The Google News Initiative (GNI) is seeking applications for its Innovation Challenge in the Middle East, Turkey & Africa region that focuses on projects which increase reader engagement and/or explore new business models to build a stronger future for journalism.
- Google will fund up to $150,000 for selected projects.
- All ideas are welcome but the Challenge requires all projects to have clear indicators showing the impact of the project from a user perspective and/or from a business perspective (eg: audience indicators, business plan when relevant). Successful projects will also need to be delivered within one year.
- The Challenge encourages innovative projects – focused on but not limited to – the areas below:
- Business Models;
- Projects can be experimental but must be measurable with well-defined goals. The Challenge encourages applicants to clearly underline the opportunities of the project by providing clear key performance indicators (KPIs). KPIs should have a significant digital component.
Projects will be evaluated against five main criteria:
- Impact on the news ecosystem: Projects should demonstrate potential for significant positive impact on the creation of new revenue streams and/or change the way people consume digital news.
- Innovation: Preferred projects will be innovative (use of technology, business model, new reader engagement approaches etc) and be transformative for the applicant and for users.
- Feasibility: Projects should demonstrate clear indicators and metrics, or even a business plan when relevant, and set out key risks and mitigation steps.
- Inspiration: How can the project help news organizations learn from each other? Willingness to share knowledge, open source code or/and to contribute to the improvement of the ecosystem overall.
- Diversity: Preferred projects will be able to demonstrate their self-defined commitment to Diversity, Equity and Inclusion whether that is within their audience, organisation or content. Google is committed to Diversity, Equity and Inclusion and works to support companies/projects which are in line with such values.
- The Middle East, Turkey & Africa GNI Innovation Challenge is open to organizations of every size, including freelancers and sole traders, that aim to produce innovative, original journalism and to enlighten citizens with trustworthy journalistic content, whose projects focus on encouraging a more sustainable news ecosystem.
For more information, visit https://newsinitiative.withgoogle.com/innovation-challenges/how-to-apply/mea/