Reporter from The Guardian Scoops 2003 Europe Prize for Journalism


From left to right: Raymond Georis, Wolfgang Metzner, Yulia Gayday, Pat Cox, Nick Davies and Aidan White.

The winner of the 2003 Europe Prize: Journalism for a Changing World Nick Davies, received his award from European Parliament President Pat Cox in a ceremony in Brussels last week.

Davies won the award for his article "How Britain Lost the War Against Drugs: The Problems of Prohibition" published in The Guardian. The prize is jointly promoted by the International Federation of Journalists and the European Journalism Centre and is co-funded by the Network of European Foundations' European Mercator Fund.

The award goes to outstanding reports, which focus on the social, economic and political impact of drug policy in Europe and thereby promote better understanding within civil society and media about existing drug control mechanisms and the important role that Europe plays in defining drug policy worldwide.

Pat Cox, himself a former journalist, said the strength of the prize was in the fact that it was based upon the principle of journalists judging themselves. The prize-giving ceremony was held at the International Press Centre Résidence Palace in Brussels.

"The Europe prize represents the role the media can play to make European drugs policy accessible to the general public," said Aidan White, IFJ General Secretary. "Davies' article demonstrated a clear and concrete style of reporting bureaucratic drug policy in Great Britain".

Davies received a certificate and a cash award of 8,000 Euro. The runners-up, who received certificates and 1,000 Euro each, were Yulia Gayday from the Ukraine for her article "Infant Face of Drug Dependence" published in Evening News and Wolfgang Metzner from Germany for his article "Generation Hasch - Voll Grass" published in Stern Magazine. White acknowledged the difficult task the Jury faced in short-listing the nominees, showing a positive reflection for the future of reporting drugs in Europe.

A special mention was also given to the Spanish magazine El Periódico for a series of articles on illicit drugs published in the course of 2002 and 2003.

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