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Coastal Resilience Story Grants 2023

Call for Proposals

Published on
09 Jan 2023
A landscape view of groynes and rock armour on the Eastchurch beach on the Isle of Sheppey in the United Kingdom, where last year the government announced a record $6.2bn investment in flood and coastal defences
6 February 2023, 11:59 PM, Pacific/Niue (UTC -11) info.ejn [at] internews.org
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Convocatoria de propuestas disponible en: Español
 

EJN is offering reporting grants to journalists worldwide to support the production of in-depth stories that will call attention to coastal resiliency and solutions for coastal issues.

Please read the following sections carefully, as they contain important information on eligibility and the application process.


Overview

Communities living in coastal regions face existential risks due to climate change. Currently, around 40% of the world's population lives within 100 kilometers of a coast, putting them on the frontlines of climate change’s worst impacts. By 2050, the world's 136 largest coastal cities could face damages of between $1.6 to $3.2 trillion from sea level rise alone without adaptation. Even worse, many of them could be partially underwater. The latest IPCC report underscored what communities living on the edge between land and sea have long known: Without deep cuts to emissions, their prospects are "dismal."

Yet, communities and policymakers in coastal areas lack access to information about solutions to build resilience to climate change. Media and other information providers in coastal areas need resources in order to communicate complicated climate change information about coastal issues effectively. Trusted, clear, timely and actionable information is needed to address vulnerabilities associated with climate change and to support building resilience.

To fill this gap, EJN is offering story grants with support from the Kingfisher Foundation to journalists to cover coastal resilience in their communities. These journalists will receive support from journalist mentors and a coastal resilience expert to increase media coverage of this critical issue in their region.

Story themes

We welcome solutions-oriented story ideas on the following topics:

  • Under-reported nature-based solutions, including protection or maintenance of coastal ecosystems such as seagrass, kelp, dunes, marshes, barrier islands, reefs, oysters and more (we have supported many stories on mangroves, an important topic, but will be looking for story ideas on other coastal ecosystems)
  • Strategies for beach stabilization and erosion prevention, and the impacts on local ecosystems
  • Policy-based coastal management techniques, including disaster management and early-warning systems, coastal zoning, government adaptation plans and more
  • Marine/coastal protected areas, including their long-term effectiveness and impact on Indigenous or local communities
  • Coastal conservation finance, including insurance schemes, debt-for-nature swaps, the costs of nature-based versus concrete or “gray” solutions, finance for biodiversity and other initiatives to finance coastal solutions
  • Blue carbon and the blue economy, including whether and how carbon offsets, tourism or other coastal blue economy initiatives can bring real solutions
  • The relationship between biodiversity loss, climate change and coastal resilience, including changing fish migration routes and food insecurity
  • Planned retreat, resettlement or relocation, including case studies on existing programs as well as investigations into coastal climate gentrification, cultural displacement and more
  • Risk management, monitoring and evaluation and other evidence-based strategies for coastal communities to understand and track coastal resilience
  • The intersections between public health and coastal resilience, including solutions for saltwater intrusion, the impacts of sea level rise on pollution and more.

All stories must have a solutions-focused angle; stories without this will not be considered.

Proposals that focus on topics or stories that have not been widely covered are preferred. Issues that have already received a lot of media coverage or don't provide unique angles to environmental challenges are less likely to be selected.

Eligibility

Applicants can be from any country in the world; applicants from coastal countries reporting on their home communities are preferred.

Please note that journalists who have already received a Coastal Resilience reporting grant from EJN in 2022 or who have an active grant as part of any EJN program are not eligible for this opportunity. Journalists who have received EJN support in the past are welcome to apply, and their past performance will be taken into account.

Groups of journalists are eligible, particularly from different countries seeking to produce a cross-border project. However, the application must be made in the name of one lead applicant. Lead applicants are responsible for communicating with EJN and receiving funds on the group’s behalf, if awarded. Groups of journalists looking to produce cross-border stories will be favorably viewed by the judging panel.

For the purposes of this grant opportunity, we will only be accepting applications in English and Spanish. Unfortunately, we do not have the capacity to consider applications in other languages at this time. Applicants must either have a working understanding of English or have a translator available to assist with communication with Internews staff.

Applications are open to journalists working in any medium (online, print, television, radio) and other expert media practitioners with professional reporting experience and a history of covering environmental issues. We encourage applications from freelance reporters and staff from all types of media organizations – international, national, local and community-based.

EJN reserves the right to disqualify applicants from consideration if they have been found to have engaged in unethical or improper professional conduct.


Story logistics

We plan to issue grants of approximately $1,200 each by late February 2023 with the expectation that all stories will be published by November 30, 2023 at the latest. Applicants should consider this timeline when drafting their work plan.  

Safety:  We encourage reporters to follow best practices for Covid-19 when out in the field so you do not endanger yourself or the people you’re interviewing. If needed, you should include any Covid-related costs, such as tests or personal protective equipment, in your budget.   

Language of publication:  Stories can be produced in any language. We encourage stories that are produced in local languages for local audiences. However, applicants who intend to write or produce stories in their local language need to also include an English translation. Please include the cost for translation in the budget, if necessary.  

Story budget: All applicants are required to provide a detailed budget with justification for the amount requested using the template provided below. We ask that the budgets be reasonable and account for costs necessary for reporting, such as travel, accommodation, translation and data visualization.  

We will consider larger grant amounts for stories using innovative approaches that may be more resource-intensive and time-consuming.   

We expect that proposals will largely reflect what equipment the applicant already has access to (including cameras, drones, lighting, tripods, etc.) and will not consider budgets that heavily focus on purchasing new equipment.   

We will consider a stipend for the reporters’ salary (not to exceed more than 30% of the total budget), particularly if the applicant is a freelancer. 

Acknowledgement of EJN support: Published stories and/or broadcasts must disclose EJN support by including this tagline: “This story was produced with support from Internews’ Earth Journalism Network.” 

Republication rights: Those who are awarded grants are free to publish or broadcast their stories first in their affiliated media as long as Internews’ EJN, its partners and the grant funder are also given rights to edit, publish, broadcast and distribute them freely.   


Judging criteria

Applicants should consider the following points when devising their story proposals.

  • Relevance: Does the proposal meet the criteria and objectives of the call? Why does this story matter and to whom? Is the main idea, context and overall value to the target audience clearly defined?
  • Angle: If the story has been covered, does your proposal bring new insights to the topic or offer a fresh angle?
  • Impact: Does the proposal have a compelling narrative or investigative element that will inform and engage, draw attention, trigger debate and urge action?
  • Innovative storytelling: The use of creative approaches, multimedia and data visualization will be considered a plus.


Application process

  • Click the 'Apply now' button at the top of the page.  
  • If you have an existing account, you'll need to log in. Since we recently updated our website, you might have to reset your password by clicking the “Forgot password?” link in the log in page. If you don’t have an account, you must register by clicking “Log in” on the top right of the page and click the “Sign up” link at the bottom of the page that opens. Click here for detailed instructions on how to create an account, and here for detailed instructions on how to reset your password.  
  • If you start the application and want to come back and complete it later, you can click 'Save Draft.' To return to the draft, you'll need to go back to the opportunity and click 'Apply now' again to finalize the application. Applications should provide a detailed budget in an Excel spreadsheet with justification for the amount requested. Download the budget template now by clicking on this link. 


If you encounter difficulties with submitting your application or have questions about the grants, please email [email protected] Do not contact any other Internews email regarding this opportunity, as we will not receive it.

Applications submitted after the deadline will not be considered.


Banner image: A landscape view of groynes and rock armor on the Eastchurch beach on the Isle of Sheppey in the United Kingdom, where last year the government announced a record $6.2bn investment in flood and coastal defenses / Credit: Gaia Lamperti for Al Jazeera.

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