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CEI SEEMO investigative journalism prize 2021

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One virus, many stories: investigative reporting on the socio-economic impact of the global pandemic


The CEI SEEMO Award for Outstanding Merits in Investigative Journalism is meant to promote high-quality investigative journalism and acknowledge the efforts of media professionals to explore major topics, often working under difficult conditions.

FOCUS 2021

The COVID-19 pandemic has resulted in a socio-economic and health crisis at multiple levels, with effects on employment, income, education, mental well-being, gender inequalities across age, ethnicity, and social groups. Under this framework, the CEI SEEMO Award 2021 seeks to promote the work of investigative journalists who contributed to bringing attention to the socio-economic impact of the pandemic on people’s lives, in particular by exploring stories focused on gender, youth, minority groups and people with disabilities.


The Call is open to nationals of the 17 CEI Member States: Albania, Belarus, Bosnia and Herzegovina, Bulgaria, Croatia, the Czech Republic, Hungary, Italy, Moldova, Montenegro, North Macedonia, Poland, Romania, Serbia, Slovakia, Slovenia, Ukraine.

The Award is divided into two categories:

2. YOUNG PROFESSIONAL JOURNALISTS (born on/after 1991) 1,000 EUR

Category 1: candidates who have been actively involved in investigative reporting over the last two years and are still active in journalism. Two samples of journalistic work will be relevant for the evaluation from the jury.

Category 2: candidates who have been actively involved in investigative reporting, even in the context of training activities organised by schools/universities/NGOs and, as a result, should have published at least one investigative story meeting all professional standards. One sample of journalistic work will be relevant for the evaluation from the jury.

Print, Radio, TV, news agencies and Internet media are admitted.


Award details

 Online Application Form 

The following documents in PDF format shall be uploaded:
1. a detailed Curriculum Vitae;
2. a recommendation letter written and signed by trustworthy individuals, journalism and media organisations, media companies, civil society organisations, journalism schools or universities, trade unions or other social organisations from the target countries;
3. up to three samples of journalistic work in a single PDF document (minimum two samples in Category 1, one sample in Category 2). For online work samples, insert hyperlinks in a PDF document, or print out online articles in a PDF file. Hyperlinks need to be accessible at least by 30 November 2021. In the case of audio/video material, please upload the files making use of file-sharing services (e.g. WeTransfer or Dropbox) including a script or scenario.
Material prepared in local languages should be accompanied by a short summary in English.

Applications that do not include all requested documentation will not be considered.


Applications shall be submitted by 31 August 2021 (23:59 CEST).


Applications will be examined by an international jury composed of distinguished journalists and media experts from the region, which may also include winners of previous editions of the Award. The awarding ceremony will take place during the South East Europe Media Forum (SEEMF) to be held in autumn this year.

The jury will take into account the relevance of the matters covered by the reports, which should have a focus on the target countries as well as the quality of reporting in terms of documentation, data, writing and production. The personal risks taken while performing the duties as well as the impact on society of the messages conveyed will also be evaluated.

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