Four regional winners in the INMA Global Innovation Awards were announced Wednesday, signifying excellence in media company innovation programmes. A global winner will be announced May 13 at the INMA World Congress in San Francisco.

The regional Global Innovation Awards recipients are:

  • Best in the Americas: Gannett, United States, for “Gannett Innovation Grants Program.” In this initiative, Gannett employees were invited to propose new product ideas that could receive funding.

    Eight ideas were selected from 70 entries, ranging from digital and mobile projects to new potential revenue streams. The programme included mentoring, subject matter experts, high-level pitches and judging, and was described by participants as a “mini-MBA.”
  • Best in Asia/Pacific: Fairfax Media, Australia, for “Real-Time Working: The Media Model.” The Real-Time Working project at Fairfax is a metrics-focused series of technological strategies aimed at enabling more efficient and flexible work by individuals and teams.

    In implementing Real-Time Working, Fairfax aimed for more agile and responsive business operations and an inspiring and collaborative workplace that embodied its brand.
  • Best in Europe: MittMedia, Sweden, for “FutureWorks: Accelerating Innovation and Building Personal Capacity for Learning and Change.” FutureWorks is a change management programme, an integration project, an individual training programme, and an innovation lab aimed at creating an ongoing process of product, audience, and revenue ideation and incubation.

    FutureWorks is designed to infuse a “new, modern corporate culture” into MittMedia and involved a comprehensive approach to innovating routinely.
  • Best in South Asia: Bennett, Coleman and Co. Ltd., India, for “Transforming Print Media Sales Culture Through Technology.” The sales culture transformation programme looked at ending silo selling, more efficient pricing, driving agility and creating a climate of accountability, and data-driven selling.

    The programme included intense effort at changing the internal culture to one that encourages efficiency, agility, and accountability.

From these four regional winners, a global award recipient will be unveiled at the closing dinner of the INMA World Congress May 13 at the Fairmont Hotel in San Francisco. Regional winners’ innovation programmes will be presented at the World Congress and awards formally presented.

The INMA Global Innovation Awards are designed to shine a spotlight on the fast-emerging structured innovation programmes of media companies seeking new foundations in transformational times.

Criteria for entries received from around the world included:

  • Ideation and incubation: Structured activities to create an ongoing process of product, audience, and revenue ideation and incubation.
  • Transform the culture: Structured activities to inject entrepreneurialism, agility, and teamwork into the corporate culture.
  • Attract young talent: Structures activities to help media brands become magnets for young, multi-platform talent.
  • Innovation mindsets: Structured activities to develop innovation mindsets near the core, adjacent to the core, and away from the core.

While much of the focus of innovation in the media industry has been on end products, the INMA Global Innovation Awards competition in 2014 aims to shine a light on the innovation programmes themselves.

“With this new competition, INMA wants to reward the people, programmes, and processes behind the emerging innovation culture in the media industry – the foundations upon which novel ideas are being launched at a rapid rate,” said Earl J. Wilkinson, executive director and CEO of INMA. “We want to reward media companies that are mastering the art of innovating routinely.”