Strap yourselves in — we’ve got 100 or so longlisted projects to introduce and a few emerging themes in Australian media innovation to unpack for you based on the 2017 entries to Australia’s only journalism ventures incubator.
Let me start with a bit of context: For the past three years, the Walkley Foundation has ran an innovation grants program, complete with a workshop or two for the finalist projects. Around a hundred projects entered each year, with 25 receiving training and three to eight receiving grant funding.
This year, we extended the program significantly and brought in several of Australia’s best startup mentors to make sure as many projects as possible get access to transformational education to turn their idea into a viable and experimental venture. This year, 162 projects were entered, around 100 will receive training in the incubator program and three to eight will receive grant funding.
This radical step-up in the number of projects selected is because this year we are doubling down on training. We’ve created a three-stage online incubator program (details here) so more media innovators can benefit from our program and build ventures that flourish.
The full list of longlisted projects that will be entering the incubator program is at the bottom of this post. It’s only project names and teams as there are too many to summarise them all. I’ve explored four projects that speak to the key themes we found running through the applications. This is important context about the projects we selected, but also about the diversity of innovation thinking in the Australian media community.