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EJC announces 14 development reporting grant winners

Press release
The European Journalism Centre
Maastricht, 10 May 2016

The European Journalism Centre (EJC) is proud to announce the winners of the seventh round of the Innovation in Development Reporting (IDR) Grant Programme. A combined total of more than €260,000 will be awarded to fourteen journalistic projects that advance development reporting and bring innovative storytelling on global development to a wider public.

The final winners were selected during a meeting of the IDR Grant Programme Advisory Council, consisting of senior international journalists. The projects that are eligible for funding will be greenlighted upon signature of a legal contract.

The awarded projects have received endorsement from significant media outlets located in France, Germany, Italy, Spain, the Netherlands, Norway, the United Kingdom and many other countries. The winning projects touch upon multiple development issues, such as water grabbing; ship breaking, its human costs and its consequences on nature; South-South cooperation; the repercussions of the decrease of the bee population on the food system; and the fight against poverty and social exclusion among elderly people in Tanzania and Ethiopia.

The winners were chosen because of their solid story ideas and innovative multi-platform approaches, operating on the crossroads between investigative, data-driven and visual journalism. To convey complex development stories in engaging ways, the winning projects will make use of web-documentaries, graphic journalism, gamification elements, 360 degrees videos, virtual reality, etc. In addition, the advisory council applauded the multi-platform approach of many applicants, as this magnifies the visibility and impact of their stories.

“With this grant round we have reached the milestone of one hundred funded projects. It’s rewarding to see that, beyond the growing numbers, our grantees have shown visible progress on the quality and innovation level of their stories and have been achieving an ever widening impact,” says EJC Director Wilfried Ruetten.

The winners of this round will join a two-day boot camp training on 9 and 10 June, in Maastricht, the Netherlands, where they will meet fellow grantees and learn from top-level media practitioners. They will work on the development of their stories, learn about leveraging multimedia storytelling techniques and develop publication strategies aimed at achieving the best possible public impact.

The seventh call for applications ran between 10 September 2015 and 2 March 2016. In total, 199 applications were received.

These are the winning projects:

Project name: Water grabbing - A story of water
Team: Emanuele Bompan (Project lead), Giada Connestari, Gianluca Cerere, Riccardo Pravettoni
Description: Water grabbing explores the lack of water sovereignty and the limitation of access to water. It shows the consequences of these issues and the positive and negative practices.
Project locations: Ghana, Cambodia, India, Nepal, Ethiopia
Media outlets: (UK), Al Jazeera (UK), La Stampa (IT), BioEcoGeo (IT), Renewable Matter (IT)
Budget: €21.000

Project name: With bare hands - An immersive journey into ship breaking
Team: Tomaso Clavarino (Project lead), Isacco Chiaf
Description: “With bare hands” is a multimedia and data-driven reporting project that highlights and investigates the impact on the environment and the human costs of ship breaking in developing countries.
Project locations: Bangladesh, India
Media outlets: Newsweek (USA), Al Jazeera (UK), Internazionale (IT), El Pais (ES), MO* (BE)
Budget: €20.500

Project name: Mosquitoes vs. Mankind
Team: Julia Gross (Project lead)
Description: This project investigates new methods that are being developed to fight mosquitoes and explores the ecological consequences and health risks associated with them.
Project locations: Germany, France, USA, India, Vietnam, Tanzania
Media outlets: (Süddeutsche Zeitung) (DE), Deutsche Welle (DE), Frankfurter Allgemeine Sonntagszeitung (DE), New Internationalist (UK), Forskning&Framsteg (Sweden), Vice Motherboard Italia N.I. (IT)
Budget: €19.545

Project name: Basmati rice - The unsustainable truth
Team: Klaas van Dijken (Project lead), Hanna Sistek, Adriane Ohanesian, Ludo Hekman, Manpreet Romana
Description: This interactive documentary explores the practices behind the production of Basmati rice in India and the life-threatening effects of the use of chemicals and pesticides.
Project locations: India, The Netherlands, Norway, Finland, Sweden
Media outlets: Trouw (NL), EenVandaag (NL), National Geographic (USA), Tidningen Syre (Sweden), Agenda Magasin (Norway), Hufvudstadsbladet (Finland)
Budget: €18.510

Project name: A fistful of shrimps
Team: Jacopo Pasotti (Project lead)
Description: The project explores the consequences of the fast pace of seafood production on coastal mangrove ecosystems and the preservation solutions carried out by local communities.
Project locations: Indonesia, The Netherlands, Italy
Media outlets: La Repubblica (IT), National Geographic Italy (IT), Wetland International (NL), Al Jazeera (USA), Observador (PT), Le Temps (Switzerland), Mongabay (Indonesia)
Budget: €18.470

Project name: Hunger for bees
Team: Monica Pelliccia (Project lead), Daniela Frechero, Adelina Zarlenga, Andrea Lucio, Jamie Mullick
Description: Hunger for bees is a multimedia graphic novel about the decrease of the bee population and the possible repercussions on the global food system.
Project locations: India, Italy
Media outlets: La Repubblica (IT), EFE Verde (ES)
Budget: €20.875

Project name: Housing Stories
Team: Nicolas Kayser-Bril (Project lead), Joan Bardeletti
Description: The project “Housing Stories” makes inequalities real and visible by telling the fight of 3 middle-class families, in 3 cities, to live in a decent and affordable flat.
Project locations: Sao Paolo (Brazil), Ho Chi Minh City (Vietnam), Paris (France)
Media outlets: Internazionale (IT), Libération (FR), Asialyst (pan-Asian)
Budget: €19.900

Project name: Demal Teniew (Go and come back)
Team: Marcella Pasotti (Project lead), Silvia Lami, Viola Bachini, Sylvain Cherkaoui
Description: Demal Teniew is an interactive web-documentary on return migration between Italy and Senegal that aims to present an alternative discourse on migration through a data-driven multi-media storytelling strategy.
Project locations: Senegal, Italy
Media outlets: L’Espresso (IT), Jeune Afrique (FR), Le Soleil (Senegal)
Budget: €20.000

Project name: The Plantation That Consumes Europe
Team: Juan Luis Sánchez (Project lead), Raúl Sánchez, Gabriela Sánchez, José Luis Sanz, Ximena Villagrán
Description: “The Plantation That Consumes Europe” is a data driven and cross-border investigation that explores the hidden sides of the Latin American and African plantations' agricultural model that feeds western countries.
Project locations: Guatemala, Honduras, Colombia, Côte d'Ivoire
Media outlets: (ES), La Sexta (ES), Soy502 (Guatemala), El Faro (El Salvador/Latin America)
Budget: €19.580

Project name: To be 70 in Addis and Dar-es-Salaam: ageing in Sub-Saharan Africa. A new fight against poverty
Team: Monika Rebala (Project lead), Klara Wyrzykowska
Description: This multimedia project presents stories on the fight against poverty and social exclusion among elderly people in Tanzania and Ethiopia.
Project locations: Tanzania, Ethiopia
Media outlets: Le Point (FR), (FR), Die Welt (DE), Gazeta Wyborcza (PL), The Christian Science Monitor (International)
Budget: €12.844

Project name: When aid comes from the South
Team: Benoit Cros (Project lead), Carla Ariza, Mar Porgimon
Description: “When aid comes from the South” explores South-South cooperation, its way of functioning, its concrete realisations and its potential to reshape the global partnership on development.
Project locations: El Salvador, Senegal, India, Indonesia
Media outlets: Internazionale (IT), De Correspondent (NL), El Español (ES), El Diari de l'Educació (ES)
Budget: €19.500

Project name: Future Cities - the revival of the jazz heritage in Addis Ababa
Team: Stephanie Bakker, Yvonne Brandwijk
Description: Future Cities is a transmedia project about five exciting emerging urban areas, the people and stories behind the demographic and economic statistics of urban growth.
Project locations: Addis Ababa (Ethiopia), Ecuador (Quito), Medellin (Columbia), Yangon (Myanmar), Kinshasa (Democratic Republic of the Congo), Lima (Peru)
Media outlet: De Volkskrant (NL)
Budget: €18.000

Project name: I Don't!
Team: Natalia Otero (Project lead), Rafael Fabrés
Description: I Don't is a transnational multimedia survey on Child Marriage, based on data and solid human narrative using strong women’s voices to show that girls' victories are society's victories.
Project locations: Brazil, India
Media outlets: El Confidencial (ES), EFE (ES)
Budget: €19.358

Project name: Life in Gawair: An Immersive Journey through Dhaka's Slums
Team: Daniel Archer (Project lead), Steve Johnson
Description: The project explores daily life in the Gawair slum, using a combination of virtual reality and graphic journalism to share the perspectives of its inhabitants.
Project location: Bangladesh (Dhaka)
Media outlets: Die Zeit (DE), the Associated Press (International)
Budget: €18.050

Journalists and media organisations interested in breaking away from development journalism stereotypes are encouraged to pitch us their creative ideas in the upcoming eighth round of applications. The deadline to apply is 7 September 2016 (22:00 CET). The online application form can be found here. For questions, check the FAQ guide or send an email to [email protected].

Note for editors:

The Innovation in Development Reporting Grant Programme was launched in January 2013 by the EJC with support from the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation. The project aims to reward quality journalism and advance a new and distinctive agenda for development coverage through awarding funding to a selection of state-of-the-art reporting projects of great impact and high visibility. Since 2013, the programme has granted funding to 100 projects.

The IDR Grant Programme has received $1,785,000 for the period of 2015 and 2016 that will be awarded to innovative journalistic projects centred on global development topics.

The European Journalism Centre (EJC) is a non-profit international foundation with the remit to improve, strengthen, and underpin journalism and the news media. This mission has two main aspects: on the one hand, it is about safeguarding, enhancing, and future-proofing quality journalism in Europe and on the other hand, it is about supporting initiatives towards press freedom in emerging and developing countries. This often includes creating the framework conditions for independent and self-determined journalism in the first place. To these ends, the EJC provides thematic training, professional capacity development, and a wide range of support activities for journalists.

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