In the past year, Covid has brought disruption and uncertainty to journalists and newsrooms just as it did to all Australians, and people around the world. But amid those challenges, it has never been more important for Australians to be able to rely on our journalists for ethical, impactful reporting that informs, educates and serves.

It is now time to reflect on your best work as we open entries for the 66th Walkley Awards for Excellence in Journalism, on July 1, 2021. Stories published or broadcast from September 1, 2020 to August 31, 2021 are eligible for this year’s Awards.

What are the stories that had impact, that elicited a response, that made you proud to be a journalist?

You can see all the categories explained online here, to plan where your story has its best chance. And the friendly Walkley team is here to help with any questions you have. Scroll down for all the contacts and links you’ll need.

In minor changes to the categories this year, we want to emphasise that artists and illustrators are eligible to enter All Media: Production. In Radio Audio Feature, if entrants are submitting a podcast series they must enter a maximum of three episodes and no more than 90 minutes of total audio for the judges to listen to.

The Walkley Photography categories continue unchanged. However there will be some changes to the Nikon prizes. These are outlined in the categories explained

The Walkley Awards celebrate the highest standard of Australian journalism. As the industry develops we expect to see its leadership and our award-winners grow to reflect the diversity of the Australian population and media industry. There is still work to be done, and for us it starts with making sure our programs, opportunities and awards are accessible to the widest possible range of emerging, aspiring and experienced journalists.

We hope to see a diversity of entries from journalists around Australia. In each category, a panel of peer judges will select three finalists on the basis of overall merit and journalistic excellence. Judges are selected by the Walkley Judging Board. The Judging Board represents the industry, and a range of formats, outlets and organisations. After the first round judges have selected the finalists in each category, the board members come together for a long day of discussion and debate to select the Walkley winners from the finalists.

The Walkley Foundation has a mechanism for dealing with any conflict of interest, actual or perceived, that may arise during the judging process. The guidelines are based on the principle that all actual conflicts of interest are to be avoided and that even a perceived conflict may be damaging to all parties. 

Good luck!

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