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innovateAFRICA: 22 media projects get share of $1m

Twenty-two projects in the field of journalism have been selected by innovateAFRICA.fund to receive a share of US$1-million in funding and support.

“The world is facing challenging political and socio-economic realities. We need the media and other civic watchdogs to provide the checks and balances needed to help us navigate an uncertain future,” says juror and director of investments for Africa at Omidyar Networks, Ory Okolloh, in a press release to Memeburn.

“It has therefore been fantastic to see not just the superb quality and range of entries, but also the diversity of ideas and collaboration that innovateAFRICA has fostered across the region.”

The 22 projects were chosen out of 736 applications from 49 African countries.

The proposals were chosen over a two-month review process, with an independent jury of international experts choosing 73.

The innovateAFRICA fund aims to bolster innovative media projects across the continent

“It has therefore been fantastic to see not just the superb quality and range of entries, but also the diversity of ideas and collaboration that innovateAFRICA has fostered across the region,” says Okolloh.

The participants will refine their plans over the next month, after which they will receive between US$12 500 and US$100 000 in funding. They will also receive support from Code for Africa’s civic technology labs across Africa.

The projects will receive additional support from the Media Development Investment Fund and Global Editors Network.

“We’ve selected some of the brightest innovators in this space to experiment with leapfrog technologies, but the real focus is to help teams build real-world solutions to real-world problems that can immediately be adopted and scaled by mainstream media companies and civil society,” says the founder of innovateAFRICA, Justin Arenstein.

They will also assist the other 51 shortlisted projects by providing help in the exploration of finding partnerships, and collaboration.

Those selected are:

  1. afriBOT (Namibia and Zimbabwe) by the European Journalism Centre & The Source
  2. africanDRONE (pan-Africa) by WeRobotics & UnequalScenes
  3. ATLAS (pan-Africa) by Quartz Africa
  4. Blast Tracker (Tanzania) by Sophie Tremblay
  5. Bot Starter-Kit (pan-Africa) by HEI-DA.org
  6. #CartooNews (pan-Africa) by AfriCartoons
  7. CHECK (Kenya, Tanzania, Uganda) by PesaChrck & Meedan
  8. CitizenScience (South Africa) by Open Data Durban
  9. DollarStreet Africa (Kenya, Nigeria, Tanzania) by Gapminder Foundation
  10. ENGAGE (South Africa) by the Engage Video Group
  11. FOI Portal (Kenya) by mySociety and Article 19 East Africa
  12. FRONTLINE (South Africa) by African Defence Review
  13. Graphic Journalism Hub (Tanzania) by ONA Systems
  14. Hospital Helper (South Africa) by Health-E News
  15. InfoFinder (Kenya, Nigeria, South Africa, Senegal) by AfricaCheck
  16. LiveWire (South Africa) by Grass Root Nation
  17. MembaO (Sierra Leone) by Code for Sierra Leone
  18. MeshNews (Tanzania) by Outernet & DataZetu
  19. NewsBot (Nigeria, Kenya) by Atchi & Star and Punch
  20. Overlay (pan-Africa) by Paul Watson (formerly of Storyful)
  21. OpenGazettes (Nigeria) by AfriLII & the International Centre for Investigative Reporting
  22. DECLARE (South Africa) by Media Monitoring Africa

Author | Graham van der Made: Staff Reporter

Graham van der Made: Staff Reporter
Graham started out as an electronics manager at Take2 Home Entertainment and went on to spend a further ten years in the South African ecommerce industry. During this time, Graham founded and managed an online geek and hobby shop. He has always had a passion for writing and has... More

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