The start-up contest at the DW Global Media Forum 2021 | DW Global Media Forum | DW | 26.07.2021
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The start-up contest at the DW Global Media Forum 2021

The start-up contest @GMF presented by DW welcomed media start-ups from around the globe to pitch their ideas and business models. The event was part of this year's Global Media Forum.

The start-up contest supports outstanding ideas in the news and media industry

The start-up contest supports outstanding ideas in the news and media industry

The Global Media Forum is hosted by Deutsche Welle and its partners each year. The annual media conference offers a unique opportunity to its international participants to network and strengthen relationships with inspiring representatives from a variety of interdisciplinary fields such as digital media, politics, culture, business, development and society.

Startups and talent in media technology and innovation

As part of the Global Media Forum 2021, Deutsche Wellewelcomedstart-ups from around the world to participate in the start-up contest @GMF. The focus was on visionaries who could relate to the GMF 2021 theme of "Disruption and Innovation."

From the point of technology, Deutsche Welle actively sought innovative approaches that help support the work of the journalists in the newsroom as well as technologies that help to ensure freedom of speech and security on the internet. The following areas were highlighted as of particular interest: 

  • News intelligence - How can smart tools support work in the newsroom?
  • Diversity - How can AI perhaps help to increase awareness on #bias und #diversity? 
  • Internet censorship - How can we detect censorship and online shutdowns and create better mechanisms and safeguards to ensure freedom of speech?
  • Mission Impossible? - How can we ensure correct and proper political communication in an age of disruption? 
  • Propaganda and the infodemic - How can media companies fight misinformation and disinformation, and thus retain trust?

Our winners from Tunisia and Denmark

Congratulations to iCompass from Tunisia and Klipworks from Denmark, the winners of the 2021 media start-up contest at the DW Global Media Forum!

iCompass is a start-up specializing in Artificial Intelligence and Natural Language Processing. The team is composed of academics and engineers who focus on information technology, mathematics and linguistics. Their Arabic and African languages text analysis tools help companies in the region and beyond. 

Klipworks is a start-up that enables broadcast journalists to easily collect, manage and use video content from their audience. By sharing a simple link with the audience, they are encouraged to record and submit a video. Minutes later, the video is available for the journalist, ready to edit and publish on air. 

Read more: Leading the way: Tunisian and Danish start-ups win GMF contest  

The 2021 framework

This year, the start-up contest @GMF took place in a hybrid setting. The majority of the event was produced at the DW broadcasting center in Bonn, Germany on June 14 and 15 and streamed live on digital platforms.

After the initial application phase with 90 contestants from all continents, Deutsche Welle invited the most promising start-ups to take part in our incubation program. The Incubation Days includedthree days of professional training and preparation for the final pitch in the run-up to the DW Global Media Forum. At the end of this period, the remaining 10 competing start-ups pitched their projects, and our high-level jury of international experts selected four start-ups that entered the pitch final. 

The finalists of the start-up contest @GMF 2021 then presented theirpitches live on our digital platforms as part of the official Global Media Forum program. The winners wereannounced on June 15. They will enjoy global media coverage by DW media as part of their prize. In addition, the winning start-ups will also receive professional media training offered by Deutsche Welle Akademie. 

A conference for all

All start-ups – regardless of how far they made it in the race to the top – were also welcome to participate as delegates at the DW Global Media Forum itself, where pertinent issues relating to media, technology, society, politics, culture and other areas were discussed in an interdisciplinary setting, featuring a wide array of outstanding speakers and panelists. Thank you to all our inspiring start-up contest applications and congratulations to iCompass and Klipworks!

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