Walkley Young Australian Journalist of the Year Awards

The Walkley Young Australian Journalist of the Year Awards recognise and reward the hard work of our most outstanding young Australian journalists.

In 2020, these awards will recognise those aged 28 and under who demonstrate excellence in the fundamental tenets of the craft as well as the ability to present distinctive and original journalism that pushes the boundaries of the profession.

Entries open from Monday March 9 until Sunday April 26

Winners announced at the 2020 Mid-Year Celebration of Journalism in Sydney on June 17

Walkley Young Australian Journalist of the Year Categories

  • All media: Shortform Journalism, (supported by ABC)
  • All media: Longform Feature or Special (supported by The Sydney Morning Herald & The Age)
  • All media: Coverage of Community & Regional Affairs (Supported by Google News Initiative)
  • All media: Visual Storytelling (Supported by Sky NEWS)
  • All media: Public Service Journalism (Supported by News Corp Australia)
  • All media: ​Student Journalist of the Year (Supported by Macleay College)

The winner of each category goes into the running to named Walkley Young Australian Journalist of the Year.

See the full list of 2019 Mid-Year Celebration finalists here.

Entries open now until April 26

The prize

All category winners will receive mentoring from a senior journalist.

The winners of all six categories will also automatically go into the draw to be named as the Walkley Young Australian Journalist of the Year. Through the funding of the Jibb Foundation, the organisation supporting this award, the 2020 prize-winner will receive:

  • a paid two-week trip to US newsrooms
  • receive mentorship from senior journalists

Entry fee

A philanthropic grant from the Jibb Foundation subsidies entry fees, allowing them to remain at $50 for all categories except for the Student Journalist of The Year award, which is free to enter.

Entry remains free for MEAA union members.

Judging criteria

The Walkley Young Australian Journalist of the Year aims to encourage and recognise the rising stars of Australian journalism. Winners will be selected on the basis of journalistic excellence in the fundamental tenets of the craft as well as the ability to present distinctive and original journalism that pushes the boundaries of the profession.

Judges will be looking for the individual they think has made the most impact, but in general criteria will include:

  • How the story was initiated and followed (with particular credit given for instigating or finding a story)
  • Newsworthiness, including exclusivity
  • Creativity and innovation
  • Research and investigation
  • Balance, accuracy and ethics
  • Consideration of production pressures or deadlines and time constraints
  • Consideration of the resources available
  • Demonstration of best use of the format/s in which the work was published or broadcast, including clever choices in storytelling through multimedia
  • Excellence in written or verbal communication and/or technical and production skill
  • Public impact or benefit, including audience engagement and serving specific communities

Conditions of entry

The 2020 awards are open to young journalists 28 years and under, employed full-time or freelance, who have self-published or had work published or broadcast through Australian media outlets, including online publishers, between April 27, 2019 and April 26, 2020.

Enter Here

Contact us

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