Sometimes people in the media world talk about attracting the audiences of tomorrow. It's an expression which I try to avoid. Surely everyone, however young or old, counts as the audience of today. We should concentrate on meeting their various needs and enhancing their lives whoever they are.
Here in Bratislava, at the Prix Ex Aequo, you have been focusing producers' attention on the audiences of today, the young audiences of today. Encouraging excellence among our creative communities, and focusing on engaging, surprising content for children, that's what the award is all about. That's what PSM is about. This event fulfills an important role, underlining the importance of kids' story-telling for radio.
This is important work. Humans are storytellers: from viewing Game of Thrones on your television to our ancestors sitting around the camp fire in the half light. Recent detailed research on a remote Filipino population proves that storytelling is central to developing community, creating the human experience: promoting cooperation and establishing ethical norms.
Why radio? It stimulates us to create images, to use our imagination, to be immersed in an experience outside ourselves and our immediate community. The major issue in delivering this experience successfully has always been the availability of the children's audience, the tyranny of the schedule. Thanks to new technologies, radio has now developed to provide flexible platforms. Podcasting means that material is always available, and now - excitingly - smart speakers can make a great contribution in this area, supplementing what parents can provide.
I said that we should be concentrating about the audience of today, not thinking of children at the audience of tomorrow. That said, if young people come to love our public media brands, then they are more likely to be loyal listeners in the future.
The EBU is delighted to be a partner in this prize. Your dedication has created an important event, and one which shows the values of distinctiveness, excellence and diversity which lie at the heart of the public media offer.