Bridging the digital skills gap in Europe through the Developer Scholarship Challenge

Everyone needs the right digital skills to get a job, grow their career or business, or become an entrepreneur or developer. That’s why we started Google Growth Engine in 2015, a collection of digital skills programs offering free online and in person training across Europe.

The Developer Scholarships Challenge is one of these programs, a partnership between Google, Bertelsmann and Udacity, to help Europeans develop the skills required to build winning apps. Together we launched the first phase of developer scholarships in November 2016, and in September this year, announced phase 2 of the Developer Scholarships Challenge offering 75,000 scholarships to beginner and existing programmers.

Continue reading “Bridging the digital skills gap in Europe through the Developer Scholarship Challenge”

Data Journalism Awards 2018: call for entries

Data Journalism—the skill of combining reporting with data—is becoming an increasingly important part of every journalist’s toolkit. That’s not just anecdotal: a recent study commissioned by the Google News Lab found that half of all news outlets have at least one dedicated data journalist.

So, for the seventh consecutive year, we’re proud to support the 2018 Data Journalism Awards. Continue reading “Data Journalism Awards 2018: call for entries”

Who are the people really making a difference in digital media this year? Who is flying under the radar but needs to be in the spotlight for innovation? Who is making a difference in their community, in the nation or the world? MediaShift wants to find out with your help. We are launching our first MediaShift20 list for 2017, and want to highlight people in the digital media world who are truly change-makers and who are leading the way.

We will have three lists: our overall MediaShift20 that will include everyone in digital media, from entrepreneurs to journalists to producers; the EducationShift20 that will focus on innovation by educators; and the MetricShift20 to highlight great work in media metrics. Our goal is to bring attention to those who have done great work in 2017 and deserve more notice.

Startups with innovative solutions for newsrooms can now apply to global programme

Startups for News seeks applications from early-stage companies with products and services that can accelerate newsrooms. Application for the Startups for News competition are now open, seeking to hear from startups with innovative products and services that could help media organisations work more efficiently. Applications for the programme, organised by the Global Editors Network in partnership with, are open until 1 January 2018, after which the international jury will select 16 startups to participate in online pitch battles. [Read more]

It’s time to apply for a Knight Visiting Nieman Fellowship

How would you finish this sentence? Journalism has never been more _______.

If you answered essential or exciting or precarious or imperiled — and have ideas for how to make it more of the first two or less of the last — you may be a candidate to join our next group of Knight Visiting Nieman Fellows. We are looking for ideas to advance journalism — ideas that would be helped by up to 12 weeks of project work here on Harvard’s campus. We’ll be accepting applications through September 29, which you can submit online.

In nearly six years of supporting visiting fellows, we’ve embraced an exciting array of innovative ideas and journalism influencers. We’ve welcomed editors and academics, reporters and developers, veterans and junior practitioners. Fellows have come from the U.S. and abroad, including India, Egypt, South Africa, Mexico, and throughout Europe. Recent fellows have included:

  • Sandra Barrón Ramirez, product designer at Borde Político and Transparencia Mexicana, who worked on constructing a central index for the disappeared and missing in Mexico, data that will help journalists.
  • Trushar Barot, London-based mobile editor for the BBC World Service, who researched AI assistants, a project that included a convening of news and tech industry leaders to share developments in voice AI.
  • David Barboza, a reporter for The New York Times, who is creating a business and financial database of Chinese companies to aid investigative journalism in China.
  • His colleague Nina Lassam, director of ad product at the Times, who studied how to foster greater participation in comments and distributed news content, with a focus on more engagement among female readers.
  • Raheel Khursheed, Twitter’s head of news partnerships for India and Southeast Asia, who examined micropayments for news content.

Many of our visiting fellows’ have made their resulting work public, which we hope further encourages innovation in journalism. Futurist Amy Webb published a Nieman ebook on her proposal for rewriting the future for journalism schools. Jack Riley came as a visiting fellow from The Huffington Post U.K. to study the future for news on wearables, and wrote about his findings for Nieman Lab. Tara Pixley, an independent photojournalist and photo editor, authored this cover story for Nieman Reports about the importance of diversifying news imagery and the ranks of visual journalists, the subject of her visiting fellowship.

Along with her excellent report on an alternative vision for public radio membership, visiting fellow Melody Kramer created something even more valuable for visiting fellowship applicants: a short video about her proposal, her application, her interview, and how she approached her eight weeks at Harvard. In reflecting on her advice, one additional question to consider is whether your goals would be best met by this project-based fellowship or by our year-long Nieman Fellowship, an opportunity for broader inquiry and professional development. A couple of visiting fellows discovered that their ambitions were grander than their brief time on campus allowed and wished they had applied for the full academic year. (Applications for that fellowship are due December 1 for international journalists and January 31 for U.S. applicants.)

I recently met with Nieman colleagues to review the status of the visiting fellowships and they all underscored the importance of two fundamentals: first, a focused project is better than a broad one; second, plan ahead. Whether you come to campus for two weeks or 12, the time will go quickly. You are unlikely to complete your interviews and research if you don’t narrow them to what’s achievable and identify important campus and Cambridge-area resources before arriving — including those at the Nieman Foundation.

We’re bullish on journalism at Nieman, and know its future depends on innovation. These visiting fellowships are one way we invest in that future. If you have questions, please contact us at We’re eager to read your proposals.

Ann Marie Lipinski is curator of the Nieman Foundation for Journalism at Harvard.

More than EUR 21 million in funding from Round 3 of the Digital News Initiative Fund

Two years ago, we established the Digital News Initiative (DNI), a partnership between Google and news publishers in Europe to support high-quality journalism through technology and innovation. As well as investing in product development, research and training, we also launched the DNI Innovation Fund, committing €150 million to innovation projects across the European news industry. Today, we’re announcing the recipients of our third round of funding, with 107 projects in 27 countries being offered funding worth €21,968,154 in total.

In this third round, we received more than 988 project submissions from 27 countries. Of the 107 projects funded today, 49 are prototypes (early stage projects requiring up to €50k of funding), 31 are medium-sized projects (requiring up to €300k of funding) and 27 are large projects (requiring up to €1m of funding).

Innovation Fund - Round 3

What’s new in this round? First and foremost,there is growing interest in fact checking experiments, with 29 percent more applications in that field in comparison to the previous rounds. We’ve also seen a rise in projects including artificial intelligence (+23 percent more applications than last round), investigative reporting (+20 percent more) and immersive approaches through virtual and augmented reality (+20 percent more). Last but not least, this round was also about collaboration between organisations and across borders, with 47 percent of all the applications selected for funding having a collaborative dimension. Here’s a sample of some of the projects funded in this round:

[Prototype] The Open State Foundation – Netherlands

The Open State Foundation promotes transparency through the use of open data and innovative and creative applications. It will receive €50k to prototype a real-time database of what politicians say and do, drawn from a wide range of sources. The goal is to increase transparency and give journalists better access to political information, in particular on niche topics, local politics, backbenchers and alternative local parties.

[Medium] – Spain

With its Transparent Journalism Tool (TJ Tool) and funding of €208,500 from the DNI Innovation Fund, will offer an open source application that gives readers behind-the-scenes access citizens to the newspaper’s editorial process, so they can trace the newsgathering and editing work in a radically transparent way. It will also provide the publisher with data about the cost of producing each story, with a view to monetizing more content via formats like micropayments.

[Large] Deutsche Welle – Germany

Deutsche Welle reports in 30 languages and reaches more than 135 million listeners around the world. Doing so cost-effectively is a major challenge. But with €437,500 from the DNI Innovation Fund, the German public broadcaster is building “news.bridge – Bridge the Language Barrier for News” a platform that integrates and enhances a mix of off-the-shelf tools for automated transcription, translation, voiceover and summarising of video and audio content in virtually any language.

[Large] WikiTribune – UK

WikiTribune, a news platform launched by Jimmy Wales, founder of Wikipedia, has been awarded €385,000 to scale its operations. It seeks to counter the proliferation of low quality news sources with fact-based, transparently sourced articles that are written by professional journalists and verified and improved by a community of volunteers. Like Wikipedia, it’s free, and ad free, but funded by supporters.

Since February 2016, we’ve evaluated more than 3,000 applications, carried out 748 interviews with project leaders, and offered 359 recipients in 29 countries a total of €73m. To mark this milestone, we’re hosting our first DNI Innovation Fund event today in Amsterdam, where 24 project teams that received funding in Round 1 or 2 will share details of their work and results to date.

We’re also publishing the Fund’s first annual report, which outlines the early impact of the projects funded so far. From startups to large newsrooms, at national and local news outlets, DNI-funded projects are embracing the opportunities of big data, blockchain technology and machine learning, evolving and reinventing everything from subscriptions and fact checking to video production and reader engagement.  These projects are helping shape the future of high-quality journalism—and some of them are already directly benefiting the European public today too.

Digital News Initiative Fund: Experiment, Innovate, Invent


Finally, we’re excited to announce that the application window for Round 4 of the DNI Innovation Fund will open in early September and will run for 30 days. Based on feedback from Round 3, we’ll be making a few changes to the application process, and we’ll be posting details to the website in the coming weeks.

Proudly powered by WordPress | Theme: Baskerville 2 by Anders Noren.

Up ↑