Apr 12, 2012

How to apply for the MADE: UK Weekend for media startups and get into the MADE: Hothouse

MADE is looking for creative, motivated communicators who want to start or grow digital news enterprises for civic, educational or commercial purposes.

In June, we kick off with a 48-hour MADE: UK Weekend for media startups for up to 30 news entrepreneurs from anywhere in Europe with creative flair, energy and ability coupled with a willingness to learn. Successful applicants will work with a team of mentors including the cream of digital talent from ScraperWiki, Talk About Local and UCLan’s School of Journalism, Media and Communication and Northern Lights’ business support team.

The MADE: UK Startup Weekend will run from 5pm on Friday, 15 June to 5pm on Sunday, 17 June in the Sandbox at the Media Factory, UCLan’s creative and digital industries centre in Preston.  

(The MADE: Turkey Weekend for media startups is being planned for the Autumn in Istanbul. If you’d like to be kept in the loop, please add your contact details here)

Following the Startup Weekend, up to five projects will be invited to join the the MADE Hothouse, a 12-week mentoring and support programme that will give you one-to-one access to expertise to help you develop and grow your news enterprise. Those in the MADE Hothouse will get to work directly with developers from ScraperWiki, who will help you create bespoke solutions for your online news and information venture, and will get additional business development training and coaching from industry professionals and UCLan staff. You’ll also get to connect and share with other innovators in the MADE Hothouses in the UK and Turkey.

Sounds good. But how do I know I qualify?

MADE is for you if you’re keen on making and sharing “factual content in the public interest” (the definition of news that MADE initiator François Nel uses). That could a news and information project about a geographic community, such as Ventnor Blog , or specific niche content theme, such as How-Do, or issue, such as the data-driven Ethical Consumer cooperative. Whether your motivation is civic, educational or commercial (or all three), MADE wants to help your start-up stay up. So, whether you’re a professionally trained journalist or just an enthusiast. Young or old. Experienced in business or a novice. If you’re either thinking about starting up a digital news site or your project has been going for less than three years and you'd like to find ways to take it to the next level, we’d like to hear from you.

 I’m excited. How do I apply?

We want you to send a copy of your CV along with a short statement about why you as a news innovator think a new set of skills and connections will help your enterprise.(400 words maximum). Deadline for Applications is Friday, 18 May at 5pm. Your application will be considered by a panel of industry professionals and a representative from UCLan, who will compile a shortlist of candidates.

 What happens next?

If you make it to the shortlist you will be notified via email no later than 28 May and may be invited to participate in an interview. For the interview you’ll be asked to discuss how you intend to make use of the opportunity offered by MADE. This will be followed by questions from the panel.

 Then what?

You’ll be told whether or not you have a place on the MADE Startup Weekend by 31 May 2012.

 What else do I need to know about the process?

Applicants must be available to attend every day of the MADE Startup Weekend. Anyone who does not attend the weekend will not be eligible for one of the 12 week mentoring opportunities in the MADE Hothouse. There is no charge for the MADE Startup Weekend, but MADE does not cover the cost of travel to and from the workshop. A limited number of accommodation and subsistence scholarships are available. Please contact the project leader François Nel at FPNel@uclan.ac.uk for more details.  

Where do I send my completed CV and short statement?

You can email your CV and short statement to: FPNel@uclan.ac.uk. Please put the words ‘#uclanMADE Application’ in the subject line of your email.

Anything else?

Yes, plenty. The MADE team is hard at work researching news entrepreneurship and we’ll be sharing what we find on our blog and, eventually, in MADE Insight reports. We’ve also got more networking events, hangouts and workshops - including a MADE DJ Camp (yes, that’ll be a follow on Data Journalism Camp from the booked-out DJCamp2011) - in the works for the Autumn, so keep following @uclanMADE  or, better still, join sign up to get MADE Updates and MADE GoogleGroup.

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