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Strengthening Media Oversight of the Extractive Sectors in Ghana

AWARD CRITERIA AND APPLICATION PROCEDURE

                            FOR INVESTIGATIVE REPORTING GRANTS

                                                                                                         April 3, 2014

AIM:

These grants aim to ensure that high quality investigative stories about the extractive sectors of oil, gas, and mining are reported consistently by the Ghanaian media and that they generate constructive public debate and action by people in position to cause change. The grants will fund individual journalists, selected through a competitive process, to pursue promising ideas and produce compelling stories using applicable journalistic tools, techniques, and resources.

AWARD CRITERIA:

A selection panel of seasoned journalists will evaluate story proposals that hold promise in terms of:

  • Originality
  • Relevance and significance
  • Enterprise
  • Investigative potential
  • Analysis and depth
  • Potential to promote accountability in public policy and decision-making in the extractive industry

GRANT AMOUNT:

Interested journalists may apply for the equivalent of up US$ 1,000 in Ghana Cedis for one story proposal at a time. In exceptional cases, journalists with ambitious but tenable proposals may be allocated grants above the ceiling for a single application.

APPLICATION CYCLE AND STORY DEADLINES (2014):

Applications for the first round of grants will be received from April 15 to April 30. Grants for the successful applicants in this round will be awarded on May 15 and the stories will be due by July 15. Applications for the second round of grants will be received from August 1 to August 15. Grants for the successful applicants in this round will be awarded on August 30 and the stories will be due by October 30.

APPLICATION PROCEDURE:

To apply, write to glugalambi@revenuewatch.org and africatemprwi@revenuewatch.org with the following:

1. A concise proposal of not more than two pages stating the specific issue or subject you wish to investigate and the justification for pursuing the story.

2. An estimated budget which, for example, itemizes your anticipated expenses such as travel, accommodation, meals and incidentals, research, telephone, internet, printing and photocopying, etc.

3. A work plan detailing the steps and timeline you will follow from start to submission of the completed story to your editor or editorial supervisor.

4. A signed endorsement letter from your editor or editorial supervisor approving the story proposal and supporting the assignment if the application is successful. A standard letter will be provided for this purpose. You are required – and it is your responsibility – to present your story proposal to your editor or editorial supervisor for approval prior to submitting the application.

POINTS TO NOTE:

  • You may apply for another grant to do a new story only after completing the story for which a previous grant is outstanding.
  • Your story will be considered completed only when it is submitted and acknowledged by your media organization. As proof of submission, you will ask the editor or editorial supervisor who received your story to confirm with an email to the address below.
  • The story is your independent professional work and you are accountable for it to your media organization which approved the proposal. The role of RWI-NRC and its partners is to support your good story ideas with funding that complements the resources of your media organization; it is also to provide you with access to mentors who will be available if you wish and choose to seek their independent professional advice and guidance. Do not therefore send a copy of your story to RWI-NRC until it is published or broadcast.
  • Mentors will be available to advise and guide you through the execution of your assignment. The mentors will only provide advice if and when it is solicited. Further information about the mentorship arrangements will be communicated when a grant is awarded.
  • You are expected to observe the professional ethics, principles, and standards of journalism practice, including applicable rules, regulations, and laws.

BACKGROUND:

The goal of the Revenue Watch Institute-Natural Resource Charter capacity development program for journalists in Ghana and other countries is effective and consistent oversight by the media of extractive resources and revenues, contributing to their improved use for the public good. Journalists can fulfill their oversight role only through informed analysis and reporting, high quality and thoughtful comment, and investigative efforts. In turn, this requires solid reporting skills, understanding technical issues, and access to information and experts. Since 2010, RWI-NRC has run the program in partnership with Penplusbytes.

STAR-Ghana is supporting the training program to consolidate and sustain its results and gains of the last three years. Within the context of increasing accountability and responsiveness of government, traditional authorities, and private enterprises to Ghanaian citizens, STAR-Ghana aims to increase the influence of civil society organizations, parliament, and the media in the governance of public goods and service delivery.

 

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Reporting Oil and Gas project was launched on 4th June 2009atTakoradi, Western Region, Ghana by Penplusbytes (PPB – www.penplusbytes.org) with the vision of providing a one stop online information and knowledge about Ghana’s oil and gas sector
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