Free Press Unlimited announces the 2024 Collaborative Journalism Fellows

Fellowships for cross border collaboration

Free Press Unlimited is pleased to announce the selection of 20 fellows for the 2024 Collaborative Journalism Fellowship. Following a competitive application process, an internationally diverse cohort of fellows has been chosen from a pool of 109 applicants representing 25 countries across Europe.

The Collaborative Journalism Fellowship is part of the Collaborative and Investigative Journalism Initiative (CIJI), initiated by Free Press Unlimited in parntership with Reporters Without Borders (RSF), Tactical Tech (TT), Fundacja Reporterów (FR), OBC Transeuropa (OBCT), and Delfi. The programme aims to equip early and mid-career journalists with the skills necessary to develop and execute collaborative cross-border investigations. Fellows will participate in a five-month programme (April-August 2024) consisting of online training sessions, workshops, mentorship opportunities, and in-person networking events and masterclasses.

"We believe in the power of collaborative journalism to drive positive change and promote transparency and accountability," said Ruth Kronenburg, Executive Director of Free Press Unlimited. "Through this fellowship, we aim to empower journalists with the tools and resources they need to produce impactful cross-border investigations that address pressing issues and inform the public."

Throughout the fellowship, fellows will have access to experienced mentors from CIJI's regional media hubs and partner networks, including Investigate Europe, Journalists in Need Network, Rise Project Romania, Delfi, OBC Transeuropa, and Fundacja Reporterów. They will also have the opportunity to apply for cross-border reporting grants, with ten grants worth up to 10,000 EUR each available upon completion of the fellowship.

"It's been exciting to bring together this group of talented journalists from across Europe," said Carolyn Thompson, an award-winning data and investigative journalist and the coordinator of the fellowship. "Each of the journalists comes with different experiences, subjects of interest, and regional knowledge. We're excited to see how they will combine these into meaningful investigative projects."

The selection process

The open call for applications for the Collaborative Journalism Fellowship ran between 7 February - 4 March 2024. Over 100 candidates from 25 countries across Europe applied for the fellowship. The jury, consisting of CIJI consortium partners and CIJI regional media hubs, reviewed the applications and made the final selection. Selection criteria included the quality and originality of the proposals, diversity of ideas, candidate’s experience, and motivation to be involved in collaborative projects beyond CIJI. The jury also looked to ensure a geographic balance and diversity of perspectives in the fellowship cohort.

CIJI is a collaborative journalism initiative aimed at equipping independent media outlets and individual journalists with resources, networking infrastructure, and methods for high-quality, ethical, and accountable collaborative and investigative journalism. It promotes collaborative storytelling and peer support in the journalism community.

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