1. Background and competition overview

Every year, the National Institute of Statistics of Rwanda (NISR) organizes a data storytelling competition that invites Rwandan journalists to submit their data-driven stories for awards. This initiative by NISR aims to recognize outstanding works in the field of data journalism in Rwanda. The objective of this award is to promote excellence and creativity in reporting statistics-based stories to the Rwandan public, particularly in this era of data revolution. Journalistic reportage now requires practices that include statistical analyses, interpretations, and visualizations to convey complex and sensitive stories in a simple and convincing way.

The competition is divided into three categories: Radio, Online, and TV. Awards are given to exemplary data-driven stories from these categories that use data to have a positive impact on society. The winners will be announced and awarded in December 2023, during the celebration of African Statistics Day.

2. Competition Message:

For the 1st Phase of evaluation, journalists are invited to submit their data story ideas or pitches related to 16 thematic reports from the 5th Rwanda Population and Housing Census (RPHC5):

  • Educational Characteristics of the Population
  • Population projections
  • Social Economic Status of the Youth 
  • Social Economic Status of people with disabilities
  • Social Economic Status of Children
  • Economic activities
  • Gender
  • Social- cultural characteristics
  • Social Economic status of elderly people 
  • Non- Monetary poverty 
  • Agriculture
  • Migration and Spatial mobility
  • Mortality 
  • Fertility
  • Marital Status and Nuptiality
  • Housing and household characteristics

3. Categories awarded

Category One: Excellence in Online Data story
Description: Best interactive or static visualization combined with a story that accomplishes a journalistic purpose and uses data significantly in online media.

Open to individual journalists (online)

  • First Prize: Certificate and Laptop
  • Second Prize: Certificate and Tablet

Category Two: Excellence in Radio Data story
Description: Best data-driven journalism in radio news stories.

Open to individual journalists (Radio)

  • First Prize: Certificate and Laptop
  • Second Prize: Certificate and Tablet

Category Three: Excellence in TV Data story

Description: Best data-driven journalism on TV news stories or programs.

Open to individual journalists (TV)

  • First Prize: Certificate and Laptop
  • Second Prize: Certificate and Tablet


  • We actively seek submissions from online and broadcast journalists and bloggers. Story ideas can be developed in English, Kinyarwanda, or in French. Competitors must be prepared to develop, publish, or air their stories right after the training which will be conducted for selected stories ideas. Among those developed during the boot camp, the 2nd Phase of evaluation will select the best winning stories  in each category for award.
  • Individual journalists and freelancers in accredited media houses are eligible for the Data Journalism Awards. Works produced by individuals or teams of journalists from media companies and non-profit organizations, as well as freelancers or individuals are all eligible for entry.
  • Works produced by staffers or freelancers collaborating with government agencies, businesses, or trade organizations with a stake (financial or of other nature) in the issue at hand are not eligible. In other words, the awards are not given to business data visualizations or projects produced for branding purposes.
  • The RDJA administrators have the final authority to determine whether an entry is eligible or not. 


Applicants must be Rwandan citizens or permanent residents and possess a valid media card.

The following two points describe a set of criteria that will be considered in the evaluation of the submissions in all categories:

  1. Clarity and Comprehension: Ensuring that the data effectively communicates its message to the public by employing accurate data representation, visual aesthetics, creativity, originality, and distinctive infographics or other visualization techniques used in journalistic stories or programs.
  2. Human-Centric Focus: The content should prioritize people and their well-being by establishing connections between data and human lives. It should maintain a balanced blend of subjectivity and objectivity.
  3. Measurable Impact: Evaluate the impact of the entry in enhancing public comprehension of data and its role in elevating statistical literacy among Rwandans. Focus on accessible analysis, clear explanations, and the utilization of statistical concepts in the narrative or program.
  4. Content Quality and Diversity: Assess the quality of the content, considering factors like clarity, accuracy, and the range of subjects covered.


Submission Deadline: All entries submitted via links or URLs should be completed through an online submission form, which will be accessible on the NISR website. The deadline for submissions is November 20th, 2023, at 23:59 GMT.

Click here to submit your entry now

Final Winners Announcement: The winners in each of the three categories (Online, Radio, and TV) will be determined after a boot camp and training session. These winners will be officially announced and awarded during the celebration of African Statistics Day in December 2023.