Learn about the research behind Re-Imagined Radio

Re-Imagined Radio is a research project led by John F. Barber that combines literary experiences (like writing, reading, speaking, and listening), media art (like digital sound and graphics and social media) to re-imagine radio as a medium for engaging, immersive, shared storytelling. Research inquiries inform this creative practice and provide an evolving conceptual framework, as well as a growing list of outcomes. This node provides access to these inquiries, the information they provide, and listening opportunities.


These inquiries consider different aspects of radio and sound art to inform the practices of Re-Imagined Radio.

Audio Drama

Audio Drama

Not dependent on human voice for narrative, nor radio for distribution, but still evokes drama. Learn More

Aural / Oral Stories

Aural / Oral Stories

Two approaches for knowing through sound(s). One with people, the other with ambient sounds. Learn More

Radio Drama

Radio Drama

Radio combines dialogue, music, sound effects, and silence to spark listeners' imaginations. Learn More

Sound Theory

Sound Theory

Evolving underpinnings and framework for radio and sound research and creative practices. Learn More


As a research project, Re-Imagined Radio explores how scripted dialogue, sound effects, music, silence, and imagination can create and sustain an engaging narrative, a sequence of events experienced by listeners. Radio drama provides different narrative experiences, suspense, horror, historical, fantasy, for example. Direct engagement between sound(s) and listeners' imaginations prompts emotion, interaction, participation, and immersion.

Re-Imagined Radio investigates ways of understanding the creation and consumption of radio art and drama outside representation by text, code, and other formal systems associated with the ways "meaning" has been traditionally approached. Instead, this project considers radio storytelling through its re-imagination and re-creation. This approach, called research-as-practice, action research, and/or practice-based research, combines research and creative practice to promote systematic inquiry conducted via practical action in order to devise or test new information and communicate knowledge. Specific research questions include . . .


Re-Imagined Radio offers radio stories as broadcasts, streams, and listening events for audiences local and global. Voice actors, sound artists, musicians, singers, and other creative people help re-image these stories as community storytelling opportunities. Re-Imagined Radio promotes immersive auditory experiences for its audiences, rich with narrative opportunities. With the addition of Internet streaming and recording, Re-Imagined Radio reaches listeners separated by time and distance, unites them in the shared act of listening, and prompts consideration of whether radio art + transmission art = new mode for community storytelling?.


Re-Imagined Radio has as its mission to promote community engagement through radio art and performance. What is learned is believed helpful for how future forms of storytelling might be informed by our embrace of digital technology. Desired results: radio art, transmission art, community art. Radio as never before seen, or heard. Radio, an old medium, providing new opportunities for 21st century storytelling, inside your mind.


Information about publications and presentations from the Re-Imagined Radio research project.


Flowers, Kristen. Lend Me Your Ear: Re-Imagined Radio Captures Listners' Imaginations. Vancouver Family Magazine, 1 Feb. 2022, pp. 12, 14, 16.

Juarez, Cambrie. Q+A: Behind the microphone with Re-Imagined Radio creator John Barber. PDX Today, 8 Dec. 2022.
The Vancouver-based radio program produces classic and contemporary stories for broadcast and streaming, as well as one live, on-stage performance each year.


Phillips, Rebecca. "Re-Imagined Radio and CooperCon." Washington State Magazine, Fall 2021, p. 9.
Barber, John. "Preservation through Re-Creation: Re-Newing Radio as Community Storytelling." A Century of Broadcasting: Preservation and Renewal Conference, 22-24 Oct. 2020, Library of Congress, Washington, DC. (Accepted)


Barber, John F. "The War of the Worlds Broadcast: Fake News or Engaging Storytelling?" Radio's Second Century: A Reader, edited by John A. Hendricks, Rutgers University Press, 2020, pp. 96-118.
—. "Future Radio and Social Knowledge Creation in the Humanities." Social Knowledge Creation in the Humanities, Vol. 2, edited by Aaron Mauro, Iter Press. (In press)
—. "Electronic Literature and Sound." Electronic Literature as Digital Humanities: Contexts, Forms & Practices, edited by James O'Sullivan and Dene Grigar, Bloomsbury. (In press)


Barber, John F. "A Mighty Span: Sound, Practice, Community." Resonant Practices in Communities of Sound, SpokenWeb Symposium, 30-31 May 2019, Simon Fraser University, Harbour Centre, Vancouver, BC, Canada.


Barber, John. Martians, Moustaches, and Radio Drama. A Case Study for Sound Art Curation by Re-Creation. Leonardo Electronic Almanac, vol. 33, no. 3, Dec. 2018.


Barber, John. Radio Art: A (mass) Medium Becomes An (artistic) Medium. Hyperrhiz: New Media Cultures, vol. 17, 2017,
Reprinted in French translation as L'art Radiophonique: Histoire d'un Médium de Masse Devenu Médium Artistique, Appareil, vol. 18, 2017.
Reprinted in Art Médium, Média, edited by Pascal Krajewski, L'Harmattan, 2018, pp. 209-226. ISBN: 978-2-343-13800-8.
—. Radio Nouspace: Radio, Sound, and Digital Humanities. Digital Studies/Le champ numérique, vol. 7, no. 1, 13 Oct. 2017,
Reprinted in Digital Studies/Le champ numérique, vol. 8, no. 1, 28 Feb. 2018. DOI:
—. "Broadcasting from the Barricades and Beaches: BBC Listeners and Producers Learn the Power of Radio." BBC and the World News Service: Debts & Legacies Conference, 3-4 Feb. 2017, King's College, London, England.


Barber, John. "Curation by Re-Creation: Innovative, New Knowledge Model for Classic Radio Drama." New Knowledge Models: Sustaining Partnerships to Transform Scholarly Production, INKE (Implementing New Knowledge Environments) Conference, 19 Jan. 2016, Whistler, BC, Canada.


Barber, John. Internet Radio and Electronic Literature: Locating the Text in Aural Narratives. ebr [electronic book review], 3 May 2014.
—. Future Audio Drama: Imagine the Possibilities. Audio Drama Seminar, 19-20 Aug. 2014, University of Copenhagen, Copenhagen, Denmark. See Birmingham School of Media's Radio Blog.
—. "Radio: Local, Global, Collaborative, Mobile." ICA Mobile Preconference, 21-22 May 2014, University of Washington, Seattle, WA.
—. "Sound Curation by Re-Creation: The War of the Worlds Radio (Re)broadcast, Martians with Mustaches: A Case Study and Suggestions." International Sound Arts Curation Series, 15-17 May 2014, Goldsmith's, University of London and The Courtauld Institute of Art, London, England.


Barber, John. Audiobiography: 1960s: A Sonic Memoir. Harlot: A Revealing Look at the Arts of Persuasion, vol. 9, Apr. 2013.
—. "Internet Radio and Electronic Literature: Locating the Text in Aural Narratives." Electronic Literature Organization 2013 International Conference, 24-27 Sep. 2013, Paris, France.
—. "Internet Radio: Radio after the Future." What is Radio? Exploring the Past, Present, and Future of Radio Conference, 25-27 Apr. 2013, University of Oregon School of Journalism and Communication, Portland, OR.