Global news agency AFP has launched the 2014 edition of the Kate Webb Prize, which is awarded to a locally-hired journalist in Asia for exceptional coverage done in dangerous or difficult conditions.
It carries a 3,000 euro (4,000 USD) cash prize and applications are open until April 18.
The winner will be announced in May and will be invited to a prize-giving ceremony.
The prize is named after Kate Webb, one of the finest correspondents to have worked for AFP, who died in 2007 at the age of 64. Kate would have celebrated her 71st birthday on March 24. The prize is awarded for exceptional work produced by locally-employed Asian journalists operating in hostile situations.
“Journalists are facing increasing challenges in pursuit of their work,’ said AFP’s Asia-Pacific Director Gilles Campion. ‘Attacks on freedom of the press are growing and journalists are regularly targeted in conflict situations. Coverage of Typhoon Haiyan in the Philippines exposed the physical and psychological challenges the media face in reporting natural disasters to the world.’
The Kate Webb Prize offers international recognition for journalistic excellence to locally-hired journalists reporting the news, he added.
‘With their in-depth knowledge, local reporters play a crucial role in covering Asia both for domestic and international media, and often at great personal risk,” Campion said.
Born in New Zealand, Kate Webb earned a reputation as a fearless reporter while covering wars and other historic events in Asia during a career spanning four decades. She first made her name in Vietnam and also worked in Cambodia, Indonesia, Thailand, the Philippines, India, South Korea and the Middle East. She was known for her kindness and compassion and became a mentor to younger Asian journalists.
The prize is administered by the AFP Foundation – a non-profit-making organization set up to promote press freedom through training journalists in developing countries – and by the Webb family. It was first awarded in 2008, to Pakistani reporter Mushtaq Yusufzai for his coverage of the dangerous tribal lands bordering on Afghanistan. In 2009 it recognized the work of the Philippines Centre for Investigative Journalism (PCIJ) and in 2011 was awarded to Dilnaz Boga, an Indian reporter and photographer, for her courageous investigative work in Indian-administered Kashmir.
Last year’s recipient was Indonesian investigative journalist Stefanus Teguh Edi Pramono for his coverage of the conflict in Syria and his undercover investigation into Jakarta’s dangerous and murky drug world.
This year’s prize is open to local reporters, photographers and broadcast journalists in Asia, including camera crew, for work done between January 1 and December 31, 2013. Stringers and freelance journalists may submit entries as well.
Articles and broadcast material may be submitted in English or any Asian national language, provided that there is English translation which has been certified as accurate.
Details of the prize are available on the Kate Webb Prize Facebook page. Applications should be sent to firstname.lastname@example.org.
AFP is a global news agency delivering fast, accurate, in-depth coverage of the events shaping our world from conflicts to politics, sports, entertainment and the latest breakthroughs in health, science and technology. With 2,260 journalists spread across almost every country, AFP covers the world 24 hours a day in six languages. AFP delivers the news in video, text, photos, multimedia and graphics to a wide range of customers including newspapers and magazines, radio and TV channels, web sites and portals, mobile operators, corporate clients as well as public institutions.