The Organized Crime and Corruption Reporting Project (OCCRP) has won the 2020 Skoll Award for Social Entrepreneurship, given to a select group of entrepreneurs whose innovations have had a significant, proven impact on some of the world’s most pressing problems. OCCRP is a long-time partner of ICFJ.
OCCRP is the first media organization to receive the Skoll Award in its 21-year history. The award includes a $1.5 million core support grant over the next three years.
OCCRP is a network of investigative journalists that was co-founded by former ICFJ Knight Fellow Paul Radu and veteran journalist Drew Sullivan. It connects 45 nonprofit investigative centers, scores of journalists and several major regional news organizations in 34 countries across Europe, Africa, Asia, the Middle East and Latin America.
“As the world fights the coronavirus pandemic, it’s more important than ever that citizens around the world recognize the corrupt leaders and criminal networks profiting at their peril,” said Radu. “We are incredibly grateful to the Skoll Foundation for recognizing OCCRP and the important role investigative journalism plays in helping the public hold power to account.”
OCCRP has been covering the crisis on its “Crime, Corruption and Coronavirus” page.
OCCRP has played a major role in award-winning investigative projects such as the Panama Papers and the Paradise Papers that have shone a light on corrupt practices around the world, forcing heads of state to resign and governments to spring into action to place greater accountability measures.
“As independent media continues to be threatened around the world, this alliance with the Skoll Foundation will help us empower the small, nonprofit outlets in our member center network that in some cases are the last independent voices in their countries,” said Sullivan.
Co-founders Radu and Sullivan were to receive the award at the Skoll World Forum in Oxford, United Kingdom, but because of the coronavirus pandemic, the event has been moved to a virtual forum. The multi-day forum will be live through April 3, here.