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Terms of Reference

Contest for selection of four partners from local media in Georgia


within Access to Information and Audience Understanding Project
(AI/AU)

29 June, 2018
1. General Information
Internews Georgia is launching a four-year Access to Information and Audience Understanding
Project. The project aims to increase citizen access to information about issues of importance
in public affairs, strengthen the sustainability of targeted media outlets, and better link local
media and the communities they serve. This will be achieved through series of activities aimed
at enhancing select media’s understanding of audience needs, better tailoring their content to
audience needs, and solidifying media’s financial sustainability.

By means of all its activities in Georgia, the project will improve the quality of media content
and financial sustainability of partner media outlets through enhanced understanding of
audience needs.

In the first year of the project (May to December, 2018), Internews Georgia will select four
media partners through competitive process, and offer partners consultations and trainings
aimed at building skills in audience research, analytics, and data-driven decision-making. A
series of in-house residencies will involve trained and experienced local audience analytics
and web development experts, who will visit outlets for targeted support. These experts will
help media partners develop ideas for audience outreach, data-driven content production and
monetization. These in-house residences will run from August through November.
In September, Internews Georgia will hold a competition to distribute small grants to support
the development of initiatives designed to address the information needs of specific
communities (with a preference for marginalized groups) and innovative solutions that would
help target media to improve audience outreach, quality of content, and financial
sustainability. Project partners will participate in the competition to receive grants of 4,546
GB Pounds (issued as an equivalent amount in Georgian national currency) for innovative
content production, audience interaction or monetization projects. (If a partner or partners
submit weak proposals, the proposals will be rejected and a new competition will be held
with participation from both partner and non-partner media.)

2. Obligations and Responsibilities of Partner Outlets


- Participation in all training and consulting activities of the project (week-long
mentoring residency twice a year and 5-day remote mentoring on audience analysis and
engagement);
- Periodical reporting on activities and expenses in an
established format.

3. Conditions Needed to Apply for the Contest


- Reputation and proven attachment to the standards of professional ethics;
- At least 3 years of presence on the web and well-developed website;
- Past achievements in journalism;
- Solid vision for the development of organization’s website and web and social media
presence, to include innovative solutions to improve quality of web content, audience
outreach, and financial monetization and sustainability.

4. Contents of the Application (proposal and portfolio)


Proposal
- general presentation of the participating outlet, including its achievements in
journalism and past impactful projects;
- Information about participating outlet’s website, its audience metrics (audience
size/unique users in last 6 months) and social media channels (size of followers/
subscribers, links to highly interactive posts).
- The vision and strategy for the development of participating outlet’s website and social
media presence and audience growth (to include innovative ideas for better web
content, audience expansion and interaction, and monetization and sustainability.
Portfolio
- 5 best web-based journalism materials as a printed copy or a link (stories, audio or
video reports, blogs, multimedia).
5. Selection Criteria
Applications will be evaluated based on:
- Professionalism of the contest participant (the outlet/participant(s) produces high
quality and impactful journalism; has reputation and proven attachment to the
standards of professional ethics; – maximum 20 points;
- Solid web presence – (the outlet has a developed website, with multimedia content and
growing audience size (unique users), interacts with audiences through the website and
social media; outlet’s website has necessary technology to support multimedia
reporting and audience interaction) – maximum 20 points;
- Quality of the general concept of the development of website and social media
presence (to include innovative solutions for quality of web content, audience
outreach, and financial monetization and sustainability) – maximum 40 points;
- Quality of portfolio (quality of materials in the portfolio, diversity of materials,
experience of coverage of topics of major public interest) – maximum 20 points.

Incomplete applications will be rejected.


Winners will be designated by the project’s Coordinating Council based on a points system
shown above.

6. Deadline for Submission of Applications:


Applications shall be emailed (in Georgian language) to shorena@internews.ge by July 20,
2018, at 18.00, or presented in person at the Internews Georgia office at the following
address:

Internews Georgia
11 Andria Apakidze Street, Tbilisi, Georgia, Tiflis Business Center, 8th Floor
Contact person: Shorena Kochiashvili, project assistant, email: shorena@internews.ge , cell
598 404 401.

Internews Georgia’s Access to Information and Audience Understanding Project is


implemented with the support of Internews (Audience Understanding and Digital
Support Project) and funded by Sweden.