Journalists Celia Pousset and Jennifer Avila.
Journalists Celia Pousset and Jennifer Avila. © Jennifer Avila/Twitter

IWPR’s Latin America Work Wins Multiple Journalism Awards

Investigations have been recognised by prestigious juries representing the EU, UN and national awards.

Thursday, 21 December, 2023


Institute for War & Peace Reporting

IWPR and its partners in Latin American and the Caribbean have supported journalists to win a swathe of awards in 2023 in some of the world’s most dangerous countries for the profession. 

The work has included investigating organised crime rings, highlighting high-level corruption networks and uncovering severe human rights violations in countries like El Salvador, Honduras, Cuba, Venezuela, Peru, Mexico and Guatemala. 

Award-winning journalism supported by IWPR’s programmes has also demonstrated how governments spread misinformation and has revealed abuses including environmental destruction and rights violations. 

Many of the investigations supported by IWPR’s programmes this year have demonstrably led to important impacts in their countries, including the resignation of a corrupt public servant, the closure of fake social media accounts and guidelines seeking improvements to public health policy. Stories are also being used as part of judicial, parliamentary and police proceedings to shed further light on shady government and business practices. 

Mexican media outlet Poplab’s It isn’t Collateral Damage showed how children and youth have become key victims of organised crime in the state of Guanajuato. The story won the Mexican National Journalism Prize in the reportage category and was shortlisted for the UN Information Center’s Breach / Valdez Prize for Journalism and Human Rights.

Venezuelan journalists Claudia Smolansky and Carmen Victoria Inojosa celebrating their win of the prestigious European Union prize. © Comisión Europea

Independent journalists Claudia Smolansky, Carmen Victoria Inojosa and an anonymous colleague were awarded both the EU’s Lorenzo Natali Prize for International Journalism and IPYS Venezuela’s top prize for investigative journalism for their Torture is your Neighbour. The investigation, published by CAPIR partner,showed how the Venezuelan government use houses in residential areas as hidden torture centres.

C-Informa, a coalition of media outlets and NGOs in Venezuela formed through IWPR’s Consortium to Support Journalists in the Region (CAPIR) programme to counter disinformation, was awarded the Inter American Press Association Prize for Journalism Excellence in the category of data journalism. The coalition’s story Uncovered: The Disinformation Factory threatening Democracy in Venezuela revealed the illegitimate methods used by Venezuela’s Maduro government to use Instagram to malign the opposition. 

Contracorriente’s Cecilia Pousset was awarded an honorary mention by the Conference for Investigative Journalism in Latin America (COLPIN) for her investigation The Sacred Narco Mountain, showing how residents of towns overtaken by traffickers and corrupt companies continue to be victimised. 

Another prestigious award overseen by the Gabo Foundation was delivered to a group of journalists from Cuba who can not be named for security reasons. 

The journalists IWPR support face threats to their security, limits to their right to access information and other impediments. But despite these challenges they have been able to produce some of the best journalism in the region.

Six of the seven prizes awarded in 2023 have come through CAPIR. IWPR and or implementing partners Animal Politico, Chequeado (Argentina), Ojo Publico (Peru), Vinalnd (Mexico) and Data Critica (Mexico), provided funding, security and investigative journalism training, as well as mentorship that supported the reporters to publish these high impact stories. For more information about the programme see IWPR’s webpage or the Spanish language CAPIR website.

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