This is always a very special evening in the NZSA calendar. It is surprisingly rare that journalists from all publications get together – that is something that was clearly evident in the new-format 2022 NZSA Journalism Awards, held in the Maritime Room on Auckland’s waterfront in November 2022.
The theme of the evening seemed to be about ‘connection’ – between journalists, the corporate representatives present and NZSA. The prize money on offer was heavily supported by Simplicity – the second year they have acted as a key supporter for the Awards.
NZSA’s role in the Awards remains relevant and critical. NZSA continues to run these awards as an independent arbiter, a key role in a world manifest with conflicted interests. All NZSA members should be interested in this – if ‘sunlight is the best disinfectant’, then both media and NZSA play a strong role in determining where the light should shine. It’s a sad reality for NZSA that there are many more issues to look into than we ever have resource. As an organisation, we need to work harder to make sure that as many members as possible have the opportunity to attend the event in person in future.
The informality of the evening worked well – a mingling of conversations with the clink of glasses – followed by a short Awards ceremony for the five prizes on offer, with more socialising and networking.
While NZSA received around 60 entries for the Awards, it was disappointing that there were no representatives from Stuff or Newsroom this year. There’s plenty more that we can do to encourage participation from all media organisations – all play their role in providing business and financial transparency to different groups of New Zealanders.
NZSA does not believe that business journalism is something that should be contained to a rarefied few.NZSA CEO, Oliver Mander, in his Journalism Awards speech, 2023
We’re also aware that the current format of the Awards does not lend itself well to other types of media, such as podcast or radio. Certainly, podcasts form a strong platform as a basis for broadcasting quality investigative journalism.
There are five awards on offer:
The Business News Award looks for articles that break new stories or provide significant new information. Key factors include the perseverance of the writer to get to the bottom of an issue and the breath of sources used.
The Business Commentary Award highlights the role of considered analysis in determining an opinion.
Business Features allow a more in-depth output, with a heavy focus on research, creating simple messages from complex situations and creating a fair and accurate output.
NZSA also makes an award for the Emerging Business Journalist of the Year and, of course, an Overall Business Journalist of the Year.
The Business News category was won by Oliver Lewis (published in Business Desk) for his article focused on the project management of Te Kaha – the new Christchurch Stadium development.
Dita de Boni (NBR) won the Business Commentary award for her article on the Australian aged-care sector, and the balance between sector interests and legislation.
There were TWO winners of the Business Features Award: Tim Hunter (NBR) for his article on the practices of the insurance sector, and Murray Jones (Business Desk) for his three-part series on the Mormon Church.
Riley Kennedy (ODT, Business Desk) was named as the Emerging Business Journalist with Tim Hunter picking up the ‘overall’ winner award for the second time in his career.
We are all looking forward to the 2023 edition – the entry process for tis begins shortly!