2021 ‘World Press Photo Contest’ for Professional Photographers Worldwide

Competition Grant / Award
  • Apply Before : January 12, 2021
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Opportunity Details

  • Degree Non Degree Program/Certificate
  • Language Requirement Not Required
  • Opportunity Type : Fully Funded
  • Gender MaleFemale
  • Language of Instruction English
  • Opportunity ID 96207
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Opportunity Description

Competition overview

Submissions are currently open for the World Press Photo Contest 2021. Each year, this global contest recognizes and celebrates the best visual journalism produced through a single picture or story exposure by a photographer over the previous year. Applicants can enter either into World Press Photo Contest or World Press Digital Storytelling Contest.

The competition rewards the best photos and visual stories in the following eight categories:

  • Contemporary issues
  • Environment
  • General news
  • Long-term projects
  • Nature
  • Portraits
  • Sports
  • Spot news


Submission deadline: 12 January 2021 (noon time CET)

Organizer: World Press Photo Foundation

Nominee’s announcement: 10 March 2021

Winners Announcement: 15 April 2021


  • It is free to participate
  • Your work is presented anonymously to the jury
  • Winners are featured in global exhibitions and yearbook
  • Winning photos will be published on the foundation’s website and other social media outlets.
  • All winning photographers will be invited to a small online festival including the winners’ announcement, presentations, and lectures, and networking opportunities for the winners to connect to a designated group of jurors, editors, and industry experts.
  • The winners of the World Press Photo of the Year and the World Press Photo Story of the Year awards receive €5,000 each.


  • It is open to all professional photographers around the world.
  • Team entries of two or more photographers are also possible so long as each team member Provides proof of professional status.
  • The photographer(s) must be the author(s) of the pictures entered in his/her/their
  • The photographer(s), or the agency or representative submitting on their behalf, must be the copyright holder(s) or have been allowed by the copyright holder(s) to submit the pictures.
  • An entrant can only enter a picture once, either as a single picture or as part of a story, or as part of a body of work in Long-Term Projects.
  • Pictures can be submitted regardless of they have or have not been published.

Every participant needs to submit a document with a valid date that proves their current professional status. Examples of documents acceptable proof include, but are not limited to:

  • a recent letter of reference (must be from 2019 or 2020) from a photo agency, photo editor, media organization or publication;
  • membership document from a renowned photographic association that shows the photographer is a professional member;
  • at least 1 tearsheet showing your picture/s from 2019 or 2020, with your name visible as credit, in either online or print format from a recognized media organization or publication;
  • journalism union membership card;
  • Press card.

It is at the organization’s discretion to ask for additional information to help understand the entrant’s professional status.


An internationally leading jury of leaders in visual journalism will judge the entries according to their accurate, just, and visually compelling insights about our world.

How to enter?

Participants can enter the contest by submitting their photographs online.

Before submitting make sure you have read the Code of Ethics and Entry Rules. Then, create a Personal Picture account and proceed with submission.

Enter the photo contest HERE.

Enter the digital storytelling contest here.

Technical measures to consider:  

  • Upload images with the original pixel size (unless cropped). No scaling and change in resolution allowed.
  • IICC profile must be embedded. AdobeRGB, sRGB or grayscale Gamma 2.2 are recommended. No CMYK.
  • You must upload in JPEG format with high-quality compression.
  • Pictures must not depict the name of the photographer, agency, or publication, or any other information.
  • All pictures must have correct captions, written in English only, and include all the information described in the guidance on captions.
  • Only single exposure and single frame pictures will be acceptable.

For more information about contest entry rules, submission categories and specifications, you are advised to go to World Press Photo Contest 2021.

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