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IJ4EU fund opens new calls for watchdog journalism in Europe


IJ4EU fund opens new calls for watchdog journalism in Europe

Picture of Zlatina Siderova
Zlatina Siderova — Programme Lead Grants
February 01, 2024

Grants of up to €50,000 are available for investigative journalists seeking to collaborate across borders.

The Investigative Journalism for Europe (IJ4EU) programme opened 2 new calls for proposals on February 1, 2024, inviting newsrooms and individual journalists to apply for funding to collaborate on transnational investigations.

IJ4EU’s Investigation Support Scheme will provide grants of up to €50,000 to allow journalistic teams of any type — including newsrooms and specialist investigative outlets — to team up across frontiers on ambitious projects.

Additionally, IJ4EU’s Freelancer Support Scheme will provide grants of up to €20,000 to cross-border investigative teams made up predominantly of freelance journalists.

The deadline for applications to both schemes is eight weeks after the launch of the call, on 31 March at 23:59 CEST. Both schemes will have subsequent calls in the autumn of 2024 and early 2025.

A previously funded project by IJ4eu. Image by Hanna Jarzabek

The IJ4EU fund will provide €2 million in grants to support cross-border investigative journalism as a public good during the 2024/25 edition of the programme.

Around €1.5 million will be distributed through the Investigation Support Scheme and €500,000 through the Freelancer Support Scheme.

To date, IJ4EU has disbursed more than €3.5 million in grants to cross-border projects, allowing hundreds of journalists to conduct ambitious investigations on topics resonating with tens of millions of people across Europe and beyond.

Who can apply?

The geographical eligibility criteria are the same for both schemes.

Applications must be submitted by teams with journalists based in at least two European countries that have signed up to the full cross-sectoral strand of the European Union’s Creative Europe Programme, which provides core funding for IJ4EU.

Eligible countries include all 27 EU member states and the following non-EU countries: Albania, Bosnia and Herzegovina, Georgia, Iceland, Liechtenstein, Montenegro, North Macedonia, Norway, Serbia and Ukraine.

Please note that eligibility is based on residency, not nationality.

For more information, see the grants section and frequently asked questions.

Map 24 25 Geo Eligibility ij4eu

Projects must focus on topics of cross-border relevance. Investigations on all subjects will be considered. 

The Freelancer Support Scheme is designed for teams whose members operate predominantly outside of newsroom structures. In addition to money, it offers an extra cushion of tailored assistance through mentoring and training. The Investigation Support Scheme is open to journalistic teams of any configuration that mainly need funding to carry out their investigations. Both schemes come with practical and editorial assistance, legal support, and the chance to participate in specialist conferences.

Teams working in all media types — including print, broadcast, online media, documentary filmmaking and multi-platform story-telling — will be considered. Projects must aim to be published by media outlets in at least 2 countries.

IJ4EU grants may be used to cover nearly any type of cost necessary for the production of journalistic content. This includes salary and human resource costs for both employed journalists and freelance journalists, research costs, travel costs, translation costs and administrative costs.

Grants under both schemes are awarded by independent juries made up of distinguished senior editors, investigative journalists and journalism experts. Read more about the selection process and criteria.

Full details about both funding schemes and how to apply and information about past funded projects can be found on the IJ4EU website. Read the FAQs about applying.

Do you still have questions? Join an info webinar on February 7 at 11 CET to learn all about the programme.

About IJ4EU

As threats to press freedom and pluralism multiply, the IJ4EU fund is committed to supporting investigative reporting as a public good in the European Union and on the bloc’s doorstep. 

IJ4EU is managed by a consortium of four non-governmental organisations: the International Press Institute (IPI), the European Journalism Centre (EJC), the European Centre for Press and Media Freedom (ECPMF) and Arena for Journalism in Europe (Arena).

During open calls for proposals, Arena will run public Cross-Border Masterclasses aimed at helping journalists craft work plans for investigations and write stronger grant applications. Arena will also provide “matchmaking assistance” for journalists seeking collaboration partners in other countries.

The next Cross-Border Masterclass will be on February 15 from 9:30 to 12:30 CET. Register for the free half-day event.

The IJ4EU programme is co-funded by the European Commission’s Creative Europe Programme. It receives additional funding from philanthropic foundations, including Fritt Ord and Isocrates Foundation.

The programme maintains complete independence from donors in selecting projects and strictly guarantees the editorial independence of all grantees.


Header photo by Vitalie Călugăreanu, a project previously funded by IJ4EU.


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