Shortlist for Young Journalist Award 2023 revealed

An astonishing array of talented journalists from around the world have made it through to the shortlist for the Thomson Foundation Young Journalist Award 2023. 

The prestigious annual award, held in partnership with the UK Foreign Press Association (FPA), is open to journalists aged 30 and under from countries with a Gross National Income (GNI) per capital of less than USD$20,000. 

The quality of the work was frequently outstanding.

Gavin Allen, a former associate editor for the UK’s Daily Mirror website

This year, more than 240 journalists from 59 countries sent us their best stories for consideration 

The quality of the work was frequently outstanding, says Gavin Allen, a former associate editor for the UK’s Daily Mirror website, who joined the judging panel for the first time.  

I salute these young journalists, who are so often working in difficult and sometimes downright dangerous conditions. They're already better and more brave than I ever was, says Mr Allen, who is a digital journalism lecturer at Cardiff University.

The 2023 Shortlist  

The following twelve journalists have been shortlisted to go through to the next round in the competition.  

The plight of child brides in the western Indian state of Gujarat is revealed by journalist Himanshi Dahiya writing in The Quint. Her report exposes how young pregnant girls are being denied access to nutrition.  

Intercepted at Sea: The deadly reality of border control is the title of a report by Yara El Murr from Lebanon. In her story for The Public Source, Yara recounts the story of a brother and sister who attempt to travel by boat to Europe in search of a better life.  


Yara El Murr

Many of the investigations by this year’s entrants have had a big impact including a report by Anton Delgado in Cambodia. The report in the Southeast Asia Globe uncovers allegations of wildlife trafficking and examines the impact of the Covid-19 pandemic on the trade. 

Giving voice to people who are often marginalised is a common thread in this year’s shortlist. Writing for HumAngle in Nigeria, journalist Kunle Adebajo interviews women who are on the frontline fighting the Islamist militant group Boko Haram. 

In Pakistan, a former Thomson Foundation mentee, Jamaima Afridi talks to women in tribal districts who are battling for their inheritance rights for her story in 

Whilst in Syria, it’s the plight of stateless children born to foreign parents who were affiliated with extremist groups, which is put in the spotlight by Helez Fateh for North Press Agency. Helez talks to several mothers whose children are unable to access education and face social exclusion. 


Extensive work went into many investigations particularly when it came to finding the stories hidden in data. In Serbia, Teodora Ćurčić laid bare her analysis behind 117 cases of femicide in the country in her report for the Center for Investigative Journalism of SerbiaThe investigation was raised in the country’s parliament.  

‘16 Children Died Within Days. Experts Blame This Megacity’s Toxic Air’ was the powerful heading in a VICE news report by Zuha Siddiqui in Pakistan which examined the deaths of children in an area of Karachi.  

Journalist Shubhangi Misra submitted a series of reports published in The Print investigating the POSH (prevention of sexual harassment) laws in India. She spoke to women in athletics, academia and the arts. 


Kapil Kajal

Meanwhile, a ‘sextortion’ racket is exposed by Kapil Kajawho spoke to scammers operating from a village in India about how they make a living from cyber fraud and blackmail for his piece published by Rest of World.  

Video and TV journalists also entered the competition. In one of his reports for Jamuna Television Raihan Ferdaus from Bangladesh uncovered poor safety standards at private health clinics in the country and allegations of fraud at blood banks. 

The beauty yet remoteness of parts of the Philippines can be seen in reports by Lilian Tiburcio for GMA News. In one film she tells the story of the helicopter medics who deliver healthcare to people living in remote areas. 

The final judging

The three finalists for the award will be chosen from the shortlist of 12. This year’s judging panel are journalists Marcela Gutiérrez Bobadilla (W Radio, Mexico), Tristan de Bourbon Parme (La Libre Belgique, Belgium), and Antonella Zangaro (il Giornale, Italy)The winner will be announced at the Foreign Press Association Awards in London, UK on November 20, 2023. 

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