The stories produced by the ten journalists who participated in the 2012 Balkan Fellowship for Journalistic Excellence are now available in the online publication, Communities – The New Ties Reshaping the Balkans.
The publication provides a snapshot of the past year in south-eastern Europe, capturing some important truths behind the news.
Original research by the journalists focused on issues ranging from religious radicalism, the exploitation of migrant workers in the EU, football hooliganism, environmental activism, bad privatisation deals, and the exclusion of youth from a politicised job market. The stories were grouped under the annual theme, Communities.
The journalists were selected through open competition to receive funding and professional support that would help them conduct cross-border research into a topic of regional and EU significance.
The stories produced under the programme were re-published by prominent outlets in the region,as well as by international media including The Guardian, The New Statesman, The Atlantic, The Christian Science Monitor, Der Standard, Neue Zürcher Zeitung, The Huffington Post and the EU Observer.
The work of the fellowship and of its editor, Neil Arun, has been shortlisted for the 2013 European Press Prize in Amsterdam.
One of the participating journalists, Eldin Hadzovic, has also received an award from UNICEF for his fellowship story which examined the failure of Bosnia’s orphanage system.
“The publication of the fellows’ articles in the most important media in the region and internationally is clear proof that this project is a worthy venture,” said Remzi Lami, the director of the Albanian Media Institute and a member of the programme’s selection committee.
The 10 articles from 2012 were re-published by more than 400 outlets, supporting the fellowship’s ultimate goal – to promote and reward excellence in journalism.
The new cycle of the programme will be launched on January 28, when journalists will be invited to submit applications under the annual topic for 2013, Integrity.
The Pulitzer Prize-winning US journalist and editor, John Ullmann, was the key trainer at BIRN’s investigative journalism training session in Berovo, eastern Macedonia, at the weekend.
BIRN Serbia and Pro Concept held their fifth national budget forum at the National Assembly in Belgrade on 27 November, where panelists and participants offered their opinions and debated the proposed 2014 budget and the projected outcomes of the Serbian administration’s budgetary policy.
Journalists received bespoke investigative training as they prepared major cross-border stories into crime and corruption in the Balkans.
BIRN’s “Life in Kosovo” has been recognized for reporting on women in a TV programme.
Bardh Shkreli, a journalist for BIRN Kosovo, has won a third-place award in November from the German Society for International Cooperation, GIZ and the Association of Professional Journalists of Kosovo for education reporting.
Romania’s national journalistic competition Superscrieri has given awards to Elena Stancu and Vlad Odobescu, both fellows this year of the Balkan Fellowship for Journalistic Excellence.
Eight journalists from Bosnia and Herzegovina, BIH, Croatia, and Serbia participated in a weeklong study visit to the International Criminal Tribunal for the former Yugoslavia, ICTY, in October. The Tribunal's Outreach Programme organised the visit in cooperation with BIRN BiH.
BIRN Macedonia announces a call for journalists for an upcoming training session for investigative journalists.
Participants in this year’s Balkan Fellowship for Journalistic Excellence will meet for their final seminar and awards ceremony in Zagreb, Croatia from December 11-14.