Urban Alternative Music Format – Phase 2

New applications are no longer being accepted. Check this page for updates about this initiative.


Open to all applicants.


March 27, 2017

Request for Proposals

In 2015 CPB began supporting an endeavor to develop a new music format for public radio (w.t. “Urban Alternative”). The Urban Alternative format is an innovative approach to attracting younger, multicultural audiences to public media. Phase I of the initiative began with research that explored contemporary music genres with focus groups, audience testing, and market analyses in several markets. The research found that the hip-hop, R&B, indie rock and dance genres have broad appeal among multicultural millennials (“Target Audience”). Focus groups agreed that the music has the potential to attract the Target Audience to public media, which is complemented with community-based programming and community engagement.

The Corporation for Public Broadcasting (CPB) is seeking a company or an individual (“Consultant”) to conduct additional research and provide recommendations and coaching to implement the format, provide assistance with community engagement and development at up to three stations (“Pilot Stations”) in markets to be determined by CPB. The Consultant will also develop a set of recommendations and best practices subject to CPB’s approval, to be shared with the public media system so that the format may be implemented by stations in other markets.

The Consultant will be paid on a fixed fee basis. The project is expected to begin no later than June 1, 2017, ending May 31, 2018. The contract will be renewable for two additional six month-consecutive terms to provide on-going assistance for this project, at CPB’s sole discretion. During the renewal terms the Consultant will compensated on an hourly basis.

CPB is a private, non-profit corporation authorized by Congress in 1967 to receive federal government appropriations and to use those funds to promote the growth and development of public broadcasting and public telecommunications services. CPB is not a government agency.

CPB remains focused on facilitating a public media system that is valued by all Americans and reflects a diversity of ideas, content, talent and delivery. CPB’s core values of collaboration, partnership, innovation, engagement and diversity guide its strategic approach to program investments system-wide and are reflected in the goals of its business plan as digital, dialogue and diversity.

CPB invests in approximately 1,500 local radio and television stations – their programs, services and other initiatives to serve and engage the public. CPB funds diverse and innovative programming and other media content that is educational, informative and cultural.

CPB-funded television programs are primarily distributed through PBS. The radio programs that CPB funds are distributed primarily through NPR, American Public Media and Public Radio International and the Public Radio Exchange. CPB does more than invest in quality programming; it helps parents and teachers educate children by providing resources that enhance the learning process.

Please download the Request for Proposals below for detailed information, including application requirements.
PDF icon Request for Proposals482.84 KB