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GRID-Arendal is offering grants for investigative journalism projects focused on environmental crime in developing countries. Due to the success of the previous grants, we are proud to announce that this year we are raising the number of grants offered to six, each representing 20,000 Norwegian kronor (approximately €2,000).

Applications are due the 30th of November 2021, and grant winners will be awarded in December 2021.

GRID-Arendal is a non-profit environmental foundation based in Norway and supported by the Norwegian Agency for Development Cooperation, among other donors. We are a Partner of the UN Environment Programme and collaborate with other partners on projects that protect the environment, restore ecosystems, and advance the Sustainable Development Goals, with an emphasis on supporting developing countries by creating environmental knowledge to encourage positive change.

Our journalism grant program funds in-depth investigative journalism that breaks new ground and reveals new information about environmental crimes that takes place within or across developing countries. We are looking for high-impact reporting, especially on issues that are neglected by mainstream media. We invite proposals for projects on a variety of media platforms, including print, online, audio, video, and multimedia projects. Proposals for data journalism, data visualization, and open source intelligence (OSINT) journalism are welcome. All projects must be written in English (or translated to English if published in a different language), however, we encourage submissions from journalists working in a variety of languages.

All of our grants will support reporting projects that focus on one or more countries on the Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD) list of Official Development Assistance recipients (with exception to project on environmental crimes in the Arctic region that will be evaluated under specific cases in this grant).

Past journalism grants from GRID-Arendal have, among others, supported reporting on:

· Illegal gold mining in rainforests in Colombia (Newsweek)

· Logging in a national park in Kenya (Reuters)

· Illegal logging in Bolivian national parks (Mongabay)

· Illegal coal mining in Zimbabwe (The Standard)

· Palm oil culture impacts in Indonesian rainforest (Vice)

· Gender persecution around environmental militantism in Colombia (Mutante)

· Illegal charcoal exploitation in Nigeria (SaharaReporters)

This year, themes we will be interested funding include (but are not limited to):

· Illegal wildlife trade and poaching;

· Illegal logging and timber trade;

· Illegal cobalt mining;

· Illegal, Unreported and Unregulated fisheries;

· Plastic waste crimes;

· Environmental crimes in the Arctic region.

In case of projects that involve travel to indigenous, isolated, or vulnerable communities, we will require approach preserving the safety of those communities.

The deadline for finishing a project will be six months from the signing of a grant agreement. It is expected that funded projects acknowledge the grant support from GRID-Arendal.

Eligibility criteria

  • You must be a professional journalist, either a staff member at a media organization or a freelancer with a record of publishing work in respected media organizations.
  • You must have experience in investigative journalism.

Journalists from anywhere in the world are welcome to apply. We encourage applications from candidates with diverse backgrounds.

Application requirements

Applications are due in full by midnight Central European Time (CET) on November 30, 2021. Applications should include:

  • Completed application form. The application form can be found on the activity page for investigative journalism grants found here
  • Résumé / CV
  • Estimated project budget, explaining what grant money would pay for
  • (Optional) letter of commitment or a letter of interest from a media outlet.

Applications and supporting documents should be in English and budgets should be expressed in Norwegian kroner. All materials should be combined into a single PDF and emailed to Romain Langeard (romain.langeard@grida.no) using the subject "GRANT 2022_Name". Applications that are incomplete or do not meet these requirements will not be considered.

Evaluation process

Applications will be evaluated by a team of GRID-Arendal personnel. Among other factors, we will consider:

  • Potential to reach a wide audience
  • Potential to create an impact and induce positive change
  • Journalist’s experience in investigative reporting (we may ask for professional references in the final phase)

Successful applicants will be contacted by December 23rd, 2021.

GRID-Arendal would like to acknowledge the support of Oxepeckers, International Journalist´s network, Earth Journalist Network, Arctic Today, High North News, The Barents Observer, Code for Africa for this initiative.

We believe in the power of investigative journalism to make a difference. We look forward to reviewing your submissions and spurring positive change together.

Photo at top: Fisherboat passes mangrove forest at Ko Lanta, Thailand by Peter Prokosch

Release date: 01 Nov 2021

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