Free Press Unlimited, jointly with consortium partners, is inviting independent journalists and news media in Europe to apply for small production grants for cross-border stories on climate change, migration and public health, as part of the European Excellence Exchange in Journalism (E³J) project.
E³J is a network-based initiative that promotes ethical standards, offers training and capacity building opportunities and a forum for collaboration and peer-support.
With these grants, Free Press Unlimited and its E³J partners seek to support strategic cross-border collaborations between individual journalists and independent news media on topics of public interest in Europe.
Journalists who include perspectives from other countries in their investigation open up new connections and maximise their story’s reach. To properly address societal challenges such as the consequences of the Covid-19 pandemic or the climate crisis, going beyond national borders becomes a need for journalists.
Setting up collaborations with colleagues abroad is not an easy task to do on your own. Aside from being aware of unwritten rules, organisational and intercultural skills are also required.
These small grants opportunities will be just a first step to encourage journalists all over Europe to form longer-term collaboration and become more familiar with the work cycles and approaches of each other.
- They expect to award up to 15 grants, each worth up to 3000 EUR. Teams are free to divide this grant amount between team members according to their specific needs.
- Which topics can be covered?
You can submit a pitch for a story covering one of these topics:
- Climate Change
- Public Health
- Or a mix of the above
- The story should be of relevance to at least two eligible European countries.
- The story should be published by at least two media outlets from the countries where the story narrative unfolds, in order to engage their local or national audiences.
- Cross-border teams of freelancers and/or staff journalists with a proven track record in cross-border journalism and/or investigative journalism in independent European news media.
- Teams should be composed of at least two journalists residing in two different EU member states or EU candidate countries.
- Austria, Belgium, Bulgaria, Croatia, Republic of Cyprus, Czech Republic, Denmark, Estonia, Finland, France, Germany, Greece, Hungary, Ireland, Italy, Latvia, Lithuania, Luxembourg, Malta, Netherlands, Poland, Portugal, Romania, Slovakia, Slovenia, Spain and Sweden
- Non-EU Participating Countries in the Creative Europe Programme
- Iceland, Norway, Liechtenstein, Albania, Bosnia and Herzegovina, Montenegro, Northern Macedonia, Serbia
The jury will guide its decision by the following criteria:
- Editorial quality (Does your story pitch cover an under-reported topic? Do you have a fresh perspective on a well-known issue? Is your approach evidence-backed and/or solution-oriented?)
- Story relevance (Why this story and why now? Does your story touch on a topic of high-relevance at local, national, regional or European levels? What is the cross-border relevance?)
- Reach and Impact (Does your story have the potential to engage a significant audience? Does your format suit the proposed story and target audience? Do you have a well-thought out publication plan? What change do you want your story to make?)
- Project feasibility (Is the proposed project timeline and budget feasible? Did you consider potential risks and ways to mitigate them?)
- Applicants’ experience (Does the team have the necessary experience and set-up to carry out the proposed project?)
Additionally, the jury will look to ensure a balance across:
- Countries and regions in Europe
- Proposed story themes
For more information, visit Free Press Unlimited.