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(Credit: Global Editors Network, screenshot)

The European Journalism Centre,an “independent, international, non-profit institute dedicated to the highest standards in journalism,” is accepting entries for the first Data Journalism Awards until April.

By holding awards specific to data journalism, the EJC’s Liliana Bounegru explained the center hopes the awards will be “highlighting the best practices,” and “setting standards in data journalism.”

Bounegru told iMediaEthics that the awards will be “the first international contest recognising outstanding work in the field of data journalism worldwide.” Six prizes in three categories will be given — “one for the winning national or international media organisation and one for a regional or hyper-local submision,” according to the Guardian.  The categories are: “data-driven investigative journalism,” “data visualisation & storytelling,” and “data-driven applications (mobile or web),” according to the awards website.

The total prize money is €45,000 or close to $60,000.  Bounegru said the center hopes to host these awards annually.  According to Bounegru, the Global Editors Network suggested the data awards to the European Journalism Centre. According to a January press release on its website, Google is sponsoring the contest.   The EJC “is producing the Data Journalism Awards website and administering the prize” according to a Google press release.

We asked Bounegru for more information about the relationship between the Global Editors Network, the EJC and Google for this contest. She explained:

“The Data Journalism Awards were conceived by the Global Editors Network. The competition is run in collaboration with the European Journalism Centre and is sponsored by Google. GEN handles the relationship with the jury, EJC runs the communication, including the website. Both GEN and EJC together with three external experts are on the pre-jury. The role of the pre-jury is to judge the entries and submit to the jury a minimum of four nominations per category. In May 2012 the main jury will be asked to independently judge the four nominations made by the pre-jury for each prize category and select the winners. You can find the jury members here: http://datajournalismawards.org/jury/.”

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Bounegru noted that the EJC has “been involved for several years in enabling more journalists to use data-sets as a source for reporting by means of conferences, trainings, online resources (DataDrivenJournalism.net), and building a community of data journalists, designers, developers, and others to encourage collaboration and to exchange knowledge of expertise and best practices with each other.”

Applications must be completed by April 10, 2012 at 23:59 GMT.  According to Bounegru, “media companies, non-profit organisations and freelancers or individuals” can submit work in English “published or aired between 11 April 2011 and 10 April 2012” in “online, radio, audio, broadcast, print or a combination of platforms.”  Applicants can submit multiple entries and “there are no submission fees.”

If applicants want to submit something not in English, applicants must include “translations of the work” including translations of any “graphics, databases and applications.”

Exceptions: Applicants of work not published in English may have to pay “translation costs” if necessary.  “Those works produced by staffers or freelancers collaborating with government agencies, business or trade organisations with a stake (financial or of other nature) in the issue at hand are not eligible.  Works that include significant input from the members of the jury will not be accepted for entry into the competition.”

Enter the contest here. The awards ceremony is May 31 in Paris.

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AWARDS: 1st Data Journalism Awards this Year, Awards will Promote & Set Best Practices, Standards

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