Google invites project proposals from publishers and journalists


Google has announced its Asia-Pacific GNI Innovation Challenge in India, under its News Initiative. The aim of the challenge is to get proposals from publishers and journalists that are aimed at increasing the revenue from readers. The selected projects will be funded by Google and the company will not only provide up to US$ 300,000 but also finance up to 70% of the total project cost.

In Asia-Pacific, journalists and publishers are increasingly grappling with questions over how quality journalism can thrive in the digital age. From Yangon to Manila, Sydney to New Delhi, they are experimenting with fresh approaches to reporting and new business models.

Google has been working hand in hand with publishers to understand those challenges, and over the past year has supported Asian newsrooms and publishers through the Google News Initiative (GNI).

Asia-Pacific GNI Innovation Challenge has been created to help build a stronger future for journalism in Asia-Pacific, which will fund projects that inject new ideas into the news industry.

Proposals for projects aimed at increasing revenue from readers are invited, including subscriptions, membership programs, contributions and new digital products and services. A panel of Googlers and other tech industry executives will review the submissions and fund selected projects up to US$ 300,000 and finance up to 70% of the total project cost.

The funding will be reviewed against several criteria, including a sharing component – for example by publishing any findings or holding a seminar – so grantees can pass their knowledge onto others in the industry.

Given the pace of change in the news industry, innovation has never been more important. The company is assuring that all organizations, large and small, in the Asia-Pacific news ecosystem have the opportunity to suggest new ideas around this critically important topic. Applications will open on 28 November 2018, and the deadline for submission is 9 January 2019.

The Covid-19 pandemic led to the country-wide lockdown on 25 March 2020. It will be two years tomorrow as I write this. What have we learned in this time? Maybe the meaning of resilience since small companies like us have had to rely on our resources and the forbearance of our employees as we have struggled to produce our trade platforms.

The print and packaging industries have been fortunate, although the commercial printing industry is still to recover. We have learned more about the digital transformation that affects commercial printing and packaging. Ultimately digital will help print grow in a country where we are still far behind in our paper and print consumption and where digital is a leapfrog technology that will only increase the demand for print in the foreseeable future.

Web analytics show that we now have readership in North America and Europe amongst the 90 countries where our five platforms reach. Our traffic which more than doubled in 2020, has at times gone up by another 50% in 2021. And advertising which had fallen to pieces in 2020 and 2021, has started its return since January 2022.

As the economy approaches real growth with unevenness and shortages a given, we are looking forward to the PrintPack India exhibition in Greater Noida. We are again appointed to produce the Show Daily on all five days of the show from 26 to 30 May 2022.

It is the right time to support our high-impact reporting and authoritative and technical information with some of the best correspondents in the industry. Readers can power Indian Printer and Publisher’s balanced industry journalism and help sustain us by subscribing.

– Naresh Khanna

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