National Public Radio (NPR) is an American public radio broadcaster that serves as a programming syndicator to more than 1,000 public radio stations across the United States. NPR specializes in news and cultural programming.

Media assets

National syndicator to a network of 1,000 radio stations

State Media Matrix Typology: Independent Public (IP)

Ownership and governance

NPR is a non-profit organization whose highest governing body is a board of directors composed of 23 members. Of those, 12 are managers of NPR member stations, nine are public directors who are selected by the Board from among prominent members of the public and the remaining two are the NPR Foundation Chair and the NPR President & CEO.

Source of funding and budget

NPR is funded through a variety of sources, a model that ensures its financial independence and sustainability. Corporate sponsorships and station dues account together for 69% of NPR’s total budget. Other sources of financing include satellite interconnection fees, distribution from endowment and support operations and returns on investments.

In 2021, NPR had total operating expenses of nearly US$ 293m, according to an annual report. The following year, the company’s operating revenues jumped to US$ 316m, according to the latest data from NPR.

Editorial independence

There are no rules imposed by the American government on NPR. In spite of some controversies including accusations of liberal bias, there is no evidence showing government control of NPR’s editorial coverage.

NPR has an internal set of rules that establish its editorial independence.

NPR has an NPR Public Editor, an independent expert who receives comments and feedback from the general public, which are then addressed with the station’s management.

August 2023