Press Releases The best journalism of 2021: the European Press Prize announces winners.

The best journalism of 2021: the European Press Prize announces winners.

The best journalism of 2021: the European Press Prize announces winners.


The European Press Prize announces its runners-up and winners of the 2021 edition. With over 1,000 submissions from almost all countries of Europe, the winners were selected from the largest pool of submissions in the history of the prize

A legacy of strong storytelling from Poland is continued with Love in the time of plague, by Janusz Schwertner, a piece that addresses transfobia and child suicide in Poland, awarded with the Distiguished Reporting Award.

This year’s Innovation Award goes to the team of’s – after being nominated in 2017 and 2018 –  for their newest project: a chatbot for whatsapp that fact-checks information.

The very first Hungarian Press Prize winner is Iván Zsolt Nagy, winner of the Opinion Award for When Trianon hurts differently, Nagy’s personal take on the dramatic importance of the Trianon peace treaty.

The Investigative Reporting Award goes to Roman Anin for his piece: Kirill and Katya: Love, offshores, and administrative resources. How marrying Putin’s daughter gave Kirill Shamalov a world of opportunity. This April Anin was briefly detained and interrogated by the Russian police, an action suspected to be motivated by revenge for these investigations into the Kremlin elite.

Last but not least, the Panel of Judges acknowledges all the brave and independent journalists working in Belarus by awarding them this year’s Special Award. Receiving the award on their behalf, is the shortlisted project Brutalised Minsk: how Belarusian police beat protesters – a data-driven investigation on the Belarusian police violence during the anti-Lukashenko rallies.

The European Press Prize has partnered with Arena for Journalism in Europe to announce this year’s winners. Hear from the winners and the European Press Prize judges at the annual Dataharvest conference.

The 2021 Panel of Judges was composed of former editor-in-chief of The Guardian Alan Rusbridger (chair), deputy editor-in-chief at the Süddeutsche Alexandra Föderl-Schmid, deputy director at Juan Luis Sánchez, Le Monde editorial director Sylvie Kauffmann, and freelance journalist and De Volkskrant columnist Sheila Sitalsing. After carefully considering all 20 nominees on the shortlist, the jury chose five winners, four in the general categories Investigative Reporting, Distinguished Reporting, Opinion and Innovation, and one Special Award winner, for which journalists, editors and readers could enter nominations.

“I have spent a lot of time completely absorbed by these pieces. So many brave, creative, innovative and talented projects on this year’s European Press Prize shortlist. All of them terrific – it was difficult to decide,” commented Alan Rusbridger, chair of the panel of judges.

A record-breaking year

This year’s edition of the European Press Prize saw a record number of participants. More than 1,000 journalistic articles and projects were submitted, from almost all the 47 countries of the Council of Europe. This is the highest number of submissions recorded since the European Prize was founded in 2012.

“We are pleased to see that, after nine years of hard work, the European Press Prize is being regarded by journalists as one of the profession’s most important awards. That hard work is being done by all of us at the Prize, but most of all by the journalists entering their best work, and the Preparatory Committee reading all of the pieces that come in.” said Thomas van Neerbos, director of the European Press Prize.



Escape: the woman who brought her trafficker to justice by Ottavia Spaggiari (Italy), published by The Guardian (UK)


Love in the time of plague by Janusz Schwertner (Poland), published by Onet (Poland)



Money to Burn by Piret Reiljan (Estonia), Silvia Nortes (Spain), Catherine Joie (Belgium), Paul Toetzke (Germany), Hazel Sheffield (UK), Ties Gijzel (The Netherlands), Sophie Blok (The Netherlands), published by Argos (HUMAN / VPRO), Äripäev, ERR, De Groene Amsterdammer, E&T, Investico, Público, Die ZEIT Online, The Guardian, Latvijas Radio 1, 5W (The Netherlands, Estonia, UK, Spain, Germany, Latvia)

WINNER’s Whatsapp Chatbot to thrive a fact-checking operation on disinformation by (Spain), published by (Spain)



The Dark Side of Sport by Mathieu Martiniere and Daphné Gastaldi (France), published by Disclose, We Report, Mediapart, L’Equipe, France 2 and other French media (France)


Kirill and Katya: Love, offshores, and administrative resources. How marrying Putin’s daughter gave Kirill Shamalov a world of opportunity by Roman Anin, Alesya Marohovskaya, Irina Dolinina, Dmitry Velikovsky, Roman Shleynov, Sonya Savina, Olesya Shmagun, Denis Dmitriev (Russia), published by iStories, OCCRP (Russia, International)




‘Merhaba, I’m here to give up my Turkish nationality’ by Rasit Elibol (The Netherlands), published by De Groene Amsterdammer (The Netherlands)


When Trianon hurts differently by Iván Zsolt Nagy (Hungary), published by (Hungary)




The brave and independent journalists working in Belarus, represented by the shortlisted project Brutalised Minsk: how Belarusian police beat protesters, by Anastasiya Boika, Maxim Litavrin, David Frenkel, Yegor Skovoroda, Maria Tolstova, Nikita Shulaev, Dmitrii Treshchanin (contact person: Yegor Skovoroda)

All shortlisted articles are published in English on the European Press Prize website. To receive the stories in your inbox, sign up to the European Press Prize newsletter here.

Contact for republishing articles or more information from either bureau or laureates.

About the European Press Prize

The European Press Prize celebrates the highest achievements in European journalism.The prize is made possible by a number of European media foundations who strive to encourage quality journalism in Europe: The Guardian Foundation, Thomson Reuters Foundation, Politiken Foundation, Foundation Veronica, Jyllands-Posten Foundation,  Democracy and Media Foundation, The Irish Times Trust Limited, Media Development Investment Fund, Agora Foundation and Luminate.

The European Press Prize is awarded on a yearly basis in 4 categories: Distinguished Reporting, Innovation, Opinion and Investigative Reporting. The judges award a Special Award for excellent journalism to one striking entry which defies categories and disciplines. Each award is worth €10,000.


European Press Prize winners and nominees from previous years include among many others Beata Balogová (SME), Isobel Cockerell (Coda Story) and the Balkan Investigative Reporting Network in Bosnia and Herzegovina.

Preparatory committee

This year’s preparatory committee consists of Denis Staunton (The Irish Times), Wafaa Albadry (Deutsche Welle), Natalia Antelava (Coda Story), Şebnem Arsu (freelance), Beata Balogová (SME), Heikelina Verrijn Stuart (Democracy and Media Foundation), Denis Džidić (BIRN BiH. Maria Exner (ZEITmagazin), Konstanty Gebert (MDIF), Belinda Goldsmith (Thomson Reuters Foundation), Sérgio B. Gomes (P2), Anna Husarska (International Rescue Committee), Winny de Jong (NOS), Oleg Khomenok (GIJN), Cristian Lupsa (DoR), Natalie Nougayrède (The Guardian), Ida Nyegård Espersen(Berlingske), Jacopo Ottaviani (Code for Africa), Lucila Rodríguez-Alarcón (porCausa Foundation), Dimitris Theo­doro­poulos (Onassis Foundation) and Bartosz Wieliński (Gazeta Wyborcza).


Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *