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Call for Proposals: Story Grants for Reporting on ASEAN Issues


Story Grants for Reporting on ASEAN Issues – CLMV Countries

They are still called ASEAN’s newer entrants, but Cambodia, Lao PDR, Myanmar and Vietnam have been members of Southeast Asia’s main regional grouping for two decades or more now. They are part of the ASEAN Community which, currently on its fourth year, has set a vision for deepening integration till 2025, and is now looking at 2040 and beyond.

The integration process of CLMV, as the group is called, into ASEAN and the ASEAN Community, involves taking in ASEAN ways and habits, as regional linkages play a bigger role in national priorities. A good amount of these countries’ commitments under the Community blueprints came into full play in 2018.

All these mean that the ASEAN story is here to stay.

In an interconnected world where the lines between regional and domestic news have become blurred, these alert journalists to many cross-border issues around CLMV’s space in the ASEAN integration project. ASEAN stories are no longer foreign stories.

Open to journalists from Cambodia, Laos, Myanmar and Vietnam

Deadline for applications: 1 March 2019

But while media coverage mentions the ASEAN Community and ASEAN integration a lot, these tend to lump CLMV issues under those of the ASEAN-6 countries – the older, more developed ASEAN states. This tends to crowd out their unique perspectives, including the challenges they face with development gaps within ASEAN. At the same time, local media houses do not always have staff focusing on ASEAN issues, or have opportunities for in-house training on regional perspectives.

The Reporting ASEAN program aims to address these news challenges by providing a professional media space for CLMV journalists to focus on improving, and using, skills for analyzing ASEAN integration and community issues. For instance, how is the CLMV group adapting to becoming ASEAN? How has ASEAN membership and integration made a difference to them, whether in foreign policy, trade and economics, education, environment or disaster management? How can journalists capture the CLMV countries’ nuances and tell their stories in a solid, engaging manner that combines interviews, statistics and people’s voices?

Reporting ASEAN’s CLMV Integration Series seeks original, relevant and creative story proposals from journalists from Cambodia, Lao PDR, Myanmar and Vietnam that focus on their countries and subregion’s engagement with ASEAN community-building.

The Reporting ASEAN program, hosted by Probe Media Foundation Inc, is an independent media venue for strengthening reporting skills and critical coverage of the role and impact of ASEAN and regional integration. The CLMV Integration Series, the program’s fourth round of fellowships since 2014, is supported by the Lower Mekong Initiative and the US State Department.


The Reporting ASEAN program is looking for quality story proposals from journalists who are curious about issues beyond their national borders and want to go beyond their regular news routines to do in-depth reporting with a regional perspective, into CLMV’s place in the larger ASEAN. Covering ASEAN issues does not mean only events at the high-level summits and ministerial meetings.

Applicants have creative room to propose stories from a wide range of themes related to ASEAN issues. This call for proposals would give priority to stories that focus on environment and sustainability (including marine waste, plastics, renewables and waste management), impact of economic integration, ASEAN identity, and challenges that are unique to CLMV.


The Integration Series is open to journalists with at least three years of experience, from the CLMV countries, who work in print, photojournalism, television/radio/audio and multimedia. It is open to both staff journalists and freelancers who can show regular work with their targeted news outlets.

Those accepted in the series would:

  • be correspondents on ASEAN/regional news issues from April to September 2019, working with the Reporting ASEAN desk
  • take part in an editorial workshop in Bangkok in April 2019 that touches on both thematic ASEAN/CLMV issues as well as storytelling skills in digital media spaces
  • have coverage grants of 600 to 800 USD to produce two story assignments on the approved topics over a three-month period (until July 2019)


The following editorial outputs are to be produced by journalists accepted in the series:

  • for print journalists: two sets of feature stories/articles totaling 1,000-1,200 words
  • for photojournalists: a photo essay of 8 selected quality photos and an accompanying narrative of up to 700 words
  • for broadcast journalists (radio and TV): two video reports of 2-3 minutes each or two podcasts/audio features of 7-8 minutes each
  • for multimedia journalists, a mix of the abovementioned print, photo, audio and/or video materials

Selected fellows would carry out this coverage project as part of their work with their media houses, because Reporting ASEAN aims to work in synergy with their newsrooms. Their stories would be published in their media outlets, whether local-language or English.

Reporting ASEAN accepts proposals in local languages. Translation will be provided during the workshop.


Reporting ASEAN encourages applicants to have the following elements in their proposals:

  • Relevance- Does the story proposal fit the series’ goals, and explain why media audiences and CLMV countries need to know about it?
  • Originality– What is new/different about the topic, be it the perspective, the subject or an under-reported aspect?
  • Creativity– How does the proposal use solid storytelling, including ways of visualization, imagery, or data presentation?
  • Preparation & Feasibility– How thorough, well researched, practical is the story plan?
  • Variety of voices– Does the story proposal consciously vary sources to include not only state voices, but those of individuals and sources from different professional backgrounds and gender?


The application kit can be downloaded here , and application forms submitted online at http://bit.ly/clmvseries2019forms.

Applicants also need to email to reportingasean@gmail.com samples of work as follows:

  • scanned copies of, or links to, clippings of three bylined articles (for print journalists)
  • three published photos/photo essays (for photojournalists)
  • at least two sample video or radio/audio segments/podcasts that have been aired, either files or online links (for broadcast – TV and radio/audio journalists)
  • scanned copies of, or links to, at least two published features/multimedia outputs (for multimedia journalists)

For questions and information, write us at reportingasean@gmail.com. 

(END/Reporting ASEAN)

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