The Fellowship for International Development Reporting encourages journalists to push the boundaries of daily foreign coverage – which is often focused on disaster or crisis – and set new standards for reporting on the developing world. Fellowship recipients are provided with $25,000 to undertake a substantial reporting project which helps Canadians develop a greater understanding of the complex issues facing the developing world.
The Fellowship has two objectives: to encourage ambitious foreign reporting during an era of tighter news budgets; and, to foster a community of Canadian journalists who share an interest in reporting original topics from the developing world.
The Fellowship for International Development Reporting is a joint initiative of the Canadian Association of Journalists (CAJ) and Aga Khan Foundation Canada (AKFC).
The selection process is chaired by the CAJ, to ensure the highest journalistic standards are upheld. The Fellowship is administered by AKFC, and is funded by both AKFC and the Government of Canada, through the Department of Foreign Affairs, Trade and Development.
Fellowship recipients will use the funding to produce a reporting project which provides information, analysis, and insight into development issues facing communities in the developing world.
Any proposed reporting project must fit within these simple parameters: the project should be about a development issue within a developing country or region.
The Fellowship is open to reporters – both freelancers and staff reporters – with at least five years of work experience as a journalist. Applicants must be citizens or permanent residents of Canada. Successful applicants are expected to focus exclusively on their Fellowship project during the period outlined in their proposals, and will commit to publishing and/or broadcasting their project in a Canadian media outlet (English or French) within one year of being awarded the Fellowship.
The journalist and associated media outlet will retain complete editorial control over the Fellowship project. Published work shall remain the intellectual property of the Fellowship recipients, however AKFC and the CAJ will reserve the right to use and share completed projects (with attribution).
Fellowship alumni will be engaged to share observations about their experiences with Canadian audiences through activities such as events or seminars – for example, the CAJ’s annual conference or AKFC’s annual Journalism & Development Lecture Series. They will also participate in activities to engage and support other journalists interested in reporting on development issues.
An independent jury, chaired by the CAJ, will evaluate the applications. Committee members include individuals such as senior or retired journalists with extensive background in overseas reporting, editors, media owners, academics and journalism educators, and representatives from non-governmental organizations.
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