European Lab x The Circle


March 14th · La Gaîté Lyrique, Paris 

European Lab is joining forces with The Circle for a one-day event at La Gaîté Lyrique bringing together media professionals, journalists, creatives, and policymakers from all over Europe.

map Paris


Designing Europe’s Media  for All

The European media space is fragmented. Niche publications running on global tech platforms compete to capture small portions of the audience. Waves of new media come up as more and more people and organisations retreat from tech giants. Traditional centres of media production (London/Paris) also attract the majority of the funds. Meanwhile, the growing concentration of media ownership threatens media independence and European democracy. Within this framework, some innovative, inspiring, and inclusive media projects are trying to push back. 

The Circle is one of them. During its pilot phase (2022 to 2024) it kickstarted 8 media hubs in all corners of Europe — Tbilisi, Porto, Vilnius, Lyon, Gothenburg, Cluj-Napoca, Naples and Belgrade. It is putting the spotlight on new — more inclusive, cross-border, and collaborative — ways of doing journalism, building on the design thinking methodology and business model regeneration. It is encouraging a growing network of individuals and teams to apply innovation to future projects across the media space.

Building collaborative, resilient communities is at the core of a strong independent media landscape in Europe. For this, it is necessary to foster relationships between media professionals, from creatives to journalists, in order to break the barriers that stand between groups of like-minded individuals. By joining forces with European Lab, the itinerant talk platform, this The Circle — Designing Europe’s Media for All event aims to facilitate knowledge-sharing and collaboration between media professionals across Europe’s local and cross-border independent media landscape. 

An antidote to the classical network event, to the online meet-ups and countless others, Designing Europe’s Media For All is designed to spark creativity and thought-provoking conversations, in the here, now, and later. It’s designed to be collaborative, participatory, and engaging. 

This one-day event brings together media professionals, journalists, creatives, and policymakers from all over Europe to share their experiences, best practices, and success stories in cross-border media collaboration. Discussions, workshops, and networking sessions will foster cross-cultural understanding and promote high-quality, inclusive journalism. Topics will range from the challenges of crossborder reporting to the necessity of creating communities within the media landscape, the ethics of responsible journalism, and the role of technology in shaping democracy.

Talks and debates :

10:00 —12:00

European Media Speedmeeting

Free of charge, registering is recommended

Speed DatingSpend a morning in the company of the stakeholders in the European media sector. Financing, editorial collaborations, project discoveries: a moment of connection with inspiring personalities.

Caroline Baldeyrou (ARTE I  FR)
Peter Bokor (KultDesk I HU)
Zsofi Borsi (Lazy Women I HU / FR)
Ricardo Esteves Ribeiro (Fumaça I PT)
Sabrina Faramarzi (AWE I  UK / DE)
Anne-Claire Marquet (SPIIL I FR) 
Jamil Mis (Collectif I FR)
Mathieu Molard (Street Press I FR)
Tanishk Saha (France 24 I FR)
Francesco Sebregondi (Index I FR) 
Taha Siddiqui (Dissident Club I PK / FR)
Ben Whitelaw (Financial Times I UK)
And a few more to come.


10:30 – 12:00

Workshop • 
Setting up New Media with Regards to Mental Health

Free of charge, registering is recommended

mediaThis workshop will explore the intersection of media and mental well-being, allowing to gain insights on responsible media creation, and to learn how to foster a supportive working community. It aims at elevating your impact and contributing to a media landscape that promotes positive mental health for all. It will be about discovering the tools and strategies to amplify mental health awareness through cutting-edge media channels. Having navigated her personal journey with bipolar disorder and stressors in the newsroom industry, Belle de Jong specialises in mental health and journalism. With a background in mental health reporting and well-being in cross-border journalism, Belle’s workshop aims to guide media professionals through the challenges within the industry. Join her for an empowering session focussed on fostering dialogue and envisioning solutions for a healthier and more compassionate media landscape.


Belle de Jong (The European Correspondent I NL / MT)



Workshop • 
Design Thinking and Journalism: A Crash Course

Free of charge, registering is recommended

JournalismDesign Thinking and journalism — it’s a marriage that’s long been overlooked, but journalists often already apply design thinking principles (such as keeping your end user or audience in mind with everything that you do) without realising. And there’s much more to use that can help any production or project, at any time.

This workshop is an introduction to the Story Design Sprint, from Are We Europe, where participants will learn to see, adapt and apply design thinking principles in their projects and productions. It doesn’t matter whether you’re an editor, data journalist, photographer or designer, or just interested – anyone will find this useful in their work, whether or not it’s in the field or behind a desk.

The Circle Network has set up 8 hubs using this methodology, and now the program ‘Designing Europe’s Media for All’ will continue to do so across the continent. Get your crash course now.

Moderation: Alex Wolf (Consultant I DE)




Media Fair

Free of charge

Embark on a journey into the future of media collaboration at our Crossborder Connections Media Fair, a pivotal element of this media event. Witness the unveiling of 8 new projects from The Circle, highlighting groundbreaking local and crossborder collaborations. Immerse yourself in a lively atmosphere designed for networking, thought-provoking conversations, and adaptability —creating an exceptional space for meaningful meetings and fostering creative synergies. 

Meet The Circle Hubs:
— 11h00 — 13h00: Tbilisi, Porto, Cluj & Gothenburg
— 14h00 — 16h00: Lyon, Vilnius, Naples & Belgrade


Workshop• Building Networks of Multilingual European independent Media

Free of charge, registering is recommended

workshopThis workshop will delve into the strategies and challenges of fostering collaboration among independent media outlets across Europe. Explore innovative approaches to multilingual content creation, distribution, and audience engagement. Harness the strength of linguistic diversity to amplify your media impact. This is an opportunity to connect, learn, and shape the future of a united and vibrant European independent media landscape.

Ségolène Allemandou (Journalist I FR)
Peter Bokor (EM GUIDE I HU)



Workshop •
Unlocking Opportunities: Navigating European Fundings for Independent Media 

Free of charge, registering is recommended

podcastFunding schemes for independent media are not well known – because there are not many of them. In recent years, the European Union has launched a number of calls for projects dedicated to the sector, notably as part of the NEWS calls under the Creative Europe programme. Other European programmes, such as Erasmus+, can support mobility and European cooperation. By encouraging cooperation between print and online media organisations, these schemes can enable players in the European media landscape to get together and work on joint productions. Combating misinformation, audience development, new business models, collaborative practices, skills development, support for local media and investigative journalism… several types of projects can be supported under these schemes. During the final event of The Circle (a consortium supported by this programme) as part of European Lab, Vincent Soccodato from Relais Culture Europe will be holding a session to decipher these calls for projects and encourage the creation of new collaborative journalistic projects on a European scale.

Vincent Soccodato (Relais Culture Europe I FR)

Powered by Relais Culture Europe



Keynote • 
Designing Europe’s Media for All

Free of charge, registering is recommended

MikeThe European media space could use some good design. The intersection between journalism and design is there to be explored. New media projects need better good designed set-ups, models and inclusive approaches, meant to be accessible to all, without technical, structural, and societal barriers. The new creed of Are We Europe – Designing Europe’s Media for All – is meant to be a rallying cry for all actors, for media big & small, legacy & independent, team & creator. A call for media to design their project and publications with the end user – the audience, the partners – in mind, to design adaptable, resilient organisations and diversify their revenue models. And to break down barriers to access to highly important information, whether these are visible or invisible barriers, and for those with visible or invisible disabilities. The keynote will be the center point of The Circle event, by its initiator, part of this partner-led consortium that has gone to 8 cities across Europe to build better bridges between media organisation.

 Mick ter Reehorst (Are We Europe / NL)



Talk & Screening • Crossborder Collaboration in European Media Landscape

Free of charge, registering is recommended

Building collaborative, resilient communities is at the core of a strong independent media landscape in Europe. For this, new ways of doing journalism need to be designed and discussed. The Circle is a first answer to the sector’s renewal. It is a new approach to cross-border journalism and collaboration. By bringing together creatives, journalists & media entrepreneurs to set up the next generation of collaborative media hubs, the project proposes a new vision for the European media landscape, more inclusive, cross-border, and collaborative. This crossborder collaborative approach also aims at building bridges between legacy media and new media organisations to explore the latest formats.

How can this vision be spread in a more effective way across Europe? What challenges are crossing these practices? How can we elaborate solutions to these challenges to better navigate these spaces? How to better enhance these collaborations to make European independent media more balanced and represented?

Christina Lee (Hostwriter / Unbias the News I US / DE)
Lara Rindt (n-ost I DE)
Rimma Sammir (Are we Europe I KZ)
Clarisse Teyssandier (Arty Farty I FR)
Moderation: Sabrina Faramarzi (Are We Europe I UK / DE)



Radio Lab • 
A Collection of Podcasts

Free of charge, registering is recommended

Talk and screeningDive into the rich tapestry of European storytelling at our Radio Lab, an integral part of our crossborder collaboration-focused media event. Immerse yourself in the diverse world of European podcasts through captivating presentations, riveting extracts, and exclusive mini-interviews with the brilliant minds behind the shows. Join us in exploring the significance of podcasts in the European media landscape, celebrating the vast array of formats and topics that make this medium a dynamic force in storytelling.

Marie-Yemta Moussanang (Independent researcher I FR / TD)
Karolis Vyšniauskas (NARA I LT)
Laetitia Chabannes (Europe et Sentiment I FR)
Zsofi Borsi (Lazy Women I HU)
Ricardo Esteves Ribeiros (Fumaça I PT)


18:30 – 20:00

Talk •
Media, Technology and Democracy

Free of charge, registering is recommended

The digital scene is no exception to the strong concentration observed in the media landscape. Once a space of diverse opinions, the internet is now deeply influenced by Tech Giants, who, through major acquisitions, wield considerable power over key platforms of democratic discourse (for example, Twitter, which has become X). Technology has become an instrument of power and sovereignty, creating a new dimension in international relations. Technological races, particularly between China and the United States, shape the contours of this new hegemony, where the possession and control of technological advancements equate to power. This is now known as the ‘splinternet’: a concept that considers the global internet, once seen as a utopia for democracy at its inception, is giving rise to the formation of distinct ideological blocs guided by specific political and ideological interests. These blocs are recreated online thanks to algorithms which limit the free diffusion of information. By creating information bubbles based on a little research, the audience – and in consequence media and journalists – finds itself locked into a spiral of similar news – or fake news. How can we keep online democratic discourse free from ideological interests? What is cyber-skepticism? How does the action of Open Source Intelligence (OSINT) unfold in support of the media and safeguard democracy? What consequences will the development of Artificial Intelligence have in this debate?

Asma Mhalla (Geopolitics of tech specialist I FR
Evgeny Morozov (Author I IT) 
Andrei Petre (The Circle I RO)

Moderation: Amaelle Guiton (Libération I FR)

In co-programming with Europod , to mark the launch of the podcast Les Santiago Boys

18:30 – 20:00

DJ-set • DJ Tűz

Free of charge

DJ TűzDJ Tűz, also known as a member of the Pizza Amore duo, is a prominent figure in Budapest’s music scene with a rich history of performances at smaller clubs and major festivals like Sziget, Ozora, Daad, Kolorádó or Bánkitó. By day, he works as a developer, but in his spare time he also supports the IT team of Lahmacun Radio, where he and his friends host their own show called ‘Learning Audio Classification with Torso’.




20:30 —21:30

Performance • 

Archives, ties, and (ID)eas
Reading of selected texts

The reading oscillates between a wish to share and convey the authors voices and another one to archive them for their memory to be shared. The selection of texts wishes to underline the cultural and political ties between several decolonial contexts. The texts will convey the voices of, cultural workers, journalists and story-tellers and commented by the readers carefully crafting the links between them.
As the first part of the reading establishes links through words, the second one does so with the help of images sharing with the audiences « Quinquina Diaspora », a video work by Samir Laghouati-Rashwan aligned with the topics carried through the texts.

Zola Chichmintseva-Kondamambou (Beyond the post-soviet I FR)
Iris Ouedraogo (Association des Journalistes Antiracistes et Racisé.e.s I FR)

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