Google News Initiative: Innovation ChallengeDeadline: July 15, 2019
The Google News Initiative (GNI) Innovation Challenge in North America will focus on creative projects that generate revenue and/or increase audience engagement for local journalism. The Challenge will focus on projects that help build a more sustainable ecosystem for local news in North America through supporting creative projects that generate revenue and/or increase audience engagement for local news. All ideas are welcome, but projects must have clear indicators showing the impact of the project from a user perspective and/or for a business perspective (e.g., audience indicators, business plan when relevant). Successful projects will also need to be delivered within one year.
Projects can be experimental but must be for sites that are already in operation at the time of application and must have measurable, well-defined goals. Projects will be evaluated against four main criteria:
- Impact on the news ecosystem: Projects should demonstrate potential for significant positive impact on the creation of new revenue streams and/or change the way people consume digital news.
- Innovation: Preferred projects will be innovative (e.g., use of technology, business model, new reader engagement approaches) and transformative for the applicant and for users.
- Feasibility: Project should demonstrate clear indicators and metrics or even a business plan, when relevant, and set out key risks and mitigation steps.
- Inspiration: How can the project help news organizations learn from each other? Willingness to share knowledge, open source code, and/or contribute to the improvement of the ecosystem overall.
Amount: Awards of up to $300,000 and up to 70% of the total project cost will be made.
Eligibility: The Challenge is open to organizations of every size – digital natives, startups, nongovernment organizations (NGOs), industry organizations, broadcasters, traditional news organizations, freelancers, and sole proprietors – that aim to produce innovative, original journalism and to enlighten citizens with trustworthy journalistic content, and whose projects focus on encouraging a more sustainable news ecosystem. Organizations must be incorporated or based in one of the eligible countries in North America.