The third round of contests for EU award for investigative journalism in Western Balkans and Turkey was launched in March 2017 and is now closed in all seven countries.
The contests aim at celebrating and promoting outstanding achievements of investigative journalists as well as improving the visibility of quality investigative journalism in the Western Balkans and Turkey. Investigative stories reporting on societal issues related to abuse of power and fundamental rights, corruption and organised crime that otherwise would not have been brought to the public’s attention were sought.
The 2017 contests are rewarding the investigative journalistic works published in 2016. The contests in each country include one overall category for the “best investigative story” and a specific category for “best investigative story by young journalist”.
237 nominations were received this year, of which 139 can qualify for the story by young journalist award. Compared to 2016, when this new category was introduced for the first time, the nominations of stories by young investigative journalists increased by 11%.
The numbers of nominations received per country are the following:
• Albania: 28 nominations, including 18 for young journalist category,
• Bosnia and Herzegovina: 64 nominations, including 31 for young journalist category,
• Kosovo: 32 nominations, including 17 for young journalist category,
• Macedonia: 32 nominations, including 22 for young journalist category,
• Montenegro: 17 nominations, including 3 for young journalist category,
• Serbia: 24 nominations, including 15 for young journalist category, and
• Turkey: 40 nominations, including 33 for young journalist category.
The evaluation of the nominated investigative stories is being done by independent juries in each country. The award ceremonies are expected in May 2017.
The 2017 award fund for each country is 10,000 euro. One to three investigative stories shall be awarded in each country; 3,000- 5,000 euro per individual prize is to be awarded.
The EU award for investigative journalism is being given this year for the third and the last time in the frame of the project entrusted by the European Commission to the regional partnership of civil society organisations coordinated by the Peace Institute in Ljubljana.