JournalismAI Academy for Small Newsrooms

A training programme to help small newsrooms leverage the power of artificial intelligence

The JournalismAI Academy for Small Newsrooms is a FREE online programme that offers a deep dive into the potential of artificial intelligence to journalists and media professionals from small newsrooms. 

It is designed by the JournalismAI team at the London School of Economics and Political Science (LSE) and powered by the Google News Initiative.

Applications are now CLOSED for the EMEA and APAC cohorts. Applications will open soon for the Americas cohort.

The Academy has been a core programme of the JournalismAI initiative since 2021, training 60 newsroom professionals from across the globe.

Thanks to the experience of the past two years and the exceptional feedback we received from participants, we are now reopening the Academy for two cohorts: 

  • Europe, Middle East and Africa (EMEA)
  • Asia-Pacific (APAC)

Later this year, we will open applications for the Americas as well.

The 8-week programme will start in June 2023. It is designed for journalists and media professionals from small news organisations.

In line with JournalismAI's mission to make the potential of AI more accessible for news organisations worldwide, the Academy aims to support small newsrooms that want to learn how AI can be used to enhance their journalism.

The programme combines a series of masterclasses given by experts working at the intersection of journalism and artificial intelligence with opportunities for discussion among participants. In addition to that, participants will be guided through the development of resources that can support their organisations’ AI-adoption journey during and after the programme.

The Academy is FREE for selected participants, thanks to the support of the Google News Initiative, which has been powering JournalismAI since 2019.

Please refer to the FAQs below for additional details on the structure of the programme, eligibility criteria, and how to apply. 

 ❝ The JournalismAI Academy for Small Newsrooms is a must for anyone looking to break barriers and to have impact, whatever their professional designation. I came away feeling truly empowered and turbocharged about my ability to make a difference, both in my organisation and in the wider fact-checking and media ecosystem. ❞ 

— Lee Mwiti, Editor, Africa Check —

❝ The JournalismAI Academy for Small Newsrooms is the right learning experience for understanding the importance of artificial intelligence in journalism, the multiple ways it is already in use, and the different reasons for which one should consider adopting it, while also highlighting the limitations and bottlenecks in implementing the same, especially in small newsrooms. ❞ 

— Saketh Ayyagari, Head of Growth & Marketing, The Bridge —


1. What kind of candidates are you looking for?

The Academy is designed for journalists and media professionals working in small newsrooms (fewer than 50 employees for EMEA and fewer than 100 employees for APAC).

Fluency in English is required to take part in the Academy. 

In 2023, we are selecting 20 participants from Europe, Middle East and Africa (from GMT-1 to GMT+4) and 20 participants from the Asia-Pacific region (from GMT+5 to GMT+12). 

The ideal candidate already has a basic understanding of the potential of artificial intelligence and machine learning, and works in a news organisation that has started exploring how to use these new technologies. 

Candidates with different newsroom titles will be considered but, in the selection process, priority will be given to candidates that demonstrate the ability to influence the strategic adoption of AI in their news organisation to tackle journalistic challenges. 

No coding skills are required to attend the Academy, nor are there any other technical requirements, other than a stable WiFi connection to participate in the live activities. We encourage journalists and media professionals from all backgrounds to apply.

The Academy is not for freelancers – you need to be part of a newsroom to benefit from the programme. The Academy is not for journalists based outside the EMEA and APAC regions. Finally, the Academy is not for journalists who are not fluent in English. 

2. How do I apply to join the Academy?

You can submit your application via this link

The extended deadline to apply for the JournalismAI Academy for Small Newsrooms is Wednesday, 3 May 2023, at 11:59 PM GMT.

3. How does the programme work?

The Academy is an 8-week fully-virtual programme, with six core modules, one introduction week, and one wrap-up week. Each module has a different focus:

MODULE #1 → What is AI and how is it used in journalism?

In this module, we will explore key concepts and definitions related to artificial intelligence, including machine learning, neural networks, and natural language processing/generation (NLP/NLG). Participants will gain a foundational understanding of AI and its applications in journalism.


In this module, we will focus on exploring available AI tools and how to implement them in the journalistic process. We will examine case studies of successful AI implementations in journalism, and provide guidance on selecting and integrating AI tools into newsrooms.


In this module, we will focus on the importance of data and technology in AI implementation. We will discuss the types of data needed for AI processes and the tech infrastructure required to support them. Participants will also learn about data privacy and security concerns that must be addressed when implementing AI in journalism.


In this module, we will examine the skills and cultural changes required for journalists and news organisations to effectively leverage the power of AI. We will discuss the importance of fostering an AI-literate culture within newsrooms, and explore strategies for identifying and developing the necessary skills among journalists and editorial staff.


In this module, we will identify the risks and concerns associated with AI in journalism, such as bias, accountability, and transparency. Participants will learn about ethical considerations when using AI, and explore strategies for mitigating the potential harms of AI in journalism.


In this module, we will focus on ideation, exploring the different possibilities and scenarios where AI can be applied to journalism. Through brainstorming sessions and group exercises, participants will develop new ideas for AI tools that can enhance and support their journalistic work.

In addition to the main programme we will also offer an extra workshop for those who are interested.


This workshop will be held a few weeks after the completion of the Academy to give participants time to ideate and develop their AI projects. During this workshop, participants will receive guidance and support from experts to help them bring their AI projects to life.

4. When will the Academy take place?

The Academy will take place from 14 June to 3 August 2023. The two cohorts (EMEA and APAC) will run in parallel. 

The programme includes two sessions per week. Participants are expected to dedicate 4 hours per week to the programme, across the 8 weeks:

  • Live presentations on Wednesday (90 minutes)
  • Live workshops on Thursday (90 minutes)
  • Assignment to complete individually before the following meeting (~60 minutes)

5. What commitment do you ask from participants?

First and foremost, we ask participants to embrace the interactive and participatory nature of the Academy. The programme provides multiple opportunities to connect with experts as well as to develop a regional network of like-minded news innovators. 

If selected, you must commit to fully participate in the online sessions, to share your expertise with the other participants, and to approach the experience with enthusiasm, curiosity, and respect for your fellow participants. Participation in all the activities outlined above is mandatory.

In the application process, we ask for a letter of commitment from the management of the organisation that a candidate will represent at the Academy. If selected, you will be asked to sign a letter of personal commitment, in which you commit to attending all sessions and actively participate in all course activities.

6. Who are the instructors?

The Academy is coordinated by the JournalismAI team. Each module will be led by experts in the field of journalism and AI.  The complete list of instructors will be announced soon, so stay tuned and sign up for our newsletter to find out the full line-up of this year's Academy!

7. What will I get out of it?

Participants will leave the Academy with a practical understanding of the opportunities and challenges offered by AI technologies, examples of successful implementation, and the tools to set up an action plan to guide the development of AI projects in their news organisations.

Through engaging presentations and interactive workshops, the programme aims to empower participant’s professional development and enable their organisations to access AI adoption and implementation. 

By the end of the programme participants will have:

  • Improved their AI literacy and demystified AI buzzwords
  • Gained new perspectives from a multicultural, interdisciplinary environment
  • Improved understanding of the potential offered to journalism by AI technologies
  • Learned new methods and skills to experiment and prototype new ideas
  • Developed their thinking about the role of technology in journalism
  • Learned about a set of AI-powered tools available for news organisations
  • Developed a regional network of like-minded news innovators

8. Are there any costs for participation?

Thanks to the support of the Google News Initiative, the programme is entirely free for selected participants.

9. Where can I find out more about JournalismAI?

Glad you asked! JournalismAI is a collaboration between Polis – the journalism think-tank at the London School of Economics and Political Science – and the Google News Initiative. Our mission is to empower news organisations to use artificial intelligence responsibly. 

Find out more about our activities on our website, and sign up for our newsletter.

10. How can I get in touch if I have any questions?

If you have any questions about the JournalismAI Academy for Small Newsrooms, please contact our Academy Lead, Sabrina Argoub, at





The JournalismAI Academy for Small Newsrooms is organised by the JournalismAI team at Polis – the journalism think-tank at the London School of Economics and Political Science – and it's supported by the Google News Initiative.