The German Development Media Awards honor journalists worldwide for their outstanding reporting on human rights and development issues. The new awards were launched at a ceremony in Berlin.
"It is about cooperating as equal partners, truly working together and having a genuine exchange," said DW Director-General Erik Bettermann at the launch of the German Development Media Awards on March 11, 2013 in Berlin.
The newly inaugurated awards for human rights and development journalism are an initiative of Germany's Federal Ministry for Economic Cooperation and Development (BMZ) and Deutsche Welle (DW). The awards are now open to journalists from Africa, Asia, the Middle East, Latin America, Eastern Europe and Germany.
Submissions to the competition will be accepted in any journalistic format (print, TV, radio or online) and must have been aired or published between January 1, 2012 and May 31, 2013. Entries can be in one of seven core languages: Arabic, Chinese, English, French, German, Russian or Spanish. Entries in other languages broadcast by Deutsche Welle will also be accepted if accompanied by a translation in one of the seven core languages. A jury of acclaimed and independent journalists will select the six winning entries.
There is also a special People's Choice Award for the best human rights photograph. This award is open to African photojournalists living and working in Africa.
The closing date for submissions is May 31, 2013. Each of the seven winners will receive a 2,000 euro cash prize as well as a trip to Berlin to attend the awards ceremony on August 14, 2013. Further details about the German Development Media Awards are available at www.GermanMediaAwards.org.
"Media and development are inseparable," said BMZ State Secretary Hans-Jürgen Beerfeltz at the launch. Over the years, BMZ had substantially increased its support of the media and press freedom, he said, and DW Akademie - Germany's leading organization for international media development - was BMZ's most important partner in this. Gerda Meuer, DW Akademie's Managing Director, stressed that, "These awards aim to encourage journalists to critically report on human rights violations and to highlight success stories and innovative approaches to development."
In order to ensure even closer cooperation, DW and BMZ signed a Memorandum of Understanding at the awards launch ceremony. The MoU declares, among other things, that all BMZ funded media training and media development activities will come under the umbrella of DW Akademie.