The South Tyrol Marketing Company (SMG) and the Südtiroler Sparkasse Foundation shine a spotlight on young journalists and photographers every year through the South Tyrol Media Award. The award goes to those who best flesh out and document seemingly non-dramatic material in a colourful and diverse way, exhibiting talent, powers of observation, and a "flair for the untold" (Cordt Schnibben, reporter for Der Spiegel magazine). The overriding theme of the competition: South Tyrol. Applicants may choose from several options: studies of the region, portraits, historical reportage, and everyday life.

The competition is exclusively for journalists from Germany, Austria and Switzerland: their neutrality as “non-South Tyroleans” allows them to approach our region from a somewhat different vantage point. The form of this reportage has been agreed upon as well, which allows for a great deal of journalistic freedom—more so than any other type of text. Because the reportage is fact-driven yet based on personal experience and should be packaged in aesthetically pleasing language, it demands an ability to truly empathise in addition to powerful skills of comprehension and analysis.

Reporters should convey experience as if they were cameras that think—even if they can never replace the visual sensory impressions that pictorial documentation delivers.
The South Tyrol Media Award thus includes a simultaneous competition for young photographers, who accompany the journalists on their research trips and record the stories in images. We have been able to put together a qualified jury of experts, which decides upon the winner every year based on specific criteria, for the young journalists award as well as for that of the young photographers. Since reports only have a future if they are associated with supplementary services such as audio or video files, SMG and the Südtiroler Sparkasse Foundation have engaged the celebrated German actor Christian Brückner, who is a voice actor, narrator and interpreter of audio books, to read the winning reports. Is this way, the texts are brought to life and rendered a true listening pleasure.

Karl Franz Pichler
South Tyrolean Sparkasse Foundation President

South Tyrol Media Award