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07 November 2019

Future News Fund Open For Applications

Local and national news media publishers are able to apply to the Government-funded Future News Fund for grants of up to £100,000 to “pilot new approaches to public interest news,” Nesta has announced.

Applications have to be submitted by 8 December this year with the fund providing grants of £20,000 to £100,000 “plus wrap-around support to prototype new solutions and an accelerator to support early-stage businesses.”

Nesta said: “The fund is a response to the severe challenges in public interest news detailed in the Cairncross Review and will provide grants to prototype, including grant funding to prototype new solutions and an accelerator to support early-stage businesses.”  

Successful applicants will get support between January and June 2020 to develop and test their ideas.

The "prototyping sprint" part of the fund will provide up to £100,000 and provide support to projects that will test new ideas for sustainable public interest news.

The "accelerator track" will provide structured business-building support and up to £100,000 funding for start-up businesses using technology to support the ecosystem of the generation and delivery of public interest news.

Valerie Mocker, Future News Fund lead, said: “Public interest news is part of the immune system that keeps our democracy healthy. Everyone should be able to connect quickly to information as a way to hold public institutions such as politicians, councils, courts or school boards to account. Everyone  should have access to a platform for the issues and campaigns that matter to you most locally. 

Nigel Adams, Minister for Sport, Media and the Creative Industries, said: “Journalists hold the powerful to account and shine a light on important issues the public need to know about.

"We are determined to support those doing this vital work and have established the Future News Fund to act as a catalyst for new ideas.”