencies in program development and/or delivery.

Improvement Plan

About Improvement Plans

We are taking the following actions to improve the performance of the program:

  • Revise BBGs strategic plan to build on a market-based approach to broadcasting to reach audiences in their preferred media w/ programming tailored to their needs, and to support US strategic interests
  • Implement a new long-term outcome performance measure that assesses the credibility of BBG radio and television programs in Africa, since audiences will regularly tune in to broadcasts they can trust
  • Design and implement more long-term performance measures that align w/ the BBG mission and vision to promote freedom and democracy by broadcasting objective news about the US and the world to Africa.

Learn More

The content on is developed by the U.S. Office of Management and Budget and Federal agencies.