Prof. Vinod Pavarala, Faculty in the Department of Communication, S N School of Arts & Communication and UNESCO Chair on Community Media, University of Hyderabad has been invited by the Northumbria University, UK to take part in their Great Debate on 15 July 2013.

Centre for International Development at Northumbria University and North East Centre for Transformative education and Research are organizing the Great Debate on Media, Culture, Voice: Tackling inequality and marginalisation at the Northumbria University. The debate will focus on ‘What roles can and should media and culture play in tackling inequality and enabling the marginalised to ‘speak’? Is there are a risk of ‘culture’ becoming social policy for the poor and leisure for the rich?

Prof. Pavarala has been one of the leading campaigners for democratization of airwaves in India and has played a significant role in drafting the national policy permitting community radio a space on the radio dial in the country in the last one decade.

As founder-President of the Community Radio Forum of India, he plays an active role in civil society’s engagements with forging alternative media spaces for the marginalized, mostly rural, communities in India. His much-reviewed book, co-authored with Kanchan K. Malik, Other Voices: the struggle for community radio in India (Sage, 2007) documents community-based efforts across India to carve out an alternative public sphere. Prof. Pavarala has dual masters in Sociology and Communication and a Ph.D from University of Pittsburgh. He taught at the University of Pittsburgh, Virginia Tech (Blacksburg, VA), and IIT-Bombay, before joining University of Hyderabad in 1995. He was a Visiting Fellow at Princeton University in 1998-99, and had the honor of being invited by the International Communication Association to speak at a special plenary on communication research and policy at its annual meeting in Boston in May 2011.