What is UNDP storytelling contest on climate change?

UNDP, together with other international partners, aims to provide young journalists in developing countries a platform to contribute to the global dialogue on climate change on the run up to COP21. The goal of the contest is to raise awareness of the challenges most vulnerable countries face as well as the solutions to mitigate and adapt to climate change. Who can participate?

Who can participate?

Journalists working in the developing world are invited to submit their stories on climate change.

Journalists must meet the following criteria in order to enter the contest:

  • Entrants must be aged 35 or under on the closing day of the call for entries;
  • They must be working in low and middle income countries, please refer to the World Bank list of countries here;
  • They must contribute regularly to a recognized print and/or online media as staff or freelance contributor.

Journalists can team up but the maximum number of people in a team is 3. The team can be designated as the winner of the contest. However, only one person from the team will be invited to COP21.

What kind of story can be submitted?

All story ideas are welcome, but we have a special interest in articles that address the impact of climate change on human rights (impact on health & work environment, access to food and water, right to live in a specific community, etc.) and the solutions that can impact positively local communities.

Both published and unpublished stories are eligible but stories have to be published between August 24th and October 11th to be considered. If a story is unpublished by October 11th, the journalists need to submit a letter from their editor confirming intent for publication and tentative date of publication.

Stories’ length needs to be 600 to 1000 words long and include at least 5 pictures.  

Why should you participate?

  • We expect journalists through their entry to contribute to the national and international dialogue on climate change on the run up to the COP21 agreement and learn from this process.
  • Journalists will gain exposure for their work. Entries will be published on UNDP website and disseminated through our partners’ channels.
  • The authors of the best two stories will be invited to attend and cover the COP21 in December in Paris.
  • The participants - if they are interested in the mentoring approach - will be paired with a senior journalist who offer comments and advices on the entry.

Can I submit multiple entries?

The journalists can submit only ONE entry, either individually or as a team, to UNDP climate change story telling contest.


A selection panel will review all entries and score them according the following criteria:

  • Technical aspects (grammar, style, punctuation, etc.)
  • Substance (accuracy of climate change information)
  • How well the story is told
  • Pictures
  • Dissemination and potential impact on public debate

Deadline to submit an entry

Journalists can submit their entry on a rolling basis between August 27th and October 11th 2015. However the contest won’t accept entries after October 11th 2015, Midnight CET.

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