Apply for Funding - Application Instructions

Funding is closed now. Applications were open until October 12 (23:59 CEST).

Simple Checklist to Help You Prepare Your Application

The DNI Innovation Fund team has pulled together a checklist to review before you submit your application.
  • 01
    Keep it simple
    Avoid using technical terms or jargon, and describe your project idea using simple language. How would you tell a friend about the idea?
  • 02
    Carefully read the FAQs and the T&Cs

    The assessors need as much relevant information as possible in order to come to a conclusion. Make sure you carefully read the Frequently Asked Questions, the Terms and Conditions and the DNI Innovation Fund Report.

  • 03
    Check that everything adds up

    Check the budget information to make sure it all adds up, and check that references to financial elements made in different sections are consistent. Double check that the amount of funding requested is correct and the exact amount you intend to request as we are unable to change this later (even if an error is found).

  • 04
    Extra information

    Remember, your organisation and your business activity may not be well-known to the assessors. You are welcome to send additional information in support of your application to the email address: Don’t forget to put the application number in the subject line and do not to submit Business Sensitive Information.

  • Innovation Fund Q&A Video

    The DNI Innovation Fund team hosted a Q&A in 09/2017. Here are some of the most asked questions.

  • 05
    Get in touch

    Take a look at the previous recipients – maybe there’s someone you know who could tell you more about how the process works from an applicant point of view. Of course, the Fund project team is always available to answer any questions and can be contacted via Good Luck!

Review Selection Criteria

Projects will be evaluated against three main criteria. Important: In this round all medium and large applications need to include a clearly defined monetisation component and plan.

Projects which could have a wider application or provide learning for other operators as well as benefitting the applicant. This could be a solution one operator has found to a problem many are facing. Preferred projects will demonstrate potential for significant positive impact on the production of original journalism, the creation of new revenue streams or even change the way people consume digital news. Projects solely about content creation, education and training will not be funded.


Innovation/use of technology – preferred projects will use technology in innovative ways and be both transformative for the applicant, and for users. Rating innovation is a tricky thing to outline as it has many interpretations. Essentially projects need to be new and not existing, demonstrate some new thinking and show an interesting way of involving technology and they can empower journalism through technology.


The feasibility of the project is assessed on the following. Is this the right team to deliver? Has the applicant demonstrated the ability to complete on the project? Can we see consistency between costs and the amount of funding requested? How do they mitigate the risks? Preferred projects will have a sound business and implementation plan, clearly outline key performance indicators or metrics, and set out key risks and how to mitigate them. 

Select a Project Track

Applications will be allocated to three funding tracks, according to the amount of funding requested. Make sure you select the right one and click on "Apply now" below.
Small Prototype
Prototype Projects

This funding track is open to organisations, individuals, and those organisations comprised of just one individual for projects requiring up to €50k of funding. The projects should be very early stage with ideas that have not been designed or their assumptions tested. Up to 100% of the total project cost is available. 

Funding for a Prototype Project arrow
Medium Prototype
Medium Projects

The medium funding track is only open to organisations, preferably with at least one journalist on the team and is for projects which require up to €300k of funding. Funding requests can be made of up to 70% of the total cost of the project. 

Important: In this round all medium applications need to include a clearly defined monetisation component.

Funding for a Medium Project arrow
Large Prototype
Large Projects

The large track is also only open to organisations, preferably with more than one journalist on the team. These applications require more than €300k of funding. Funding requests can be made for up to 70% of the total cost of the project. Funding is capped at €1m. 

Important: In this round all large applications need to include a clearly defined monetisation component.

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