Terms of Reference
Grants for production of cross-border multimedia stories “Neighbors”
within the project “Strengthening Independent Media in Europe and Eurasia”
Internews is implementing regional project “Strengthening Independent Media in Europe and Eurasia” which supports cross-border content production, including regional multimedia packages titled “Neighbors.” “Neighbors” provides audiences new opportunities to see how their neighbors are dealing with similar challenges.
We are looking to partner with authors from Eastern Europe, the Balkans, and the Caucasus to create stories for these packages.
- What we are looking for?
We are looking for partners to produce packages that contains at least two stories. These stories should combine multiple content formats (e.g. video, photos, infographics, interactive maps, quizzes, and other appropriate tools). Examples of products could include documentaries, video reports, interviews, longreads, and others, and include perspective from at least two countries involved in the project. These countries are: Albania, Bosnia, Montenegro, Republic of North Macedonia, Serbia, Kosovo, Moldova, Ukraine, Armenia and Georgia.
Each “Neighbors” package will cover a single story of public interest (e.g. politics, elections, economics, business, environment, education, corruption, the European integration and international affairs, emigration, minorities - including people with disabilities, health, social welfare, agriculture, conflicts, and others). Applicants are free to propose story ideas they would be interested in covering.
All produced stories will be distributed by the producer and through the network of participating media if they are interested.
Interested candidates can submit applications in the following two formats:
- Original cross-border production (with or without travel)
A candidate can propose to produce stories about a common issue in two or three countries. Developments in these countries will either be integrated in all stories or each story will focus on one of the two or three countries. Stories will either be produced through extensive on-site reporting with the help of collaborators, e.g. free-lance journalists or by a team of reporters from that media that visits another country/two countries to produce stories.
The teams will receive grants of 4,000 to 7,000 USD.
- Dual cross-border production (matching grants)
Two candidates in two countries will receive matching grants of up to 3,000 USD each to produce stories about a common issue in their respective countries collaboratively. Funding will be awarded directly to each organization. Under this opportunity, partner media organizations or individuals will lead reporting in their countries. In their applications, candidates have to demonstrate that they have a partner in another country. Travel for this type of grant is not needed because of the strong partnership in another country.
Each package should be submitted to the “Neighbors” production team in two formats:
- A “ready-to-go” version (includes all complete materials in a local language, all videos subtitled, in a format and quality appropriate for publication);
- A raw/editable version (includes scripts of all videos and infographics, all videos without titles/subtitles, infographics and other materials in editable formats).
- Who can apply?
This solicitation is designed for media organizations and production houses; however, Internews will also accept and consider applications from qualified freelancers who can demonstrate strong capability to deliver requested project deliverables.
Every candidate may submit up to 2 applications (one in each category).
Applicants will have:
- At least 3 years of experience in media content production;
- Proven ability to produce journalistic materials that incorporate multiple content formats; applicants should submit published samples (infographics, videos, images, photo reports, articles, quizzes, etc.);
- Experience of working in other countries or with partners located in other countries will be a great advantage;
- Flexibility and ability to work under the pressure of deadlines.
- How will the application be submitted?
Applications shall be emailed in English language to EE-SIMEE-Applications@internews.org by April 15th, 2019 at 6.00 PM.
Please state the name of the country and organization in the subject of the mail.
Contact: Matija Vasiljević, +382 67 239 269, firstname.lastname@example.org
- What are the budget parameters?
The total grant pool for cross-border production grants is 28,000 USD. Individual grants amount will be decided by the projects’ steering committee. Examples of costs that are covered by these grants include: production expenses, salaries, travel costs for the creative teams and other relevant costs.
- What other support can applicants expect?
The Internews regional editorial board will provide grantees production and editorial support. Selected teams will receive additional help (ex. training on video, closer support from national editor on editing) as needed based on the proposed product and the outlet’s needs. The support will be offered remotely/online or on-site.
- What is expected out of successful awardee?
The selected authors will produce “Neighbors” packages in accordance with deadlines and production concepts established in partnership with organizers and project producers.
Specifically, awardees will:
- Finalize the production concept to be approved by project producers;
- Send creative teams (part of selected authors’ group) on a production trips to countries of interest to work on their topics (if applicable);
- Work closely with local and regional producers/mentors of the “Neighbors” project;
- Produce the materials (shooting and editing video; writing texts; production of infographics and other components of multimedia packages) in line with set deadlines, production concepts and branding rules of the project;
- Submit produced materials to regional producer.
Internews assume the right to publish or/and translate “Neighbors” multimedia packages and made those available for publication/broadcasting to media outlets in projects’ countries.
- Production Schedule
The selected authors will be given up to 3 months to prepare their packages. The order of production of materials and the deadlines will be determined in partnership with organizers after the winners are announced. Cross-border stories will be produced between May 2019 and June 2020.
- How does the selection work?
The competition will be held in two phases:
- Applicants will submit a simple application form (attached) with short story pitches and explanation of which story/grant types they apply for, anticipated budget needs, partners, etc.
- Within three weeks of the initial submission, applicants will be notified whether they were selected to proceed or not. Shortlisted candidates will be invited to submit a formal application with more detail about the proposed project, topic, budget, and requested assistance from project resources.
Applications will be evaluated by local and regional experts based on:
- The quality of the technical offer (reputation, capacity, originality of the pitch, etc.), including completion of all mandatory elements of the application (90%);
- The quality of the financial offer (10%).
Application Questions and Answers
Q. Do we have to air or publish our materials produced with the support of this grant as part of the “Neighbors” brand?
A. No, you do not have air or publish your stories under the project logo and brand of “Neighbors.”
Q. Do we have editorial freedom in the production of the stories?
A. Yes, selected media organization will produce stories about issues that are relevant to their audiences. The project team will provide technical and editorial assistance if needed.
Q. How will the packages/stories will be published?
A. If the awardee is a media organization, it can publish the story on its own publishing platform. If the awardee is a production house or a freelancer, it can partner with another media organization to publish the content.
Q. Why is a raw/editable version of the package is required?
A. The content – both raw and publication-ready – produced under this grant opportunity will be made available to all participating partners. These partners may republish or rebroadcast publication-ready content while others may use a few elements of raw content to integrate into their stories. This access to content will allow all participating partners access to unique content to strengthen their stories.
Q. Can a media outlet/author submit more than one application?
A. Yes, a media outlet can submit up to two applications, one in each of the format detailed in the TOR.
Q. How will applicants be notified that they made it to the second phase of the selection process?
A. Internews will get in touch with semi-finalists and as well as with media outlets that did not make it into the second round.
Q. Will media outlets receive support from Internews in finding and contacting media partners in other countries to submit dual projects?
A. Internews can assist media outlets in their search of media partners in other countries.
Q. What support can Internews provide to teams during the production process?
A. Internews will not be able to assist teams logistically during their cross-border (or any other) type projects. However, it will provide editorial advice and assistance as requested.
Q. If selected, can we apply for additional funds from other donors?
A. Yes, co-funding is acceptable. Authors will inform Internews if other donors were approached or co-funding was awarded.