Announcing Podcast Pitch Award Shortlist 2024

We are thrilled to announce the shortlist for the Podcast 2024 Funding Awards.

This year, we have been overwhelmed by the volume of high-quality applications from around the world.

After extensive deliberation, we have carefully curated a shortlist of 14 projects that have captivated us with their originality and promise (listed below in alphabetical order).

Jane Ray, Consultant Artistic Director, The Whickers says “We are thrilled and moved by the quality and variety of the projects submitted to this year’s podcasting pitch awards. It is a joy to tune in to such wondrous new stories from around the world. We are transported from Malaysia to Morocco, Sardinia to Sarajevo, Ghana to Gateshead and everywhere in-between.  From the heart-breaking to the hilarious, incisively investigative to the fabulously whimsical.”

These projects will go head-to-head in our deliberation later this month and are all one step closer to being selected as one of six finalists who will then pitch at Sheffield DocFest 2024 for the chance to win the award of £5,000 and a development fund of £2,000.

We extend our heartfelt gratitude to all the applicants who have participated in this award. The continued increase in the number of submissions each year is a testament to the thriving creativity within the podcasting community. Thank you, and best of luck to all!

Without further ado, here is the shortlist for the Podcast Pitch 2024 Award:


Degenerate | Matthew Durai | Malaysia / Singapore / UK / US

What happens when a 35 year old finds out he has inherited early onset Alzheimer’s? The clock is ticking: his investigation into the disease is supposed give him answers, instead he discovers that knowing his fate has granted him the freedom to truly live.

Fight Fair | Libby Liburd | UK

This is the story of how a single mother and her child find strength, belonging and joy in the most unlikely of places: the world of boxing.

If Only youth Could Return Some Day | Sarah Mounia Kachiri | Morocco

If only youth could return some day is an ode to resilience, transmission, and memory. From questioning a speculative future, we find answers by listening to the vibrant voices of the community of a cultural centre in the heart of Marrakech.

Insta-body | Nina Robinson | UK / Turkey / Dominican Republic

Pamela Bailey believes in self-love and surgery. She offers a non-judgemental insider’s view to the current explosive trend in Brazilian butt lifts, tummy-tucks, breast augmentation and more; all based on her experiences of traveling as a ‘surgery friend’ to women seeking out their ‘insta-body’ in Turkey and the Dominican Republic.

Iron Butterfly: The Lies, Truths, and Enduring Impact of Imelda Marcos | Roby Alampay | Philippines

Beyond those shoes: this series explores and explains the rise, fall, and perplexing rise once more of the Marcos family in the Philippines, despite their notoriety for corruption and human rights abuses. Using the personal journey of the powerful, enigmatic clan’s most compelling character, their matriarch, Imelda Marcos, this series is at the same time a contemplation on the masterful use of disinformation, false narratives, and historical revisionism that enabled their return and resilience.

Keening: The Song before the Stranding | Aoife Glass | UK

Combining science, music, art and community, artist Sam Gare and science communicator Aoife Glass explore the story of a mass stranding on the Isle of Lewis in July 2023, the impact it had on the people involved, and what happened next. Ultimately the song of the pilot whale pod ended.

Person, place, thing | Pheladi Sethusa | South Africa

The legacy of apartheid in South Africa lives in very pronounced physical and socio-economic disparities but, more sinisterly, in the nuanced interactions between its people. Everyone has a story of the person, place or thing that made them realise this first hand.

Punching | Samantha Stone | UK

My brother and I deal with anger in different ways: I ruminate on my feelings in a quiet room at weekly Quaker meetings and he “beats the sh*t” out of someone in a cage. In this story we’ll strive to understand each other better through experiencing each other’s worlds.

Rewriting the Narrative | Christina Hardinge | UK

What if you could rewrite the story of your own life? And get to know yourself in an entirely new way? Rewriting the narrative is a podcast that does exactly that – following different people as they shift their perspective to rediscover who they truly are.

Rules Apply | Hedda Stølen | USA / Norway / Denmark / Germany / India

Rules Apply playfully challenges global societal norms with irreverent storytelling. Exploring diverse laws, regulations, and customs, the series prompts curiosity, uncovering all the peculiar regulations from mythical creature hunting permits to protocols for alien contact, sparking the question: What do our rules say about us?

The Balloon Warriors | Mateo Schimpf | US

Balloon Warriors investigates the world of North Korean defectors fighting for their beliefs – using balloons. It’s a wild ride through the politics of propaganda that includes assassination attempts, Interpol investigations, CIA operations, and a Christian rock festival, and explores just how far people will go to change hearts and minds.

The Foil | Maya Kroth | US

When a mysterious metal turns up in a Michigan schoolhouse, a teacher becomes convinced it came from space. In The Foil, an eccentric professor and his doubting daughter hunt for an explanation, and for the schoolgirl who could prove the existence of alien life.

The Gap: Queer Stories from the Analog Era | Ira Putilova | UK

Captivating stories from trans, non-binary and queer people who went on journeys of shaping their gender identities and sexuality in remote places of the UK before the era of the internet.

The World in a Pickle : Agnieszka Pokrywka | Finland

The World in a Pickle is a podcast series that unravels geopolitical conflicts through local fermented foods.