NPR Berlin

Jump to navigation Jump to search

NPR Berlin
CityBerlin, Germany
Frequency104.1 MHz
SloganBerlin's NPR News Station
OwnerNPR Media Berlin gGmbH (a German nonprofit)
First air dateApril 2006
Last air date15 October 2017
WebcastListen live

NPR Berlin was the first international affiliate of the American public radio network, NPR.[1] The station started broadcasting in April 2006. It replaced a radio station from Voice of America that previously broadcast on the 104.1 MHz frequency. The affiliate was operated by NPR Media Berlin gGmbH, a German nonprofit organization[2] of which NPR is the sole shareholder. NPR Berlin was in the unique position of being the only NPR affiliate with a broadcast area outside the United States.[3] Although stations in the Armed Forces Network also carry some NPR programming, they are not NPR affiliates. The station was at the time the only NPR station directly operated by NPR itself. A web stream launched on 2 August 2010 and ended on 2 October 2017.


Much like NPR stations in the States, the station depended on tax-deductible donations from its listeners to operate.[2] Pledge drives took place twice a year. If the station fell short on listener funding, the difference was made up by NPR headquarters. In 2010, the station's pledge drive resulted in 92 listeners donating around €8000.[4]

NPR spent $181,443 on the station in fiscal year 2015.[5] NPR's financial statements published in December 2016 included the following statement about their operations in Berlin:

Management is pursuing options that will reduce the financial subsidy provided by NPR Inc. to NPR Media Berlin, including relinquishing the FM radio station license and closing NPR Media Berlin."[6]


Most of NPR Berlin's schedule consisted of syndicated NPR programming and some live shows.[7] Its original content was limited to a show called Berlin Journal (airing infrequently) and features like Events Calendar, Life in Berlin and Berlin Stories.[8][2] The station also carried some English-language output from partners like Deutsche Welle.


In the first quarter of 2017, NPR returned its broadcast license to the regulator, Medienanstalt Berlin-Brandenburg (MABB), to take effect as of 1 October 2017. NPR planned to become solely a content provider to the station.[9] The station's broadcasting license was originally planned to last until 31 March 2020. MABB invited tenders for a new operator of the frequency on 12 April 2017. The new license is valid for a maximum of seven years.

MABB awarded the frequency to KCRW Berlin on 14 September 2017. It began broadcasting on 16 October 2017 and the schedule is expected to include locally produced speech and music programming. Some NPR magazine content such as All Things Considered and Morning Edition is still part of the schedule. KCRW Berlin is a soon-to-be future subsidiary of 89.9 KCRW in Santa Monica - Los Angeles.


  1. ^ "NPR Berlin to Offer Original Christmas Day Special: The Story Behind Leonard Bernstein's Historic Berlin Performance of Beethoven's Symphony No. 9". Retrieved March 19, 2016.
  2. ^ a b c "Support". Retrieved March 20, 2016.
  3. ^ "Overview And History". Retrieved March 20, 2016.
  4. ^ "Der Sound von Berlin". Archived from the original on April 28, 2017.
  5. ^ "NPR aims to stop operating its Berlin station".
  6. ^ "Consolidated Financial Statements" (PDF).
  7. ^ "NPR Berlin Radio Schedule | NPR Berlin". Retrieved March 20, 2016.
  8. ^ "Berlin Journal". Retrieved March 20, 2016.
  9. ^ Staff, NPR Berlin. "A Note From NPR Berlin 104,1 FM". Retrieved September 24, 2017.

External links[edit]