SAJA Reporting Fellowships

As part of their mission to encourage in-depth coverage of South Asia and the South Asian Diaspora, SAJA and SAJA Group Inc are pleased to announce changes to its flagship SAJA Reporting Fellowship program (SRF), which will now provide greater flexibility while streamlining the application process. Journalists will have two opportunities each year to apply for the fellowship, once each fall and spring, which we envision allows them to pitch more timely under-reported pieces. The spring round 2011 opens April 18, 2011.

The application process has also been simplified. Journalists will now submit a short application that asks for their pitch and credentials. If the application is approved by our judges, SAJA will ask for more details about the project.

With those changes in mind, SAJA and SAJA Group Inc. announces a call for submissions for the SAJA Reporting Fellowship. Open to freelancers and staff journalists in any medium, the fellowships are meant to encourage in-depth reporting projects by providing grants to cover a portion of reporting expenses.

A total of up to $20,000 may be given out annually, divided among projects or a single project at SAJA’s discretion. Each fellowship award is typically between $3,000-$7,000. 

These Fellowships, launched in 2005 to ensure follow-up reportage about the 2004 tsunami and its victims, were initially funded by SAJA members, corporate donors and friends of SAJA. For the last five years, SRF received a major financial boost thanks to the support of the Mahadeva Family Foundation, which will make an annual contribution of $20,000. “The support of Kumar Mahadeva and Simi Ahuja, who have been part of the SAJA community for more than a decade, is critical to SAJA’s core mission of improving the coverage of South Asia through the SAJA Reporting Fellowships and similar programs,” said Sandeep Junnarkar, the group’s Awards & Fellowships chair and professor at the CUNY Graduate School of Journalism. “This is going to have a major impact on the kind of stories that the Fellows do and how Americans learn about what’s going on in South Asia today.” 

In the 2011 spring period, the fellowship is open to proposals on any in-depth topics covering South Asia or the South Asian Diaspora.

SAJA will start accepting preliminary proposals on starting April 18-May 2. After reviewing the proposals and credentials, we will inform applicants whether we are interested in a full proposal. The deadline for the complete proposal, with supporting materials will be May 15, 11:59 p.m. Eastern Time

Full program details, F.A.Q and application at