Difference Day Honorary Title 2017


The Global Investigative Journalism Network (GIJN) is an international association of nonprofit organizations that support, promote, and produce investigative journalism. GIJN holds conferences, conducts trainings, provides resources and consulting, and encourages the creation of similar nonprofit groups. It was founded in 2003 when more than 300 journalists from around the world gathered for the second Global Investigative Journalism Conference in Copenhagen. Since then it has grown to 145 member organizations in 62 countries.

Margo Smit
copyright: NOS/Stefan Heijdendael

Margo Smit is independent, self-employed investigative TV-documentary filmmaker and (part time) ombudsman at NOS, Dutch public broadcaster. Until summer 2015, she was director of the Dutch-Flemish Association of Investigative Journalists VVOJ. Smit is a member of the International Consortium of Investigative Journalists ICIJ and covered their #LuxLeaks investigation on tax evasion through Luxemburg for Dutch public TV. Smit is vice-chair of the Global Investigative Journalism Network.
Margo Smit teaches (investigative) journalism on TV, with a specialisation on visualisation of (investigative) reporting, at University Groningen and various journalism schools in the Netherlands and Flanders.

Smit studied journalism in the United States. In 1989 she began working as a news and features reporter for a Dutch commercial TV station and later as their political correspondent.  In 1997, she transferred to KRO Reporter, an investigative television documentary series on Dutch public TV, where she worked till 2009. Smit investigated, for example, the Dutch monarchy, nuclear safety and proliferation, accounting transparency at multinationals, Islam, honorary killings and the banking industry.  She was co-producer of aKRO Profiel documentary on controversial politician Ayaan Hirsi Ali nominated for the Prix Europa in 2005. She was a juror for the Daniel Pearl Award and the Global Shining Light Award for investigative journalism, and the M.J. Brusseprijs for non-fiction in the Dutch language.

Evens Foundation: The Prize for European Journalism 2017

The Evens Foundation is awarding the Prize for European Journalism to two journalists: Tom Nuttall of  The Economist and Christoph Zotter of Profil Magazine. Nuttal writes on European politics and economics in The Economist’s ‘Charlemagne Column’. He is a much sought-after commentator on television and radio.  Christoph Zotter works on the foreign affairs desk of the Austrian news magazine Profil. He wants to get readers following complex European issues more closely.


imec Press for More Award 2017

Poool.fr is the first to receive this award. This smart paywall is a handy tool in helping news sites provide a better service. Surfing behaviour is analysed to enable a news site to offer articles likely to interest the individual reader. In this way, the sites reach out to the public. The jury likes the way this innovative start up links journalism and access to information. The paywall also gives the news sites the possibility to pursue their work in a sustainable manner and at the same time keep the door open to new users.


Difference Day Honorary Title 2016

Zineb El Rhazoui (1982) is from a family of mixed background: her father is Moroccan, her mother French. Since her early adolescence she has questioned the subordinate role of women in Islam. She started her career as a journalist in Morocco, where she set up several pro-democratic, secular organisations. She was arrested on several occasions and ultimately deposed from the country. She left for Paris where she became the spokeswoman for the feminist organisation Ni Putes, ni Soumises. In 2011, following the Arab Spring, she was recruited by the magazine Charlie Hebdo. She collaborated on projects including the articles on the prophet Mohammed, for which she has received death threats from ISIS. Zineb escaped the attack on the editors of Charlie Hebdo on 7 January 2015. Since that time her life has been dominated by measures to secure her safety and security.

Difference Day Honorary Title 2016

Djemila Benhabib was born in Ukraine in 1972 and grew up in Algeria. Having a Greek Cypriot mother she became aware at a young age of the inequality of women in that society. In 1994, following an Islamic death sentence, her family sought refuge in France. Three years later Djemila travelled to Quebec alone, where she launched her career with Ma vie à contre-Coran, an essay which won her the Ecrivains francophones d’Amérique prize in 2009. Following Les soldats d’Allah à l’assaut de l’Occident, which was published in 2012, Charb (at that time director of Charlie Hebdo), awarded Djemila the Prix international de la laïcité. In 2013 she received the Prix humaniste du Quebec for L’automne des femmes arabes. Après Charlie was published in January 2016. In it she writes that the fall of the great twentieth century ideologies has allowed religion to return to our society. This poses a threat to freedom of thought and freedom of expression, as well as the rights of women, education, etc. Her commitment to the cause has frequently left her a victim of physical threats, intimidation and legal action by Islamic groups and their supporters, mostly in Canada.

Press Cartoon Europe 2016

The PCE (Press Cartoon Europe) is an initiative of the PCB (Press Cartoon Belgium) in association with the International Cartoon Festival held in Knokke-Heist, Belgium. This annual prize awards the best cartoon published in any European country. The competition is open free-of-charge to all cartoonists who publish in European newspapers, magazines or electronic media.

Kap (Jaume Capdevila) est un dessinateur de presse catalan né à Berga, (Barcelonne) le 25 juin 1974. Connu pour ses dessins publiés dans La Vanguardia et El Mundo Deportivo depuis 1997. Ses dessins apparaissent également dans divers autres magazines espagnols et internationaux tels que Siné Mensuel ou le Courrier International.

Il a publié de nembreux albums, compilant ses dessins de presse, et a reçu plusieurs prix, parmi lesquels il faut souligner le Prix International d’Humour Gat Perich (2009) et le Prix Notario del Humor (2015), deux des grands prix de le dessin satírique en Espagne. Kap est également spécialiste de la presse satirique espagnole des XIX et XXème siècles, auteur et co-auteur de divers travaux sur l’histoire du dessin de presse et de la caricature espagnols, et sur divers sujets liés à l’humour et à la satire.

iMinds Press for more Award


ObViz is an artificial intelligence based platform which helps you compare and discover apps for your smartphone. It addresses the lack of structured information on the internet on controversial subjects using cutting edge artificial intelligence methods

Honorary Title for Freedom of Expression

Raif Badawi was born in 1984 and is a Saudi Arabian author, writer, blogger and activist. He created the website “Free Saudi Liberals”, a website that advocates free speech in an autocratic kingdom and that questions some of the basic principles of life in Saudi Arabia. Raif was arrested in 2012 on a charge of insulting Islam through electronic channels and he was brought to court on several charges including apostasy

The Evens Award for European Journalism

Marc Peeperkorn works as an EU correspondent (since 2008) for de Volkskrant, the biggest quality newspaper in the Netherlands.

The encouragement prize for European Journalism

Katarzyna Zachariasz is a Polish freelance journalist writing mainly for Gazeta Wyborcza and Politika