Local Cross-Border Journalism Grant Details

Eligibility Criteria

  • Local Cross-Border investigative teams of at least two journalists and/or media outlets can submit a proposal for local journalistic investigations in Europe. Only applicants who are legally residing in eligible countries are permitted to receive funding.

  • The applicants must be professional freelance journalists or media outlets. Personal references and/or references to earlier work are essential in that respect.

    Media outlets must be legal entities officially incorporated at least one year before the application deadline of the grant call.

  • The investigation proposal must concern local cross-border investigative journalism in geographical Europe. The aim of this grant programme is to stimulate local journalists and media outlets to compare with other regions and cities in other countries that face similar problems or challenges, which are eminently European issues.

  • The result of the investigation must be published by at least two professional media outlets in at least two different European countries. Letters of intent (LOI) for publication from at least two professional media outlets are required.

  • Investigative journalism published by professional media in any form is eligible, no matter whether print, online, broadcast or cross-media. All journalistic end products qualify for a grant: newspaper and magazine articles, radio and television documentaries and series, photo-reportages and books, podcasts and journalistic non-fiction books.



A grant can cover two types of costs:

1. Working time of the journalists to conduct their investigation. (please note: working time will need to be substantiated with a timesheet)

2. Expenses:

  • Direct investigation expenses such as travel, visa, accommodation, translation, fixers, access to pay-databases, freedom of information (FOI) requests, legal screening, insurance, etc., ...
  • Following expenses cannot be covered by the grants: overhead, office costs, investments goods (such as IT hardware, mobile phones, cameras, …), production costs, food and beverage, per diems.
  • By collaborating with journalists on the ground you can reduce your carbon footprint. Why travel when you can collaborate with a journalist from another country who has the know-how and knowledge?

Applications must include a budget calculation according to the budget template.

Please read the instructions tab in the budget template carefully.



  • Successful applicants who need support in a specific aspect of the investigation can request a mentor. The mentor is assigned by Journalismfund Europe from its pool of mentors (consisting of experienced investigative journalists from different continents), in consultation with the team.
  • Mentors are selected based on either the focus of the investigation or the need for competencies in a specific skill. They can e.g. assist with cross-border collaboration, identifying sources, research methods, storytelling, dissemination, project management, etc.
  • A mentor gives advice, shares knowledge and can act as a sounding board. S/he does not fully participate in the investigation. The average amount of mentoring days per project is three, the maximum five.
  • The mentor is paid by Journalismfund Europe. The applicants do not need to include the mentor in their budget proposal.

Deadlines and Timing

  • For this grant programme there are 6 application rounds scheduled over a period of two years.
  • The fifth call application deadline is CLOSED.
  • Subscribe to Journalismfund Europe’s newsletter to keep informed and receive the latest grant opportunities.
  • After the application deadline, Journalismfund Europe checks that formalities are in order and may call for more information from applicants. This usually takes one week.
  • After this the applications go to the jury for assessment.
  • Applicants are usually informed about the jury decision around 40 days after the application deadline.

Assessment Criteria

The jury will assess the applications based on the following criteria:

  • Relevance for the thematic focus of this programme
  • Added value compared to mainstream coverage
  • Cross-border aspect
  • Quality of research methods and presentation/storytelling
  • Feasibility of the investigation, timeline and budget
  • Team structure and experience of the applicants
  • Work effort requirement
  • Pooling research capacity and knowledge
  • Watchdog of institutions, policies and money

Finally, the jury will also take into consideration the variety within the global selection of granted projects. This means diversity in terms of:

  • region (both regarding stories and team members)
  • topics
  • methods and approaches
  • publication forms
  • team composition


  • The applications are assessed by an independent rotating jury of experts in investigative (local) journalism from Europe. The jury members are chosen by Journalismfund Europe.
  • The jury decides independently about the granting of the submitted project proposals, based on the assessment criteria and the available budget predetermined by Journalismfund Europe.
  • Both Journalismfund Europe and the jury are bound to strict confidentiality – before, during and after evaluation of the proposals.
  • The jury members remain anonymous until they leave the jury. This is to safeguard both the independence of the jury process and the confidentiality of the investigations. After their mandate is finished, the names of the jury members are made public by Journalismfund Europe.
  • Jury members are bound to Journalismfund Europe's strict conflict of interest policy, which is designed to ensure the highest standards in terms of ethical conduct and to ensure the independence and objectivity of decision making.

Grant Conditions

  • The grantees and all other persons involved in the project have to endorse the principles of the Global Charter of Ethics for Journalists as well as the national codes of ethics that are in force.
  • Every grantee signs an Agreement with Journalismfund Europe that states the mutual arrangements and conditions.
  • Grants are paid in two instalments: the first (2/3) upon signature of the Agreement, the second (1/3) after publication of the project and submission and approval of the financial report and supporting documents.
  • Grants are paid in euro. They are only paid out on the bank accounts of the grantees, not via other money transfer services. Any bank charges for international payments are carried by Journalismfund Europe, except for exchange rates.
  • Any journalistic product that is the result of the supported project explicitly has to mention the support from Journalismfund Europe.
  • Applicants need to consent with Journalismfund Europe’s general grant rules.

More questions?

Consult our FAQ or contact us.