By Alexis Krieg, Omidyar Network
Compelling journalism is more than just a series of headlines; it’s a formidable force that shapes public discourse, holds power to account, and brings new ideas to life. At Omidyar Network, we believe this type of reporting is critical in shaping more equitable and inclusive societies. That’s why we launched the Reporters in Residence program at the beginning of this year. Since then, we’ve worked with six talented freelance journalists who have covered a wide range of issues tying back to the economy. Now, we’re recruiting for our next class.
About the Reporters in Residence program
The Reporters in Residence program is a unique initiative aimed at empowering journalists who are committed to addressing critical economic issues through their work. This program is designed to enable a group of freelance journalists to devote more time to the type of deep, nuanced reporting that drives national conversations and informs policy debates. Our goal is to provide participants with the resources, networks, and support they need to tell more stories with even more impact.
The program sits within Omidyar Network’s Reimagining Capitalism focus area — which works to shape a new, inclusive economy where markets serve the interests of all people and society — and includes Worker Power; Corporations, Capital Markets & the Common Good, and New Economic Paradigms among its priorities. The three reporters selected for the program will take on beats in alignment with these areas, exploring topics such as the growing movement for worker solidarity, the changing role of corporations in society, and new policy ideas that could fundamentally alter the shape of our economy.
During the residency, each reporter will be expected to individually develop, pitch, and publish approximately one piece a month related to their core topic area. They will have regular access to Omidyar Network’s Reimagining Capitalism team, and our diverse network of partners. As part of our commitment to transparency and journalistic independence, Omidyar Network will have no editorial discretion over reporters’ work.
The Winter 2024 cohort will run from January to June of 2024, with an in-person convening in Washington, DC during the first half of the residency. Each reporter will receive a stipend of $8,000 a month and a $2,000 travel budget (totaling $50,000).
Application and interview process
To apply, candidates should submit a resume, links to three relevant news clips, and a short statement describing the kinds of stories they would like to cover during the residency, and indicating which of the three programmatic areas they would like to focus on.
The application period will be open from October 2 to November 3, and interviews will be conducted in November. The interview process will consist of an initial round of interviews with the relevant program officer. Candidates who advance to the second round of interviews with our programs team but are not selected for the residency will receive a $2,500 stipend. The Winter 2024 cohort will be announced on December 13.
More about current & past residents
Journalists from our inaugural and current classes have published dozens of stories that have run in a wide variety of outlets, including ABC News, Fast Company, In These Times, Mother Jones, The Nation, The New York Times, Slate, and Teen Vogue, among many others.
Megan Greenwell, Robin Kaiser-Schatzlein, and Hamilton Nolan are members of the Summer 2023 cohort, and have already published pieces on a range of topics, including how the government could fund union organizing; the story of how a group of activists took on the telecom industry; and digging into employee ownership models in private equity.
Members of the inaugural Reporters in Residence class covered everything from the Federal Reserve’s approach to addressing inflation to how the decline of unions and government regulation has contributed to a resurgence of black lung disease.
Kim Kelly, a freelance labor journalist, author, and organizer who was part of the Winter 2023 cohort described the impact of the program best:
“This residency has made such a massive difference for me. The support from the Omidyar Network team was invaluable, and the stability and peace of mind it afforded me was priceless. It gave me the breathing room I needed to dig into stories that may have otherwise gone untold.”