The Nation Institute

There are presently no open calls for submissions.


The Ida B. Wells Fellowship

Named after the pioneering African-American investigative reporter, the Ida B. Wells Fellowship is designed to promote diversity in journalism by helping to create a pipeline of investigative reporters of color who bring diverse backgrounds, experiences and interests, to their work. Winners are chosen by an annual competition. 

The Ida B. Wells Fellowship provides four reporters each year with a $10,000 stipend and access to an Investigative Fund editor who will advise them throughout the process of producing their first substantial work of investigative reporting. The one-year fellowship also covers travel and other reporting costs associated with the project and the costs associated with attending the Investigative Reporters and Editors conference in June. Each fellow will also enjoy access to research resources, legal counsel, professional mentoring, and assistance with story placement and publicity. The fellowship is a one-time educational opportunity and is non-renewable.

Journalists of color are strongly encouraged to apply, as are other reporters who believe their presence would contribute substantially to diversifying the field of investigative reporting. The fellowship is open to entry-level or mid-career journalists. Recent journalism school graduates, journalism students or journalism interns are eligible to apply, as are reporters in other fields seeking to pivot to investigative reporting. Applicants may be freelance journalists or journalists currently employed by a media outlet. 

The deadline for the 2017 application is March 1.

On January 31, at 12 noon Eastern time, the Investigative Fund will hold a Google Hangout to answer questions about applying. To participate in the hangout, visit this URL to request access to the meeting and use the same URL to attend the Hangout at the appointed time. 

If you would like to receive updates about fellowship deadlines and winner selection, please sign up here. 

We are looking for reporters:

•       who have great story ideas, a passion for holding the powerful accountable, and an appetite for digging.

•       with the demonstrated ability to produce a narrative feature for print or broadcast.

•       who would relish the opportunity to closely collaborate with editors.

•       with the persistence, attentiveness to detail, and organizational skills to complete a major project within a set timeframe. 

Winners will be notified in May and announced in June. Fellows are required to publish or air their projects within one year of the start of the fellowship.  Each project produced during the fellowship must appear in a U.S. media outlet.

About The Investigative Fund: The Investigative Fund incubates and supports important investigative stories with the potential for social impact, which are published in a wide variety of print, broadcast, and online outlets. The Investigative Fund does this by providing reporters with editorial advice, institutional support, and resources to cover the research costs associated with investigative journalism. Investigative Fund projects have won some of journalism’s top awards, including the Emmy, the Polk, the National Magazine Award, the Scripps Howard Award, the IRE Medal, and the Hillman Prize.

About The Nation Institute: A nonprofit media center, The Nation Institute is dedicated to strengthening the independent press and advancing social justice and civil rights. Its programs include The Investigative Fund; a bestselling book publishing imprint, Nation Books; the syndicated website TomDispatch; the Victor S. Navasky Internship Program at The Nation magazine; and Journalism Fellowships that support over 25 reporters every year.

TIPS: Before applying, we encourage you to check out investigations we have produced in the past at theinvestigativefund.org and also to do a thorough search for previous reporting related to your story idea. Please be clear about how your project has the potential to uncover or expose something new and have real world impact. If you have more questions, please download our FAQ at http://goo.gl/am3oz6, or email Kelly Virella at idabwells[at]nationinstitute.org.

The Victor S. Navasky Internship Program

For more than three decades The Nation Institute, in conjunction with The Nation magazine, has provided an internship program for early-career journalists interested in journalism and publishing.

The Nation Institute, a nonprofit media center, has a dynamic range of programs, including a bestselling book publishing imprint, Nation Books; an award-winning Investigative Fund which supports investigative journalism; Journalism Fellowships that support established and emerging reporters; the website TomDispatch; prize programs to support whistleblowing, journalism, and social justice; and this internship program with The Nation magazine.

The Nation is America's oldest continuously published weekly magazine and the most widely read journal of opinion. Founded by antislavery abolitionists in 1865, The Nation is a journal of politics, culture, books, and the arts. Historic contributors include W.E.B. Du Bois, Willa Cather, James Agee, Hannah Arendt, James Baldwin, Gore Vidal, Sylvia Plath, Martin Luther King Jr., Hunter S. Thompson, Lillian Hellman, Kurt Vonnegut, Edward Said, John Leonard, and Molly Ivins. The Nation's contemporary writers include Naomi Klein, John Nichols, Eric Foner, Patricia Williams, Katha Pollitt, Marilynne Robinson, William Deresiewicz, Eric Alterman, Walter Mosley, Ralph Nader, Melissa Harris-Perry, Christopher Hayes, Bill McKibben, Joan Walsh, Mychal Denzel Smith, Dave Zirin, Katrina vanden Heuvel, and Calvin Trillin.

Our internship program offers two internship sessions a year, with the following positions available during each session:

Editorial Internships at The Nation:

Editorial interns experience a comprehensive immersion into The Nation and TheNation.com’s editorial processes. These interns' primary responsibilities include fact-checking for the magazine and website, providing research support to Nation writers and editors, and assisting bloggers on TheNation.com. Interns are not expected to arrive with fact-checking or digital media experience and will be extensively trained in those areas, though a familiarity with The Nation and the range of issues we cover is essential. These interns are based in the magazine's New York City offices.

Editorial Internship at the Investigative Fund:

The Don and Doris Shaffer Intern is dedicated to working with the Nation Institute's Investigative Fund, assisting in the creation and distribution of long-form investigative pieces that appear in a wide variety of media outlets. This intern will conduct research for reporters and editors, do in-depth fact-checking, and assist with push-out on stories. This intern also occasionally works on Institute-related projects and is based at the Institute’s New York City offices.

All interns participate in educational seminars with journalists, academics, and activists who come by our offices to speak to interns about their work. Recent guests have included Pulitzer Prize-winning historian Eric Foner, author and critic Vivian Gornick, Nation Institute fellow Sharif Abdel Kouddous, senior editor of The Atlantic Ta-Nehisi Coates, and New Yorker staff writer Rachel Aviv. Interns are encouraged to suggest people they would like to come in and speak with the group.

The internship is full-time, five days per week.

Compensation and Credit: Interns are paid $15 per hour, $525 per week. Whenever possible, The Nation Institute will assist interns in arranging for academic or work-study credit.

Application Procedure: Applicants must submit the following:

  • A cover letter that explains why you want to work for The Nation. Please mention Nation writers you follow and/or Nation pieces you’ve enjoyed. If you are applying for the Don and Doris Shaffer internship position, please explain your interest in working with the Investigative Fund and mention some IFund stories you found interesting. If you are applying for both positions, please address both.
  • A resume.
  • Two letters of recommendation with contact information for the referees included. Letters may be emailed directly by recommenders to naomi@nationinstitute.org, or may be uploaded with the rest of your application materials.
  • Answers to the application questions.

Applications for the winter/spring 2018 session are now closed.

Incomplete applications will not be considered. Applications submitted through postal mail or email will not be considered. All application materials become the property of The Nation Institute. Please address all queries to naomi@nationinstitute.org. No phone calls, please.

This internship is funded in part by the generous support of the Grover family, in honor of Harriet and Perry Grover.

Deadlines and Duration of Program

Winter/Spring 2018:

Application deadline: October 9, 2017
Notification deadline: November 17, 2017
Program duration: January 2 - June 29, 2018

Summer/Fall 2018:

Application deadline: April 1, 2018
Notification deadline: May 4, 2018
Program duration: June 26 - December 21, 2018

The Nation Institute is an equal-opportunity employer.