The Pulitzer Center, a nonprofit organization that supports independent global journalism, is now accepting applications for a new reporting initiative focused on oceans and fisheries. 

We are seeking ambitious reporting proposals from freelance and staff journalists from around the world who wish to report on vital ocean and fisheries issues and are in need of support for their reporting projects.  

Illegal, unreported, and unregulated fishing, plus changes to our climate and our oceans, are having profound effects on the natural resources that more than three billion people depend on for food, nutrition, and their livelihoods. What’s more, illegal fishing is often linked with other crimes such as human trafficking, bribery, corruption, and tax evasion. These growing pressures on oceans and fisheries pose significant challenges to the long-term health and sustainability of fishers, coastal communities, the seafood industry, and countries around the world.


We believe journalists can play a crucial role in raising awareness about the complex web of challenges facing oceans and fisheries. We also know that reporting on these issues can be extremely challenging, given that ocean research, illegal trawling, fishing fleet labor abuses, and other fisheries-related issues often occur on the high seas, far from public view. 

This new initiative seeks to support enterprising journalists with ambitious reporting projects that will yield high-quality, in-depth journalism that exposes long-running fisheries problems and enables key stakeholders and a well-informed public to find solutions that lead to more legal and sustainably caught fish, supply chains free of forced labor, greater food security, and thriving coastal communities. Through our support, we intend to develop a global cohort of journalists dedicated to surfacing vital underreported oceans and fisheries stories.  

Over the past couple of years, the Pulitzer Center has invested in a number of in-depth, hard-hitting reporting projects documenting climate change, environmental degradation, crime, and human conflict playing out across the world’s oceans, while at the same time chronicling solutions and the resiliency of communities facing these threats. Some of the strongest examples of Pulitzer Center-supported ocean reporting from the past several years include:


We welcome story ideas on illegal, unreported, and unregulated fishing, including fisheries subsidies, overfishing and the depletion of fish stocks, impacts on small-scale fishers and livelihoods in coastal communities, as well as solutions-oriented stories. We also welcome stories on ocean health and climate effects, pollution, and other ocean issues. Reporting related to fisheries and large inland waters, such as lakes and rivers also welcome. We are also interested in receiving proposals for collaborative reporting projects by teams of reporters working on oceans and fisheries issues.

If you are looking for a terrific resource for tips on covering fisheries stories, we suggest Earth Journalism Networks' A Journalist's Guide to Reporting on Illegal, Unreported and Unregulated (IUU) Fishing.

This opportunity is open and we are accepting applications. Please review our grant application guidelines and apply today. If you have specific questions about applying please contact

Our oceans, fisheries, and coastlines journalism is supported by the Walton Family Fund, The Norwegian Agency for Development Cooperation (Norad), and the Howard Hughes Department of Science Education.