Frequently Asked Questions

WHAT IS THE PRIMARY GOAL OF THE KNIGHT INTERNATIONAL JOURNALISM FELLOWSHIPS?

The Knight International Journalism Fellowships are designed to instill a culture of news innovation and experimentation worldwide. The goal is to seed new ideas and services that deepen coverage, expand news delivery and engage citizens in the editorial process. Fellows partner with newsrooms, startups and other organizations to help them adopt or invent technology that engages and informs the public. They will work in key areas such as mobile services, data mining, storytelling and social media. With the help of our Fellows, local journalists have improved environmental, business and health coverage, and uncovered corruption and mismanagement, improving living conditions in their societies. Each project is designed to ensure that the impacts and achievements last beyond the Fellowship.

CAN I USE THIS FELLOWSHIP TO FUND MY EDUCATION OR GIVE ME THE SKILLS I NEED TO ADVANCE MY CAREER?

This Fellowship cannot be used to fund the education or development of the Fellow. Our Fellows are project visionaries and leaders. This is not a professional development opportunity.

WHERE DO FELLOWS WORK?

We work in Latin America/Caribbean, Central Europe/Eurasia, Asia/Pacific, Africa, and the Middle East. We target countries where there is an opportunity to produce measurable outcomes.

WHAT DO FELLOWS DO?

During the one-year Fellowship, Fellows focus on one or more of the four target portfolios – mobile, data, social media/networks and multimedia storytelling. ICFJ expects Fellows to work on multiple, complementary projects. For example, in Latin America, a Fellow is:

  • Launching a Media Factory to seed new, online media outlets
  • Expanding Hacks/Hackers across Latin America to inspire the adoption and creation of news apps and build connections among journalists, designers, and developers. The goal: to improve the quality of media and engage audiences
  • Implementing data bootcamps across the continent

Knight Fellows also act as “thought leaders,” sharing their experiences and lessons learned on the International Journalists’ Network (IJNet) website, www.ijnet.org, and at top conferences focusing on media and information innovation.

Their projects must produce measurable results. For more information, see our current projects and visit www.ijnet.org.

CAN I PROPOSE A FELLOWSHIP?

We welcome Fellowship proposals at any time from potential partners and Fellows. To propose a project, submit a Fellowship proposal. Candidates who wish to propose a project and become a Knight International Journalism Fellow should submit a proposal and a Fellowship application.

WHAT TYPES OF PROPOSALS WILL YOU CONSIDER?

Successful proposals will target news innovation in one or more of the four key Fellowship portfolios. Proposals should outline Fellowships that include multiple, complementary projects. They should clearly state how each of the projects will help to drive a measurable culture of news innovation through adoption, adaptation and creation of new tools, networks and content. We will not consider proposals to train journalists or teach students. We are not likely to consider proposals that need substantial fundraising to achieve their objectives.

HOW CAN I PROPOSE A FELLOWSHIP?

Submit a Fellowship proposal.

Fellowship proposals must clearly answer the following questions:

  • How would you describe this Fellowship and its outcomes in 150 words or less?
  • Where will this Fellowship focus, geographically?
  • What news and societal/civic challenges will this Fellowship address?
  • What opportunities will your Fellowship take advantage of?
  • What projects will be launched to help you achieve the goals of this Fellowship?
  • In what ways will these projects be innovative and unique to this part of the world?
  • How will these projects build on what already exists?
  • What technologies will you help people to adopt, adapt and/or create?
  • Who would be the partners and what resources have they committed to contribute?
  • What will success look like in this Fellowship?
  • How can you demonstrate that this project will drive a lasting culture of news innovation?
  • What language, media and technology skills will the Fellow need to lead this Fellowship?
HOW CAN I BECOME A FELLOW?

Submit a Fellowship proposal and a Fellowship application.

WHAT ARE THE REQUIREMENTS TO BECOME A FELLOW?

Fellow candidates must have the experience and skills necessary to lead these projects, and be able to act as a thought leader for broader influence on media. Typical qualifications:

  • Experience working in newsrooms
  • Experience creating digital- and/or mobile-news media content and strategy
  • Experience managing digital production and innovation teams, while working to tight deadlines
  • Experience incorporating the use of social media and/or data in news media
  • Experience measuring results, such as the impact of content, adoption of technology and audience engagement
  • Success at replicating, adapting and creating technologies to answer local needs
  • Strong leadership skills
  • Ability to communicate program results as a speaker, blogger
  • Strong project- and time-management skills
  • Experience in the target region
  • Fluency (speaking, reading and writing) in the local language of the target country/region
  • Training or coaching experience
HOW CAN I BECOME A PARTNER?

Potential Fellowship partners should submit a Fellowship proposal.

WHAT ARE THE REQUIREMENTS TO BECOME A PARTNER?

Partners must be able to contribute to the Fellowship by providing funding, facilities or other support. Typical partners include local news organizations, NGOs, universities, associations and networks, and technology companies. Support can include:

  • Funding for project development, meetups, workshops
  • Facilities and/or equipment, office/meeting space
  • Access to staff or network members for collaboration (strategic, administrative, training and/or logistical)
  • Ability and commitment to continuing the work of the Fellowship after its completion
IS THERE A DEADLINE FOR APPLICATION SUBMISSIONS?

Applications are accepted throughout the year unless otherwise specified in Fellowship openings.

WHAT IS THE SELECTION PROCESS?

Fellowship applications and proposals are evaluated on a rolling basis. Finalists may be invited to ICFJ's office in Washington, D.C., for interviews. If that is not feasible, they will be interviewed by ICFJ's regional representatives or by phone. Fellows selected for the program attend a week-long orientation program in Washington, D.C.

HOW LONG DOES THE FELLOWSHIP LAST?

Fellowships last at least one year. Fellowships may be extended at the discretion of ICFJ's Knight International staff.

WHAT DOES THE FELLOWSHIP COVER (FINANCIAL, HEALTH, AND BENEFITS)?

During the Fellowship, each Fellow receives an allowance for expenses related to the Fellowship, and an honorarium. Fellows also receive an allowance for health-insurance coverage in their home countries and emergency coverage if they are working outside their home country. Fellows receive two weeks of paid vacation per year.

CAN FELLOWS WORK ON OTHER PROJECTS OR CONTINUE TO WORK AS JOURNALISTS DURING THEIR FELLOWSHIPS?

Fellows are expected to work full-time on their Fellowship projects. Since they are considered business consultants, they may not work as journalists during the Fellowship.

FOR APPLICANTS WHOSE NATIVE LANGUAGE IS NOT ENGLISH: DO I NEED TO TRANSLATE EVERYTHING I SEND IN, INCLUDING MY WORK SAMPLES?

Applications, CVs and resumes should be in English. Relevant work samples or supporting material for project proposals may be in the applicant’s native language. To become a Fellow, professional proficiency in English is required.

If you have additional questions, please contact Program Assistant Luisa Pires Luciano, lpiresluciano@icfj.org.