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New editorial project Borderline: Apply now!

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Translation by:

Lara Bullens

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8 cities, 8 features. Cafébabel’s new editorial project Borderline focuses on Polish youth in various border cities around the country. We’re accepting applications as of now!

The goal of Cafébabel’s new editorial project Borderline is to instil a fresh outlook on Poland. We want to break with the very one-sided perception of our Polish neighbours and create features that, after 100 years of Polish independence, will focus on stories about Polish youth in the country’s border cities. The features will highlight young individuals living in these areas; they will reveal their visions of the future, their connection to the country’s history, their everyday lives, their commitment, their initiatives and their hopes, without neglecting their worries and fears.

Want to hop on board? Then apply! Here is more information on the application process:

8 cities, 8 features

The Borderline trip will take place in eight Polish cities. Four of them are on the German-Polish border: Słubice, Gubin (Guben), Zgorcelec (Görlitz) and Szczecin (Szczecin).The remaining four – Gdańsk, Białystok, Lublin and Katowice – are windows to Russia, Belarus, Ukraine and the Czech Republic/Slovakia.

In every city, we will pair up a bi-national team consisting of a journalist and a photojournalist who will create a photographic and written feature together.

This means that we are looking for a total of 16 journalists (eight journalists and eight photojournalists). Journalists and photographers from Poland and/or Europe can apply. Non-Polish journalists or photographers must have some experience reporting about the country and should have already focused some of their work in Poland.

Language requirements

The teams will be assembled so that at least one journalist speaks Polish. The features can be written in one of Cafébabel’s six official languages: English, German, French, Italian, Spanish or Polish. If a journalist’s mother tongue is not part of these six languages, they can choose to write in the language they feel most comfortable (among Cafébabel’s official languages).

These eight features will later be translated into all six languages, and will be published in a ‘scrollytelling’ format on and other media partner websites.

The participants should have a decent grasp of the English language, as the communication surrounding the project will mainly take place in English.


The research and reporting will take place in May and June 2018, respectively. In July and August, the features will be edited, translated and prepared for publication on Cafébabel. The features will be published in the magazine in September. In November, a selection of photos from the features will be presented in an exhibition space in Berlin. Journalists and photojournalists involved in the project will be reimbursed for travel expenses and accommodation costs for the exhibition in Berlin.

We are looking for:

• Journalists and photojournalists/photographers from Poland and/or Europe

• Previous professional experience in Poland

• Original, atypical and fresh generational themes

Borderline aims to tell extraordinary stories about Polish youth that strays from the typical media coverage about the country. The project will deal extensively with a part of Poland that is often rendered invisible, with its people, its initiatives, its creativity and its activism. Borderline hopes to show just how similar the lives of young people around European countries can be, regardless of their location, but also which (g)local problems they are faced with. Through the eight features, we will critically examine to what extent current political conditions in Poland reflect on the country’s history, generational debates and changing borders.

In short: it’s about stories that stray from mainstream media coverage and focus on young people in Poland today.

The eight teams will work together on feature ideas and propose them to the project leaders.

Money money money

Each journalist and photojournalist will receive 1,000 euros (per person) for their feature. From this amount, teams must account for their own travel and accommodation costs.

How to apply:

Send a meaningful CV, a short pitch (300 words max.) of what you have in mind for the feature and as many work samples you deem are relevant to the project to:

Julia Korbik, the Borderline editorial coordinator:

With a CC to Katha Kloss, editorial supervisor:

The application deadline is the 19th of February 2018


Borderline is a project led by Babel International and Babel Germany, and is funded by the Bundeszentrale für politische Bildung (bpb). 

Translated from Neues Reportage-Projekt Borderline: Bewirb dich jetzt!