In January 2015, The International Academic Forum (IAFOR) proudly announced the launch of the IAFOR Documentary Photography Award – an award which seeks to promote and assist in the professional development of emerging documentary photographers and photojournalists.

Since that time, the award has grown tremendously and is now partnered with some of the world’s most prestigious institutions in the fields of communication and media, including World Press Photo, British Journal of Photography and University of the Arts London, among others, and is judged by leading professionals in the field of documentary photography and photojournalism, including our Founding Judge, Paul Lowe (Panos Pictures/University of the Arts London), Ed Kashi (VII Photo Agency) and Simon Roberts.

In support of up-and-coming talent, the IAFOR Documentary Photography Award is free to enter.

Winners will be announced this summer at The European Conference on Media, Communication and Film (July 11 – July 14, 2016) in Brighton, England. The award follows the theme of the conference, with 2016’s theme being “Justice”.

The Grand Prize Winner will receive the following as part of their prize package:

Read more about our Prizes

We would like to thank everyone who has already entered this year’s award. For those yet to enter, please ensure that you upload your work before the final submission deadline of midnight on June 1 (Greenwich Mean Time – GMT).

How to enter the 2016 IAFOR Documentary Photography Award

Applicants must be younger than 31 years old on June 1, 2016 OR enrolled in part-time or full time education on June 1, 2016 (proof may be required).

The theme of this year’s award is “Justice”. Each applicant may submit 10 to 20 images related to the award theme, either in the form of a photo-essay or as a collection of single images. We hope that the broad nature of this theme will encourage photographers to submit work that explores justice from a variety of perspectives.

Photographs must be submitted via the online submission system on the submission page. Registration is required to enter the award. Only entries submitted via the award website will be accepted. Please ensure that you carefully follow the instructions listed on the submission requirements page before submitting your work.


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Special thanks to all of our supporters World Press Photo, British Journal of Photography, University of the Arts London, Metro Imaging, Think Tank Photo, Centre for Documentary Practice, RMIT University, Medill School of Journalism and MediaStorm.

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Image by Romain Champalaune | 2015 Third Place Winner

Thaddeus Pope

Posted by Thaddeus Pope

Thaddeus Pope is the Director of Design, Media & Marketing for The International Academic Forum (IAFOR) and the Creative Director of the IAFOR Documentary Photography Award.