The 10 participants for this year’s Balkan Fellowship for Journalistic Excellence have been chosen

The programme received 99 applications; the selection committee chose 10 participants from across the region.

Applicants from around the Balkan region pitched their story ideas on “TRUTH”, the theme for this year’s edition of the BFJE. A selection committee had to make some tough choices and evaluate the applications based on the relevance, feasibility and originality of the proposals, as well as the professional qualifications, motivation and journalistic approach of the applicants.

We appreciate the time and effort that goes into every application and encourage those who were not successful to consider applying again next year.

Here are the fellows for 2018, listed alphabetically by surname:

Arlis Alikaj
Ioana Burtea
Claudia Ciobanu
Alexander Clapp
Ivana Jeremić
Lorelei Mihala
Andrea Milat
Anđela Milivojević
Leonida Molliqaj
Dusica Pavlovic


BFJE 2018 kicks off in Vienna

Fake news merchants, corrupt officials and political thugs are just a few of the targets in the crosshairs of journalists chosen for the 2018 Balkan Fellowship for Journalistic Excellence.


Unsafe Haven: Life and Death for LGBT Refugees

Shunned, abused, murdered. For many LGBT asylum seekers in Turkey and Greece, every day is a struggle for survival.

Topic 2018

Topic 2018: Truth

In an era of fake news and “alternative facts”, the theme of this year’s fellowship is TRUTH. Do you have a lie to expose, a myth to shatter or a deception to deconstruct? Can you bring clarity and insight to a complex or confusing story?

Fellowship Articles

/en/file/show/IMG_1652_tb.jpg 09 May 2018 / 13:35

Smoke and Mirrors: A Macedonian Spy Mystery

Benjamin Arifi
/en/file/show/Kikinda comparison_low res_tb.jpg 22 Mar 2018 / 15:33

Toxic Taps: Arsenic in Water Stirs Cancer Fears

Milos Stanic
/en/file/show/alexia_tsagkari01_Larathb.jpg 23 Jan 2018 / 12:43

Unsafe Haven: Life and Death for LGBT Refugees

Alexia Tsagkari
/en/file/show/care thm.jpg 28 Dec 2017 / 10:41

Access Denied: Divorced Dads Fight for Kids

Zdravko Ljubas
/en/file/show/medicines_tb.jpg 01 Dec 2017 / 12:30

Parallel Profits: Bulgaria’s Medical Drug Dealers

Dimitar Iliev
/en/file/show/2_edit_IMG_6593 tmb.jpg 30 Nov 2017 / 12:24

Fatal Inaction: How Measles Made a Comeback

Octavian Coman

Fellows' Diaries

20 Jul 2018 / 12:25

No Limit to Extra Time in Montenegrin Political Football

Dusica Pavlovic
12 Jul 2018 / 13:30

How ‘Sultan Erdogan’ Rallied the Faithful in Sarajevo

Alexander Clapp
09 Jul 2018 / 12:29

Romania’s LGBT Community Rallies Against Intolerance

Claudia Ciobanu
07 Aug 2017 / 11:30

Choppy Waters in the Fight against Montenegrin Poachers

Ivan Cadjenovic
31 Jul 2017 / 11:07

Hungary’s Battle of the Billboards

Milos Stanic

About the Programme

What is the Fellowship?

Journalists from the Balkans are increasingly required to cover complex reform issues, taking in a regional and Europe-wide dimension. The fellowship provides editorial guidance, training and adequate funding to do so.



Fellowship Publication 2015: Values

What is precious to us? That question is at the heart of the concept of 'Values', the theme for this collection of reportage.

/en/file/show/publications 2014 generations.jpg

Fellowship Publication 2014: Generations

Generations: Stories of Social Change in the Balkans is the product of original research of ten journalists selected from South East Europe to participate in 2014 Balkan Fellowship for Journalistic Excellence.


Fellowship Publication 2013: Integrity

The 2013 topic – Integrity – has been interpreted by the journalists in a variety of ways,touching on themes such as the protection of whistleblowers, corruption, media ethicsand the legacy of war. 


Fellowship Publication 2012: Communities

The theme for this year’s fellowship could scarcely have been broader. After all, almost any group of individuals can be classed as a COMMUNITY. But the generous scope of this topic has served our journalists well. The ten stories here redefine hazier notions of community. They give some well-worn concepts a sharper edge.


Fellowship Publication 2011: Justice

Access to justice and equality before the law are essential for the smooth functioning and well-being of any society. The quality of each and every citizen’s life is directly affected by how well the rule of law is observed in their homeland.


Fellowship Publication 2010: Taboo

Openness is a defining characteristic of the modern Western world - openness to change and to seeing people and things in a new and different light. Never before have societies appeared so ready to accept phenomena that our parents and grandparents would have kept hidden away as shameful and wrong


Fellowship Publication 2009: Identity

At the start of the 21st century, nationality remains central to most people's understanding of identity. But it does not hold the field alone.


Fellowship Publication 2008: Energy

Power Struggle: Meeting Global Energy Challenges in the Balkans is the product of original research of ten journalists selected from South East Europe to participate in 2008 programme of the Balkan Fellowship for Journalistic Excellence.


Publication 2007: Mobility

The Balkan region features a proliferation of barriers to movement of people, goods and ideas, both among the countries that make it up and vis-à-vis the European Union

The Alumni Network

What is the Alumni Network?

The Alumni Network is an ever-expanding group of journalists who have all participated in the Balkan Fellowship for Journalistic Excellence.