With a pot of cash prizes totalling €15,000, the IJ4EU Impact Award celebrates the best investigative journalism carried out by teams collaborating across borders in European Union member states. Now in its second year, it is managed by the European Centre for Press and Media Freedom (ECPMF).

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Winners of the inaugural IJ4EU Impact Award were unveiled at IJ4EU’s #UNCOVERED conference in April 2021. They were selected by an independent jury of top journalists and champions of free speech.

Nominations for the next award open on October 14, 2021. An independent jury will select three collaborative, transnational investigations for three prizes, each worth €5,000. The winners will be announced at the next #UNCOVERED conference in Berlin on April 1, 2022.

Journalists and news organisations can nominate their own investigative projects, or those of others, using our secure Good Grants platform. Applicants are encouraged to read the full eligibility and application details below and to consult the relevant section on our frequently asked questions page.

General eligibility

The eligibility criteria will be broadly similar to the submission requirements for the Investigation Support Scheme and the Freelancer Support Scheme. Specifically:

  • The award will be open to cross-border investigations published via any credible medium (e.g. print, broadcast television or radio, online, documentary film, multimedia etc).
  • Nominated investigations must have been published between 1 October 2020 and 30 September 2021.
  • Nominated investigations must involve journalists from at least two EU member states.
  • Nominated investigations need to highlight issues of common interest to citizens of at least two EU member states, and be seen to have strengthened European media.
  • Nominated investigations may have been published in any language. However, for investigations not published in English, a translation in English of the core investigation/summary must be provided.
  • Nominations must include any significant challenge to the honesty, accuracy or fairness of an entry, such as published letters, corrections, retractions as well as responses by the relevant newspaper or website.

Application requirements

The IJ4EU Impact Award nomination process aims to be simple, secure and efficient.

All nominations must be submitted in English via the online Good Grants platform. Award Force is a free-to-use secure platform for submission and storage. It is ISO/IEC 27001 certified and GDPR compliant, and has multi-factor authentication, encrypted data, multi-tier backups and a secure multi-server architecture in VPC.

Each person making a nomination needs to create a personal user account to ensure that the application can be submitted securely and so not to jeopardise the proposed investigation or those involved. The nomination form can be saved and is accessible until the nomination is completed and ready for submission. Once the application is submitted, it can no longer be edited.

Only nominations in English received via the Good Grants platform by the stated date and time will be considered. You will receive an email confirmation of your submission.

Brevity in supplying the information requested will be appreciated.

Nominations for the IJ4EU Impact Award must include:

  • Name of the proposer
  • Nominee contact details 
  • Contact details for the team 
  • Country of the nominee
  • Full names of the members of the team, with nationalities and contact details
  • The title of the project or story (in English)
  • Publication type (e.g. print, broadcast TV, broadcast radio, online, documentary film, multimedia)
  • Link to the publication
  • The name of the outlet in which the project or story was first published
  • Information about the main publishing outlet
  • Names of other media and platforms in which the story has been published
  • A brief summary of the project (the core findings of the investigation)
  • A brief summary of the impact of the project
  • A summary of any critical responses following publication of the project
  • A list of any references to the project in books, reports, newspapers, academic papers etc (maximum six links)
  • A list of any references to the project in books, reports, papers etc (maximum six links) 
  • A brief description of any obstacles faced by the nominee in carrying out the work (e.g. legal challenges or security issues)
  • An estimate of how long it took to carry out the project
  • A brief explanation of why you think the journalist/team deserves this award

The following supporting information is required:

  • A short bio of each member of the team 
  • Links to the project or pdfs of published material
  • Copies of any significant criticism of the project that led to corrections, retractions or responses by the media outlet/s
  • Letters or quotes from qualified third persons underlining the quality of the project

Selection process

While the jury will be fully independent in its decision-making, it will be provided with a set of criteria to guide the process. The jury’s decision should take into account, but will not be limited to, the following:

  • Impact of the nominated investigation
  • Journalistic quality of the nominated investigation
  • Innovative use of cross-border journalism to cover a topic of public interest
  • Newsworthiness / added value of the nominated investigation to public discourse in the EU
  • Storytelling techniques
  • The potential of the nominated investigation to inspire similar cross-border journalism and contribute to the sustainability of investigative journalism in the EU

The winners will be announced at an awards ceremony during the #UNCOVERED conference in Berlin on April 1, 2022.

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