Introducing MIJN: A Vision For Investigative Journalism

Do you want to travel as part of an investigation this year? The Modern Investigative Journalism Network (MIJN) is seeking to help investigative journalism students with ambitious projects, its founders said on Friday.

“We set up the MIJN so maintain the network we had created studying investigative journalism at Gothenburg University,” said Hanna Tuulonen, MIJN treasurer and now a freelance journalist.

“Being a part of the organisation will help in seeking and getting funds, and support from other members.”

MIJN is applying to grant-giving and philanthropic organisations, to raise money for journalistic investigations. It was set up in March 2017 by students of the Master’s Programme in Investigative Journalism (MIJ) at JMG, University of Gothenburg.

“We chose to identify ourselves as investigative journalists to denote the type of agenda-setting, quality journalism that our members strive for,” said Alexandra Lembke, MIJN chairperson, who is now a freelance journalist and teacher.

“It looks better if you apply for money with an organisation behind you, but also we can help each other with our combined expertise in different areas, such a languages and law.”

The MIJN is now applying for grants from organisations such as the Open Society. The first grant wil be a crucial milestone, Hanna and Alexandra agreed.

‘We can help each other with our combined expertise in different areas’

Hanna’s MA thesis on journalism robots has led to an invitation for her to speak at South by Southwest, the annual conglomerate of film, interactive media, and music festivals and conferences that take place in mid-March in Austin, Texas.

Alexandra’s investigation of Luis Vuitton factories in Romania was published by the Guardian in June. Other published work by former students has been collected on the MIJN website.

The idea for MIJN came from Dima Stoianov, a Moldovan student with experience of applying for EU grants for journalism. MIJN membership is open to anyone; it is governed by a board that includes teachers on the MA programme. MIJN currently has members from 13 countries.

The board of the Master’s programme will discuss how best to support the MIJN later this month.

Hanna had some advice for this year’s students. “The earlier you start your investigative or thesis projects the better – prepare yourselves, it is hard work,” she said.

For more information, please write to the MIJN here: http://www.mijnetwork.org/about-us/

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