On July 27th, we officially announced the 30 winning initiatives that will implement their innovative ideas in the media and journalistic sector with the financial support of Stars4Media. The 185 media professionals from 22 different European countries will cooperate across borders to bring their ideas to life in the timeframe of 15th of September until 15th of January 2022.

 

During this time, we will proudly introduce all winning initiatives in a series under the umbrella of six distinct macrotopics:

The series will give an exclusive glimpse into the details of the proposals, including interviews with the initiative leaders.

 

Once published, the articles can be found in the news and press releases section on this website. To stay up to date, you can also check out our LinkedIn page, where the articles will be announced.

TikTok for Journalism

The initiative seeks to find new income models for TikTok production, widen the overall business model to a different social media platform and reach out to new audiences, in particular young people aged 15 to 30.  Are We Europe aims to inspire, engage and inform young people in Europe, in order to ensure they are aware of the power they hold and the ability they have to effectuate positive change. Topics such as the “European identity” will be addressed.

Media organisation(s) with country of origin: Are We Europe (NL), CIVINC (NL), Nüwa Digital Media Content Production Studios Ltd. (IE)

Deliverables: 5 TikTok videos on 5 different overarching European themes

Logo AreWeEurope  Logo Civinc  Logo Nüwa

Small independent local/regional newsroom cooperating cross border – developing a business model based on membership

The establishment of a small independent newsroom on a local level has the aim to produce an online toolbox for freelance journalists on how to create and develop their own media and motivate founding their own business. The partners of this proposal will explore how to work on common topics and research on journalistic materials relevant on a local and regional level with a cross border perspective (East -and West-European cases). 

Media organisation(s) with country of origin: Novinářský klub Jindřicha Oppera, z.s. (CZ), Misflits (BE)

Deliverables: Newsroom creation, development of a new business model considering membership and crowdsourcing models

Logo Apel Plzen  Logo Misflits

Sol(vox), the solution podcast of Solvo, a solution journalism collective

This proposal aims to create the first podcast to apply the solution journalism network guidelines in France and in Belgium. In doing so, it will present an in-depth analysis of how and why a specific initiative works, its limitations, its perspectives when it comes to replication. The first podcast series will concern the “Tech for good” initiatives – a sector that pretends to “change the world”, and focus on beneficiaries since most of the tech podcasts promote entrepreneurs.

Media organisation(s) with country of origin: A solution journalism collective (Solvo) (FR), We Tell Stories (BE)

Deliverables: A solution podcast

Logo Solvo  Logo We Tell Stories

Let’s educate on TikTok

The participants will develop an educational profile on TikTok to provide youths a focal point on educating themselves on the topics of fact-checking, debunking disinformation, and journalism. The aim is to educate them on how they can verify information on their own, make them understand how journalism in general works, thereby bringing it closer to people.

Media organisation(s) with country of origin: Ústav nezávislé žurnalistiky (CZ), HlídacíPes.org (CZ), Agencia EFE (ES) 

Deliverables: Creation of an educational profile on TikTok, including short explanatory videos, interactive manuals, quizzes and more

Logo HlidaciPes  Logo EFE

Stolen identity

This proposal aims to reconnect “stolen nephews” with their genetic family, thereby performing important work in the investigation and solving of the so-called “Madres de Plaza Mayo” movement. This concerns the abduction and disappearance of more than 30.000 people under the military dictatorship of General Jorge Rafael Videla from 1976 to 1983 in Argentina. After a worldwide campaign in 2020, a few of the stolen nephews, also, called “Desaparecidos”, were found – the initial hopes to increase this number.

Media organisation(s) with country of origin: La Repubblica (IT), Le Monde (FR), The Guardian (UK)

Deliverables: A cross-border investigative report with La Repubblica, Le Monde, The Guardian, launching of a platform to disseminate the Abuelas’ research and providing of a virtual test to discover if one could be a  “stolen nephews”

Logo la Repubblica  Logo Le Monde  Logo The Guardian

Connecto: towards European values through digital media. The Live Streaming Hub

This cooperation includes four partners that aim to strengthen European solidarity as opposed to extremist national movements by means of their founded consortium. The consortium will bring local media to a European level and connect the Romanian communities with the European Audience. Further, the skills of journalists shall be improved in terms of their digital capacity.

Media organisation(s) with country of origin: PressHub.ro (RO), EURACTIV Romania (RO), ȘTIRILE TRANSILVANIEI (RO), Occidentul Românesc (ES)

Deliverables: Next to the developed consortium, a series of interviews with success stories from the Romanian communities abroad will be developed

Logo PressHUB  Logo Euractiv  Logo STIRILE  Logo Occidentul Românesc

A force for good and a force for growth

Compromiso Empresarial is dedicated to creating a constructive and solutions magazine in the Spanish market, further developing their portfolio of being the leading online independent and free magazine focused on issues related to social innovation, corporate social responsibility, and the promotion of transparency and good governance of institutions. Together with their partners, they will also look into new revenue models. 

Media organisation(s) with country of origin: Compromiso Empresarial (ES), Instituto de Periodismo Constructivo (ES), Innovation Media Consulting Group (UK)

Deliverables: A constructive and solutions magazine in the Spanish market

Logo Compromiso Empresarial  Logo Instituto Periodismo Constructivo  Logo Innovation Media

For a constructive television in southern Europe

With the overall aim to help build a constructive television in southern Europe, this initiative will assess a set of short documentaries with a constructive journalism approach to on-trend topics to produce and sell to tv networks. It is intended to investigate and analyze current mass-media formats in Italy and Spain from the expansion of the Berlusconi model and further compare them with northern European content with a commitment to importing different quality formats through its examples. This way, the proposal combines, next to a cross-border perspective, a critical part with a solution part.

Media organisation(s) with country of origin: En Positivo Association (ES), Associazione Italiana Giornalismo Costruttivo (IT)

Deliverables: A set of short documentaries with a constructive journalism approach, starting with 4 episodes. A critical investigation of current mass-media formats including a comparison with Northern Europe

Logo En Positivo  Logo Associazione Italiana Giornalismo Costruttivo

Sex Ed Video Glossary

The project is designed as a video dictionary with the role of informing, educating, and raising awareness of phenomena and trends in human sexuality, which are still often considered taboo in different communities. Topics will be covered in a holistic approach and published in various ways. Sex Ed Glossary is a comprehensive media product whose content is of interest to different types of audiences, such as parents, teachers, sexual and reproductive health professionals, human rights NGO activists.

Media organisation(s) with country of origin: Reci HR (HR), RTV Slovenia (SL), SEX VS. THE STORK (Sexul vs. Barza) (RO)

Deliverables: 10 journalistic videos that explain one term from the field of human sexuality each

Logo Reci.hrLogo RTVSLO    Logo Sexul vs Barza

Mind the Challenge

The project aims to inform and raise public awareness about the issue of online challenges, a phenomenon that drives social media users to emulate behaviors of viral videos circulating on the Internet. Web docs will be developed to provide correct and verified information about the topic, reviewing the history of the phenomenon, and analyzing some case studies with the help of experts. This will properly address a problem that is often treated in a superficial and manipulative way.

Media organisation(s) with country of origin: Facta IT (IT), Agence France-Presse AFP (FR)

Deliverables: A dedicated website featuring a number of web docs on the described topic. Content will also be shared on TikTok and Instagram

Logo factaLogo afp

Euromag

Cafébabel and BX1 want to launch a monthly show broadcasted on BX1 that will report on a European topic and bring it to a local level. The goal is to link a European topic to a local and a European solution. For example, “How did Italians face the refugee crisis through urban agriculture ?” – What they did will be matched with the partners’ reporters and brought back to the Brussels region to find a similar project facing other and similar social issues.

Media organisation(s) with country of origin: Cafébabel (FR), BX1 (BE)

Deliverables: A monthly show of 26 minutes

Logo cafebabel  Logo bx1

AI to Enhance Creativity in Newswriting

The partners of this proposal aim to develop a real-time tool that will support journalists during the procedure of news writing to discover different angles, supporting articles and research papers, based on the subject they are writing about. The tool will help journalists to enhance the diversity and originality of their news writing.

Media organisation(s) with country of origin: Sigmalive LTD (CY), JECT.AI (UK)

Deliverables: Real-time tool to help journalists discover supporting articles and research papers on city.com.cy

Logo Sigma Live  Logo Ject.ai

SMART Podcasts / Accordion

To enable podcast listeners to take control over the duration of any podcast and let them tailor the length to fit the time they have available, this proposal aims at further developing and improving Accordion – a program that does just that. It adjusts the duration of podcasts while still maintaining structure, tone, and listenability and can be used for existing podcasts, or built into the production process of new podcasts.

Media organisation(s) with country of origin: Bwlb (UK), Bulle Media (BE)

Deliverables: Further development of Accordion

Logo BWLB  Logo Bulle media

Let the money talk – a data tool on public spending

This project is a digital storytelling experiment on how politicians spend the money of the taxpayers. It seeks to give new accessibility to and bring new stories from the data of public spending all available in public data sources. To do this, the two partners aim to develop a tool that will visualize and explain such data, thereby being a valuable addition for journalists and the broad, general public.

Media organisation(s) with country of origin: Altinget (DK), Openpolis (IT)

Deliverables: A tool that visualized and explains monetary data as public budgets and accounts, the prototype shall be able to cover the municipal elections in Denmark in November 2021

Logo Altinget  Logo openpolis

Vocento & Cruncho join forces: Hyperlocal tourism content in Spain powered by AI

To counter declining revenue from the well-established advertising approach, Vocento – one of the major media groups in Spain – is moving towards a subscription revenue model. To offer their subscribers something innovative, Vocento partners with the Swedish company Cruncho, which developed a powerful city-guide technology. Together, they will provide Vocentos user’s live, crowdsourced and personalized content in the entertainment and gastronomy of the user’s own region and cities.

Media organisation(s) with country of origin: Vocento Group (ES), Cruncho (SE)

Deliverables: Integration of AI-based city-guide services in selected areas of Spain

Logo Vocento  Logo Cruncho

Artificial intelligence in photojournalism, can it work?

The decision on pictures to go with a story, is an important task of journalists every day. However, there is currently no suitable AI solution that matches the needs and requirements of journalists, not only when it comes to cropping the images depending on display requirements but also when it comes to image material generally. For this reason Frameright, a Finnish Image Display Control solution partners with the Czech News Agency to develop an action-aware, style-conscious, and inclusive machine learning model for the described use cases.

Media organisation(s) with country of origin: Frameright (FI), Czech News Agency CTK (CZ)

Deliverables: A machine learning model that understands various types of photography (action aware), delivers the right kind of style (style-conscious), and doesn’t discriminating against minorities (inclusive)

Logo FrameRight  Logo CTK

Article 7 Intelligence – Helping Newsrooms across Europe close the Accountability Gap

To address the “accountability gap” existing in the area of politics, technology, and the media, this proposal aims at building a database of political content to help journalists produce accurate, factual, and well-sourced stories in less time than nowadays. The database, powered by machine learning, will thereby empower also independent journalists, or journalists from smaller institutions – as similar technologies are currently only available to very big media outlets.

Media organisation(s) with country of origin: Gap Article 7 (BE), IDA GmbH – Innovations- und Digitalagentur (DE)

Deliverables: Database of relevant political content and their context

Logo Article7  Logo ida

Videre AI: Next generation video understanding for news content

This initiative has the mission to leverage the potential of video data via cutting-edge Artificial Intelligence. For this, “Videre AI”, a video analysis tool that is built to solve general video understanding, has been developed. Together with their partners, it will now be put into practice with the goal to achieve superior video tagging as well as video captioning capabilities for news videos, thereby bringing additional value to news outlets. The archiving processes of news outlets will be improved drastically.

Media organisation(s) with country of origin: Design AI GmbH (DE), European Pressphoto Agency, epa. (DE), AGENCIA EFE S. A (ES) 

Deliverables: Implement Videre AI into practice, conduct further research and development in partnership with the news outlets

Logo DesignAI  Logo epa  Logo EFE

Virtual Humans in media contexts

In this project the possibility of using virtual humans in media contexts will be researched and put in practice. Virtual humans are computer generated figures, hyper realistic or stylized representations of living personalities, steered real-time or pre-rendered by an actor or an AI bot. Due to the ongoing merge of the virtual and real world, it is crucial to research in this direction, so that traditional broadcasters find ways in which to stay modern and relevant to their audience.

Media organisation(s) with country of origin: VRT (BE), BCE (LU), YLE (FI)

Deliverables: Research around virtual humans and media storytelling, proof of concept for each partner using the virtual human character, sharing of findings in EU media ecosystem in the form of a media format

Logo VRT  Logo BCE  Logo YLE

Project Empire

Project Empire is a database project concentrating information about assets and companies of influential Czech oligarchs. The business structures of the Central European oligarchs are vast and intransparent, spanning many countries. Therefore, a database is developed, which makes the data accessible. The project serves the public, journalists, researchers, civil society or any other interested users across Europe. It helps to understand how economic, political and media power is being monopolized in Central Europe.

Media organisation(s) with country of origin: České centrum pro investigativní žurnalistiku, o.p.s. (CZ), Atlatszo.hu (HU), Jan Kuciak Center of Investigative Journalism (SK)

Deliverables: Expansion of existing database (both in terms of content and functionality, e.g.  develop tools and workflow for the future database editions)

Logo investigace-cz  Logo Atlatszo  Logo ICJK

Reading with your ears

To offer their subscribers a premium service and sustain their business model, Courrier International and La Libre Belgique will work together to create an Artificial Intelligence tool that transforms articles into user-friendly audio format. They also dedicate themselves to adapt their production in order to achieve the best possible listening experience by creating an automated routine for the selection and conversion of the articles. Lastly, their UX will be improved accordingly to build a seamless experience.

Media organisation(s) with country of origin: Courrier international (Groupe Le Monde) (FR), La Libre Belgique (IPM Group)  (BE)

Deliverables: AI tool to convert articles into audio format

Logo Courrier international  Logo La Libre

TemplAR (Templates in Augmented Reality)

To bring interactivity to traditional newspapers, this initiative will integrate augmented reality aspects to newspapers, thereby bridging traditional with novel forms of content and social media. The overall goal is to create a digital platform via augmented reality. This will not only entertain readers but also rejuvenate the target audience by innovative experiences. Lastly, new sources of income will be explored.

Media organisation(s) with country of origin: DNA Dernières Nouvelles d’Alsace (FR), templAR SAS, France Régie (« Les DNA ») (DE)

Deliverables: A weekly special edition, daily augmented articles, gamified content for the partnered newspapers, new sources of income

Logo DNA  Logo France Regie

RISE Project Mobile App for Loyal Readers

In this project, RISE Project is the leading Romanian investigative reporting organization and has already led to money being recovered from criminals as well as to change in laws in various countries and shutting down banks servicing criminals. To expand their services, they want to launch an app in collaboration with Hungarian and Bulgarian investigative press, whose content will also be featured in the App. The cooperation will further lead to a Semestrial Regional Investigative Press Review of the partners.

Media organisation(s) with country of origin: The Bureau for Investigative Reporting and Data (BG), Atlatszo.hu (HU), Atlzatszo Erdely (atlatszo.ro) (RO)

Deliverables: RISE Project app, publishing of 25 articles 

Logo BIRD  Logo Atlatszo HU  Logo atlatszo RO

Rich media: Increasing Diversity of Experts’ Voices in Journalism

This project is designed to raise journalists’ awareness about inequalities that get reproduced in media content by providing innovative journalistic analysis of journalists’ work, as well as preparing material for deepening journalists’ knowledge in Lithuania. This will include establishing innovative data journalism formats to make data more aesthetically appealing, clear and help present research results and current discourses to readers from various aspects. For this, a dedicated website will be developed.

Media organisation(s) with country of origin: Lithuanian Journalism Centre (LT), Sheldon Studio (IT)

Deliverables: Website dedicated for the data journalism project 

Logo lithuanian journalism centre  Logo SheldonStudio

Solutions Journalism European MOOC (Massive Open Online Course)

The aim of this project is to create the first Massive Open Online Course (MOOC) dedicated to solutions journalism with a European dimension. The MOOC will associate journalists, media experts, web developers, and business experts from three EU countries and will be available in French and English. It is targeted to students, journalists, and media professionals and will offer a variety of courses while combining interactive, media and pedagogic-related content as well as enable meetings to deepen the training.

Media organisation(s) with country of origin: Reporters d’Espoirs (FR), Voxeurop Belgium (BE), Voxeurop Italy (IT), ESJ Pro Médias (FR)

Deliverables: Creation of a Massive Open Online Course dedicated to solutions journalism with a European dimension

Logo reporters d'espoirs  Logo voxeurop  Logo ESJ Pro

Monetizing audiences in a cookieless world

To ensure the revenue model of advertising that is widely adopted by publishers, ID Ward has created a privacy- compliant, publisher-focused data collective that supports targeted advertising in a cookieless world (a soon-to-be-reality). The platform allows publishers to identify 100% of their audiences, enrich their first-party data with data from across the network and sell targeted, measurable audiences to advertisers in a privacy-preserving way. This solution will be made available not only to big media companies, but also to small ones, safeguarding a level playing field.

Media organisation(s) with country of origin: ID Ward (ES), Network N (UK)

Deliverables: Establishment, implementation and refining of a data collective for publishers

Logo ID Ward  Logo Network N

Building sustainable revenue models with community-centric media trainings

This project will help media organisations diversify their revenue streams by building media training programmes as ‘out-of-the-box’ commercial ventures. These trainings will target both journalists and non-journalist audiences and are focused on ways to turn the students community into active participants in the learning experience to increase value creation for all parties involved. Overall, the goal is to understand how journalism/media training can be made as effective as possible, thereby creating new revenue streams and increasing the customer loyalty of participants.

Media organisation(s) with country of origin: Euronews (FR), EURACTIV Poland (PL) , FATHM (UK)

Deliverables: How-to guide for media organizations and the industry at large to design, produce and sell user-centric media/journalism training – also available as a webinar/online course

Logo euronews  Logo Euractiv  Logo fathm

The Self-Investigation Academy: an e-learning platform to scale up our successful stress management course for journalists

The Self-Investigation is an initiative that provides training and coaching aimed at improving media professionals’ well-being. The aim of this proposal is to innovate the current training model into two identical self-guided courses, one in English and one in Spanish, via an e-learning platform, thereby also creating a new revenue stream. The self-guided courses will be practical and cater to the key challenges journalists face in their work.

Media organisation(s) with country of origin: The Self-Investigation (NL), Motion Crew (BE)

Deliverables: Creation of an e-learning platform that will offer two self-guided courses

Logo The Self-Investigation  Logo Motion Crew

Engaging the disengaged from local news, and attracting new newspaper subscribers through non-reader engagement

In this initiative, the partners want to identify people who are disengaged from city issues, and elevate their concerns and voices to ultimately motivate more people to involve themselves in city affairs. To do so, the profession of journalism will be taught to them, while giving them the opportunity to also write articles themselves. Specific neighborhoods in Dublin will be targeted, volunteering citizens acquired and lastly, the initiative will be evaluated from both the newspapers internal KPI’s as well as participant surveys.

Media organisation(s) with country of origin: Dublin Inquirer (IE), Social Spider (UK)

Deliverables: Completion of the neighborhood project including the running of events and focus groups, conducting of surveys, giving journalism training, set up of collaborative crowd-sourced journalism project

Logo Dublin InQuirer  Logo Social Spider

Interactive Map for Audio Stories

The goal of this proposal is to create an Interactive online map of continental Europe where visitors can discover audio stories by clicking on different locations on the map. This will link already existing audio content to specific places and increase the engagement by letting the content consumers interact and contribute. This will also enhance cross-border journalism and not only lead to the creation of a new business model, but also to establishing an innovative, improved way to search for content.

Media organisation(s) with country of origin: Are We Europe (BE), Novasaga (NL), Bear Radio (DE)

Deliverables: Interactive map for audio stories with comprehensive filtering options

Logo AreWeEurope  Logo novasaga  Logo Bear Radio

Learn more about the process behind the second edition on the links below: