The Fund for Investigative Journalism

Supporting investigative reporting projects around the world

  • Next Application Deadline

    Monday, May 5, 2014 - 5pm Eastern
  • How FIJ Helped to Uncover the My Lai Massacre

    Seymour HershClick here to hear veteran investigative reporter Seymour Hersh tell how – with financial support from the Fund for Investigative Journalism – he learned about the massacre of civilians in Vietnam, how he tracked down Lt. William Calley and, in so doing, changed the world’s perception of American intervention in Southeast Asia. It demonstrates how small grants from our fund have enabled talented journalists to produce big, important stories, changing the course of history.

    Call for Investigative Grant Proposals

    February 28th, 2014


    The Fund for Investigative Journalism (FIJ) is calling for applications for grants to support independent investigative reporting. Grants cover out-of-pocket expenses such as travel, document production and equipment rental. Small stipends may be considered as a part of the grant. The typical grant is $5,000.

    The deadline for applications is Monday, May 5, at 5pm Eastern time.

    The Board of Directors looks for stories that break new ground and expose wrongdoing – such as corruption, malfeasance, or misuse of power - in the public and private sectors.

    Visit the FIJ website for detailed instructions and on-line application form: FIJ welcomes calls and emails with questions about the application process. Email: email hidden; JavaScript is required. Phone: 202-662-7564.

    Surprising Findings About Babies Born in Prison

    February 24th, 2014


    From Audrey Quinn, for Life of the Law, the story of mothers who give birth in prison.

    An excerpt: A Department of Corrections study found having a baby in a prison nursery makes a woman twice as likely to stay out of prison later. Byrne [Mary Byrne, a professor at Columbia University School of Nursing] decided to conduct her own research, following sixty of the babies from the Bedford prison nursery until the age of eight. She compared their development to kids in the general population. “The children overall did very well,” Byrne concludes… Byrne found that 70 percent of the babies she studied managed to form secure attachment with their moms – more than in the outside world. Despite these findings, prison nurseries are extremely rare.


    Private Violence Documentary

    February 24th, 2014

    Private-Violence-Private-Violence-Private-Violence-jpgThe documentary “Private Violence,” directed by Cynthia Hill, has debuted at the 2014 Sundance Film Festival. The film tells the story of two women, a domestic violence advocate who was victimized herself years ago, and a young mother who, with the advocate’s help, fought in court to keep her abusive ex-husband in prison. The documentary will air on HBO this fall. For more information and to track screenings and air dates, visit the Private Violence website and its Facebook page.

    Photo courtesy of: Rex Miller.

    The Dark Corner of an Elite High School

    February 21st, 2014

    Stuy auditoriumFrom Rong Xiaoqing, for Sing Tao Daily, translated into English for Voices of NY, a deeply reported story of the mental health consequences for some American students at one highly competitive high school in New York City.

    An excerpt: “For many academically competitive students, Stuyvesant is the ultimate goal. But once you get in, everyone is so competitive. You have to stay at the top in order to get into Ivy Leagues. But not all students can stay at the top. Some of them will show symptoms of depression, adjustment disorder, hopelessness and withdrawing,” said Peter Yee, Deputy Director of Hamilton Madison House. Yee said the youth mental health program of his organization every year serves a few students from Stuyvesant (which, like the organization, is also in Downtown Manhattan). He says he gets more Stuyvesant students than from any other school, though he won’t give specific numbers.

    Photo courtesy of: Rong Xiaoqing


    Underaged Workers in US Tobacco Fields

    February 21st, 2014

    RoccoFrom Rocco Rorandelli for CNN World, the story of teens working in American tobacco fields.

    An excerpt:

    In many states, children as young as 12 can legally work on a farm as long as it’s after school and they have their parents’ permission.

    “It doesn’t specify whether the farm is producing corn or tobacco, but … the kid who works in a farm that produces corn is exposed to much less than a kid working a farm that is producing tobacco. And this is important to know,” Rorandelli said. “There is no differentiation, but there should be.”

    Lobbying in Florida’s Shadows

    February 10th, 2014

    bulldog logo smallThe Miami Herald has picked up’s investigation of lobbyists operating in the shadows of Florida government. The in-depth report found broad loopholes in otherwise tough requirements for lobbyist disclosure and registration in Florida.

    (An excerpt):  .. Florida’s independent special districts are a separate class of government — a hodgepodge of obscure taxing and other authorities that, with few exceptions, offer the public no information about lobbyists or what they’re up to at their agencies. , supported by a grant from the Washington-based  Fund for Investigative Journalism, spent months documenting that sweeping lack of government accountability, a free ride enjoyed by lobbyists at independent special districts around Florida with the power to tax, assess fees and/or sell low-interest bonds to finance government spending.

    The story is already generating reaction in the Florida Senate, as reported by




    Florida Lobbyists Operate in the Shadows

    January 16th, 2014

    bulldog logo smallFrom Florida, the state known for its “Sunshine” Freedom of Information laws, an investigation of special governmental districts that allow lobbyists to influence decisions, without any public disclosure. Dan Christensen of reports there are hundreds of districts responsible for billions of dollars in government spending each year that allow lobbyists to operate in the shadows. The districts have control over airports, public hospitals, water management, and other specialized functions. An excerpt: “There are 992 active independent special districts, according to the Florida Department of Economic Opportunity’s special districts database. They outnumber Florida’s counties, cities, towns and villages better than two to one yet operate largely in the shadows of their better-known municipal counterparts.”

    Reaction: Boston Halts License Plate Scanning

    December 29th, 2013

    traffic lightsFrom Shawn Musgrave for the Boston Globe, a follow-up story to his investigation of privacy concerns over police department scanning of license plates. After the Police Department released private information by mistake, it decided to suspend the program, indefinitely.

    Grant Proposal Deadline: Monday February 10, 2014

    December 27th, 2013

    Washington – The next deadline for grant applications to the Fund for Investigative Journalism has been set for Monday, February 10, 2014, at 5pm Eastern time.

    For application instructions, visit the Fund’s website,; click on Apply for a Grant.

    For further information about the grant application process, call Sandy Bergo, 202-662-7564, or send an email to email hidden; JavaScript is required.


    Eternal Harvest

    December 26th, 2013

    RedfernFrom Karen Coates and Jerry Redfern, a book about the bombs the US dropped in Laos, still exploding many years later. The book, Eternal Harvest, published by ThingsAsian Press, is the result of seven years of work. Coates and Redfern traveled through Laos, locating people, taking their photos, and listening to their stories. They dedicate their book to the more than 50,000 Laotians who have been injured or killed by American bombs since bombing began in 1964, a toll that continues to rise today.