Call for nominations: Free Media Awards 2023

February 9 2023

In collaboration with the ZEIT Foundation of Hamburg, the Fritt Ord Foundation has allocated the Free Media Awards annually since 2004 to Eastern European journalists and media that defy every obstacle to tirelessly ensure independent press coverage. Russia’s war against Ukraine and the subsequent wave of disinformation clearly demonstrate the need for independent reporting in the region. Journalists and media in Armenia, Azerbaijan, Belarus, Georgia, Russia and Ukraine that promote freedom of the press through their investigative and independent reporting are eligible to be nominated for the Free Media Awards.

The Fritt Ord Foundation and the ZEIT-Stiftung hereby invite nominations of independent journalists, Internet media and newspapers for the 2023 Free Media Awards.

Nominations will be accepted until 1 March 2023, and should include an explanation of why the journalist or media outlet is considered to be a good candidate for the Free Media Awards. Please note that nominations should include references to the quality of their work. The nomination statements should be 1 to 2 pages long, and include a short biography and links to articles, where relevant. To qualify for nomination, journalists and media outlets must have demonstrated a commitment to democracy and freedom of expression.

Please send nominations by e-mail to
If you prefer to send the nomination by Signal, please send an e-mail to for further instructions. 

Do not hesitate to contact Fritt Ord if you have any questions about the nomination process.

The Fritt Ord Foundation and the ZEIT Foundation will be awarding 3 to 5 press prizes in 2023.

Honorees in 2022 included photographers Mstyslav Chernov and Evgeniy Maloletka, journalist and author Nataliya Gumenyuk, the online newspaper Zaborona, photo- and video-correspondent Andriy Dubchak and journalist Vladyslav Yesypenko, who is currently being held as a political prisoner. In addition, special recognition was given to Ukrainian “fixers” who support the work of international correspondents, recognizing the efforts of individuals who often risk their lives to provide independent news coverage.

The prize laureates are chosen on the basis of nominations, which are then reviewed by an independent jury. The jury for the Free Media Awards consists of Ane Tusvik Bonde, senior advisor at the Human Rights House Foundation, Alice Bota, reporter for Eastern Europe for Die Zeit, Juri Durkot, freelance journalist and translator, Guri Norstrøm, foreign correspondent for the Norwegian National Broadcasting Corporation, Martin Paulsen, head of department, Department of Foreign Languages at the University of Bergen, and Silvia Stöber, reporter and editor at the investigative department of the Tagesschau of the public broadcaster ARD.

Read more about the awards, the nomination process and the former recipients here: Free Media Awards – Fritt Ord


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