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UN Ocean Conference 2020 Fellowships

UN Ocean Conference Fellowships 2020
Application Deadline
9 March 2020, 09:00 AM (Europe/London)
Extended Deadline
Application closed
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As a part of the Ocean Media Initiative carried out by Internews’ Earth Journalism Network (EJN), we are pleased to announce a new Fellowship program for journalists interested in covering the upcoming United Nations Ocean Conference in Lisbon, Portugal, in June 2020.

The UN Ocean Conference 2020 is focused on supporting the implementation of Sustainable Development Goal 14 (SDG14), which is to “Conserve and sustainably use the oceans, seas and marine resources for sustainable development.” This year's conference will be focused on how science and innovation can be used to scale up action on ocean conservation. This will be the second UN conference focused on SDG14, with the last event held in 2017.

Selected Fellows will be required to attend the entire length of the conference in Lisbon from 2-6 June. Fellows will also benefit from two days of orientation and special briefings prior to the conference.

EJN will cover non-refundable economy-class airfare, accommodation, meals and transportation costs of selected Fellows. We will also facilitate the press accreditation process and provide any other support relating to the trip. Please note that the process of obtaining any necessary visas is the Fellow's individual responsibility. Visa costs can be reimbursed, however.

Specially designed activities, including orientation sessions, will explore the key issues to be addressed at the ocean conference. Selected Fellows will also have the opportunity to join a field trip related to the conference themes, attend daily breakfast briefings and interviews with high-level officials. They will also receive editorial support from senior journalists with experience in covering these types of events.

This Fellowship is made possible by funding provided by the Calouste Gulbenkian Foundation (UK Branch).


Selected participants must be professional journalists or represent an established media house. Please note that applications are open to journalists from any country, but we expect to select:

  • 4 Fellows from a Portuguese-speaking country;
  • 1 Fellow to be from the UK;
  • The remaining Fellows to be from a country in the Global South;


Applicants must also:

  • Be available to arrive in Lisbon on May 30 so they can attend orientation and stay until June 7; 
  • Commit to participate in all Fellowship activities;
  • Produce published stories as a result of their participation in this Fellowship. While we don't require a letter from your editor supporting your application, we will give preference to those who can show an indication that their work will appear in a media outlet.


We fully respect the editorial independence of all Fellows, and throughout the conference Fellows are free to report as they see fit. We do ask, however, that in addition to the requirements above Fellows agree to allow EJN to cross-post all the stories they file on the UN Ocean Conference on the Earth Journalism Network's website and its local and regional partner sites (Fellows' home media outlet can first publish or broadcast the story). Stories can be sent in a native language as long as they are accompanied by a short English synopsis. However, a good command of English is a prerequisite for participation in Fellowship activities.

Criteria for evaluating applicants include the prospective Fellow's demonstrated experience covering marine issues and other environmental topics, their interest in continued coverage of these issues, and the audience reach of the proposed media outlet.

Application Process

  • Click on the “Apply Now” button on the top right of the page. 
  • If you have an existing account, you’ll need to log in. If not, you must register for an account by clicking “Join the Network” on the top right of the page.
  • 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.
  • You must submit two samples of stories or links to relevant stories. You’ll be asked to upload these once you start the application process so please get them ready beforehand.
  • Applications submitted after the deadline will not be considered.


If you encounter any difficulties with submitting your application or have questions about the grants, please email [email protected].

Banner image by Sebastian Pena Lambarri on Unsplash