The Climate Change Media Partnership (CCMP), led by Internews’ Earth Journalism Network (EJN) and the Stanley Center for Peace and Security, is pleased to announce the CCMP COP28 Reporting Fellowship Program for journalists interested in covering the 28th United Nations Climate Change Conference of the Parties (COP28). Hosted this year by the United Arab Emirates, the conference is scheduled to take place in the city of Dubai from 30 November to 12 December 2023.
Now in its 16th iteration since its launch in 2007, the CCMP has brought more than 400 journalists from low- and middle-income countries to attend and report on the annual UN climate talks. This has enabled journalists from around the world to cover the climate negotiations for their home audiences, while benefiting from working alongside knowledgeable media trainers and gaining a multifaceted understanding of the actions countries are taking — or not taking — to address climate change’s global impact.
This year, the CCMP Reporting Fellowship aims to bring up to 20 journalists from low- and middle-income countries to report in-person at COP28.
In addition, CCMP organizers will award 10 virtual fellowships this year, with spots for up to five journalists from the Middle East and North Africa (MENA) region and up to five from the Lower Mekong region in two separate cohorts. Each cohort will have a dedicated media trainer supporting them from on the ground in Dubai. In the application, journalists will be asked to indicate which Fellowship track they are most interested in.
Applications for the CCMP COP28 Reporting Fellowship will be accepted from June 7-30. Decisions will be communicated in August. Applications submitted after the deadline will not be accepted, so please consider submitting at least one day before the deadline to avoid any issues.
In-Person Fellowship track logistics
CCMP In-Person Fellows will travel to Dubai to attend the entire duration of the UN climate negotiations, with arrival planned for November 28, 2023 and departure on December 14, 2023.
The CCMP will cover non-refundable economy-class airfare, accommodation, meals, travel medical insurance and ground transportation costs related to Fellowship participation. Organizers will also facilitate the press accreditation process and provide logistical support relating to the trip. Please note that the process of obtaining any necessary visas is the Fellow’s individual responsibility, though the CCMP will reimburse visa costs.
Prior to the start of COP28, Fellows will receive resources and technical support to help prepare for reporting at the conference, including a pre-COP virtual workshop to meet the team, discuss reporting opportunities, and ask any questions. Once in Dubai, Fellows will participate in a series of specially designed activities over the two-week period on the ground, including an orientation session with seasoned climate journalists and experts on the key issues at this COP, daily briefings, networking events and interviews with high-level officials. They will also be guided by EJN trainers, who are senior journalists with experience covering UN climate summits.
Virtual Fellowship track logistics
Virtual Fellowships will run from 30 November to 13 December 2023.
Virtual Fellows will be supported by a media trainer who will be on the ground in Dubai. Virtual Fellowships will include a number of online activities, mostly conducted over Zoom, including:
- Regular meetings with trainers one-on-one and in groups about the latest COP news.
- Support in accessing information about the COP, including documents and live-streamed events.
- Group interviews with officials or other experts.
- Assistance with sourcing and interview scheduling.
- Mentoring and editing support for story development.
- Possible virtual networking opportunities.
To be eligible for the In-person Fellowship track, the applicant must:
- Be a professional journalist from or representing an established media house and reporting from a low- or middle-income country.
- Be available and willing to travel to Dubai to attend COP28 in person, arriving on November 28 and departing no earlier than December 14, 2023.
To be eligible for the Virtual Fellowship track, the applicant must:
- Be a professional journalist from or representing an established media house and reporting from a low- or middle-income country in the MENA or Lower Mekong regions, and a list of eligible countries is available here.
To be eligible for either Fellowship track, the applicant must:
- Have a good command of the English language.
- Have previous experience reporting on climate change issues and clearly indicate the kinds of stories you might pursue about the conference.
- Commit to participate in all Fellowship activities.
- Provide a letter of support from an editor, producer, or supervisor who can confirm that your news reports will be published or broadcast in an established media outlet. Freelancers are welcome to apply but must provide a letter of support from a media outlet for which they intend to report.
- Provide recent, relevant and journalistic work samples on climate change topics, which can be uploaded as documents or web links. Stories can be in any language as long as they are accompanied by a short English synopsis. Clips must focus on climate change topics.
Note: You’ll be asked to upload these supporting documents once you start the application process, so please have them ready.
For the purposes of this opportunity, we will only be accepting applications in English. Unfortunately, we do not have the capacity to consider applications in other languages at this time. Applicants must be able to participate fully in an English-language Fellowship to be awarded.
Applications are open to journalists working in any medium (online, print, television, radio). We encourage applications from freelance reporters and staff from all types of media organizations — international, national, local and community-based.
Journalists who attended COP26 or COP27 with EJN’s support are not eligible for this opportunity.
EJN reserves the right to disqualify applicants from consideration if they have been found to have engaged in unethical or improper professional conduct.
We are looking for applicants who meet the following criteria:
- Demonstrated experience covering climate change, climate policy and other environmental topics;
- A clear and well-researched reporting plan for the COP, including potential story ideas, an estimated number of stories they’ll produce during the Fellowship and demonstrated intention to continue developing their plan as the COP draws closer;
- A relationship with an established media house and a signed letter of support from an editor agreeing to publish or broadcast work produced at the COP.
EJN also considers the need to assemble a diverse cohort of journalists from different types of media houses, mediums and geographies.
Fellows are expected to produce stories regularly during the course of the Fellowship for their media house. Journalists may produce stories in any medium, including print, online, radio, broadcast and more.
Throughout the program, participating journalists are free to report as they see fit; however, as part of our program we may provide extra training or activities related to certain thematic topics, and encourage stories on these topics. We do ask that Fellows adhere to some basic editorial standards (which will be shared at the start of the Fellowship) and these guidelines:
Language of publication: Stories produced as a result of this Fellowship can be in any language. We ask that Fellows provide English summaries of stories produced in other languages and fully translate at least one of their stories into English so it can be shared with a wider audience. Fellows may use a tool like DeepL or other automated translation apps for this purpose.
Acknowledgement of support: Published stories and/or broadcasts must disclose CCMP support by including this tagline, “This story was produced as part of the Climate Change Media Partnership COP28 Fellowship, organized by Internews’ Earth Journalism Network and the Stanley Center for Peace and Security.”
Republication rights: Those who are awarded Fellowships are free to publish or broadcast stories produced as a result of the Fellowship first in their affiliated media as long as Internews’ EJN, its local and regional partner sites and the grant funders are also given rights to edit, republish, broadcast and distribute them freely. Stories from COP28 that are filed by participating journalists may be republished on EJN’s website and may be cross-posted on the Stanley Center’s website.
Travel requirements and safety protocols
In-person Fellows are responsible for ensuring that they meet any requirements for travel to the UAE. Applicants will be asked to indicate that they understand that participation in the Fellowship in-person in the UAE requires compliance with government and venue requirements, which may include proof of vaccine status and/or testing for COVID-19 before and during the conference. Applicants may be required to sign risk acknowledgment documentation indicating they understand and accept the risks associated with travel and partaking in in-person meetings.
Internews and the Stanley Center will be continuously assessing travel and health risks and will communicate those with Fellows ahead of the conference. All travel to participate in this Fellowship will be voluntary.
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This year’s CCMP Fellowship is organized and implemented in collaboration with the Stanley Center for Peace and Security, with generous support from Sida, Marisla Foundation, Friends Family Foundation, Smart Family Foundation and Flora Family Foundation. Additional funders may be confirmed later.
Applications submitted after the deadline will not be considered. Please consider submitting at least one day in advance of the deadline to avoid any issues.
If you encounter difficulties with submitting your application or have questions about the grants, please email firstname.lastname@example.org. Do not contact any other Internews email regarding this opportunity, as we will not receive it.
Banner image: 2023 CCMP logo / Credit: Stanley Center.