Uncovering Security - Story Lab 2018
Dates: 08 January 11 January | Location: Wiston House - West Sussex
Application deadline: 04 September | Programme: Uncovering Security

This is an opportunity provided by the Uncovering Security programme: Find out more

The news media plays a vital role in documenting conflict, instability and other security threats around the world. But the media can also play a role in helping to build resilience and prevent instability, by providing high quality reporting that highlights potential crises before they spiral out of control.The Thomson Reuters Foundation, in partnership with the Stanley Foundation and Gerda Henkel Stiftung, invites applications from journalists to take part in a unique media skills development programme designed to strengthen stories on under-covered security threats and responses across the globe.

The programme will support journalists to collaborate with researchers to uncover emerging threats in specific communities, countries or regions worldwide, and produce stories that reach a wide audience. Uncovering Security was launched in 2016 to give journalists and researchers who are interested in similar security-related topics the opportunity to work together – to learn from each other, to share skills, expertise, resources and contacts. The results of this pilot program revealed many benefits to this kind of cooperation.  We are excited to launch this programme again to foster new collaborations and to support outstanding reporting.

The programme features:

  • A three-day residential Story Lab (8-11 January 2018) taking place near London that will bring together journalists, security researchers, and experts to share insight on emerging security situations and explore or refine story ideas (costs of participation are covered by the programme)
  • The opportunity to collaborate with researchers and apply for small grants to cover the cost of reporting stories.
  • Access to experienced journalists who have covered security stories all over the world, and who can provide advice and editorial guidance
  • Support with pitching stories to international publication platforms if needed.

All applicants are asked to submit a story idea that could be developed during the programme. If accepted, journalists will not necessarily be expected to pursue this story idea. During the seminar, journalists may learn of a different story, or modify their original story.

Here are some possible story topics – although we welcome ideas that concern other security threats in any region of the world:

  • Mass violence and atrocities – How are risks for mass violence and atrocities in some areas creating spillover effects in other areas, and are there local, regional or global responses that can strengthen societal resilience to reduce these risks?
  • Global peacekeeping – Given the number and range of security threats globally, are there new approaches to sustaining peace that hold promise?
  • Nuclear weapons –How are emerging technologies such as artificial intelligence and 3D printing creating new risks for the use of nuclear weapons? 
  • Migration – how is the movement of people, whether voluntary or forced, contributing to worsening security?
  • Climate Change – Where could climate change introduce security threats, or multiply problems in areas already prone to conflict?

Who Can Apply

We are looking for:

  • Journalists working for media outlets in the developing world, or the USA, Canada or Germany
  • At least three years’ experience in journalism
  • Experience covering security situations would be an advantage
  • Journalists working in any medium, or multiple media
  • Staff journalists or freelancers may apply. If you are a freelancer, your primary work should be journalism
  • Must be fluent in English

Course Logistics

The programme will cover all transport and subsistence costs of journalists participating in this programme.

Meet Our Experts

Click here to access the application form. The deadline is 4th September 2017.

When applying you will be asked to upload the following documents - please have these ready:

  •  2 relevant work samples (maximum file size 5 MB). Please choose samples that relate to the themes of this programme.
  • A letter from your editor consenting to your participation in the programme and committing to publish/broadcast resulting stories. If you are a freelancer, please supply a letter from an editor who regularly takes your work. 
Please note you will be asked to submit one or more story ideas within your application. If you are selected, you can refine or change your story idea during the programme.

Uncovering Security
  • Independent media plays a key role in reporting conflict and security, and identifying threats before they emerge. This programme stimulates collaboration between journalists and researchers and assists them to uncover major security challenges.


    Find out more

About Media Development

The Thomson Reuters Foundation is committed to fostering the highest standards of journalism worldwide. We believe accurate, impartial and independent journalism leads to better-informed societies. It holds power to account, strengthens the rule of law and contributes to economic and social development.

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