Deadline: May 31, 2023
Applications are open for the Kurt Schork Awards in International Journalism 2023. Now in their 22nd year, the Awards honour excellence in courageous reporting of conflict, corruption, human rights transgressions and injustice.
Named in memory of American freelance journalist Kurt Schork – who was killed in 2000 while on assignment for Reuters in Sierra Leone – the Awards continue to highlight the particular difficulties faced by freelance journalists, local reporters and fixers, as well as their courageous reporting.
Since its inception in 2002, the Kurt Schork Memorial Fund has sought to support those journalists Kurt most admired, the freelancers and local reporters whose work is often poorly paid, mostly unsung and all too often fraught with danger. Today, the three annual awards, for freelance and local journalism and, since 2017, for newsfixers, are recognized worldwide as a mark of excellence and have an established track record for brave reporting on conflict, corruption and injustice.
The only international recognition of their type for print journalists, the Awards are split into three categories:
- Freelance Award: recognising journalists who travel to the world’s conflict zones, usually at great personal risk, to witness and report on the impact and consequences of these events.
- Local Reporter Award: recognising the often-overlooked work of journalists in developing nations (or countries in transition) who write about events in their homeland.
- News Fixer Award: recognising local journalists and/or experts, hired by a visiting foreign reporter or news organisation, whose guidance and local knowledge materially benefited the content, impact and reach of the stories submitted.
- The three winners – each of whom will receive a cash prize of $5,000 – will be announced in October 2023.
- For the second year, the winners will be invited to participate in a panel discussion at the Thomson Reuters Foundation’s flagship annual event, Trust Conference. The event is taking place in London on 19 & 20 October and will provide the journalists with a platform to speak about their award-winning work and frontline experiences.
- Open to freelance journalists, local reporters and fixers from all over the world;
- They accept co-authored entries;
- To keep the judging workload to a reasonably-sized task, they only accept articles written for newspaper, magazine or internet publication, ideally not exceeding 5000 words per article.
- Judges for the Freelance and Local Reporter Awards will look for journalistic excellence in applicants’ submissions and evidence of determination and courage in obtaining their stories.
- The range of skills displayed by a news fixer can be vast and this is taken into consideration by the jury.
- They will look for evidence of skills such as displaying excellent news judgment, suggesting story leads and providing logistical support.