EIC is a non-exclusive Network, meaning that members can be part of other Networks, but only one medium or media outlet from each European country can be an EIC member, ensuring national exclusivity.
The basis for cooperation among EIC member organisations is the regular sharing of information and consultations on possible story ideas. They have regular meetings and work on several fronts: tackling European stories; finding, compiling, processing or analysing big data-sets; developing under Free Software license their own Network collaborative tools, platforms und information design.
Between 2017 and 2019, Journalismfund Europe allowed EIC to investigate stories thoroughly and independently, by operating as a firewall between donors and journalists. The grant agreements were signed between the donors and Journalismfund Europe who was sub-granting to the individual journalists. Journalismfund Europe paid out the working grants and all expenses to the journalists and handled the financial reporting to both the team of journalists and the donors. This enabled the journalists to focus on their prime goal ‘investigative journalism’ and to be rid of the administrative and financial burden. As such, Journalismfund Europe provided an incubator that allowed EIC to further develop and to become established while simultaneously guaranteeing full independence from the donors.
EIC TEAM AND PARTNERS
Stefan Candea coordinates the Network communication, workflow and tools development. Each investigative collaboration will have him working closely with the story initiator to decide on the work plan, tools and publication schedule.
Discussions related to establishing this European Network started in 2015 and involved Jörg Schmitt, Jürgen Dahlkamp, Alfred Weinzierl and Klaus Brinkbäumer from Spiegel and Stefan Candea from the Romanian Centre for Investigative Journalism. Alain Lallemand from Le Soir joined the group, and later John Hansen from Politiken, Milorad Ivanovic from Newsweek Serbia, Florian Klenk from Falter, Paula Guisado from El Mundo, Vlad Odobescu from The Romanian Centre for Investigative Journalism, Michael Bird from The Black Sea, Fabrice Arfi from Mediapart and Vittorio Malagutti from L'Espresso.
EIC partners are pulling together resources to do investigative research but also to develop tools and information design. EIC is building tools under a Free Software Licence and the lead developer is DER SPIEGEL IT department, but all EIC member organisations commit themselves to contribute.
From 2017 to 2019 Journalismfund Europe managed the funds allocated to EIC by Adessium Foundation. EIC's stories were in no way assigned by the donor. The responsibility lay exclusively with the journalists.