The Flemish Journalism Fund was launched in the Summer of 2018 to support diversity and innovation in journalism in Flanders. The Fund was a project of Journalismfund.eu, in partnership with the Flemish Association of Journalists and the Flemish government.
The FJF had three principal goals:
- organising a subsidy programme for innovative journalism projects
- stimulating knowledge sharing about news and media
- enhancing cooperation between Flanders and the Netherlands
In September 2018, the Fund launched a subsidy call for innovative journalism projects. 37 journalists, organisations and start-ups applied. In December 2018, the Fund awarded innovation grants to 11 journalism projects, for a total amount of €500,000.
These are the supported projects:
- Factcheck.Vlaanderen (Factcheck.Flanders): an online platform that uses artificial intelligence to detect disinformation and polarisation so that fact-checkers can verify and combat it.
- Apache Lokaal (Apache Local): a local journalism project in which news site Apache explored four themes with the help of local citizens and journalists.
- Sonderland: a production studio for nonfiction, run by a collective of journalists, scientists, video- and radio producers, illustrators and photographers. Every year Sonderland produces journalism about one central topic (in 2019: housing).
- Chase Social Stories: a coaching project for adolescents who make stories about social change in urban communities.
- The Polar Project: a cross-media magazine on climate change.
- FactRank: a free tool that automatically filters out statements from Dutch-language texts worthy of fact-checking.
- Podlab XL: a training programme for non-fiction podcast makers, that coaches audio novices from podcast idea to pilot.
- Wablieft gaat digitaal (Wablieft Goes Digital): an online news channel for low-literate adults.
- U:nite: a team of emerging actors and word artists brings news to 16-24-year-old video consumers using new online formats.
- News Noses: a journalism competition for secondary school classes, run by a regional television broadcaster.
- UITLANDER: a platform for high-quality, international stories about and by Belgians living abroad, made for the Belgian home audience.
In 2020 the FJF had scheduled a new call for innovative journalism projects, but the newly appointed Flemish government unexpectedly and prematurely cut the FJF budget, which forced the Fund to cease its activities.
The programme was funded by the Flemish government.
The Flemish Journalism Fund came to an end in 2020.