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NOTE: The 2023 Call for Submissions is closed.

KPBS Explore San Diego

About

Local Content is at the Heart of KPBS. It increases our sense of place, connects audiences over shared experiences and reflects our diverse community. The KPBS Explore Local Content Project was launched in 2012 as a way to provide more local programming for our audiences. Since the project’s inception, we’ve collaborated with over 35 local producers on new ideas for programs that make us think, help us dream, and keep us connected.

Every two years the KPBS Explore Local Content Project sends out a community-wide call for the next big content idea and will pledge seed funding to the most promising proposals. The ‘Request for Ideas’ is open to anyone with an idea and the talent needed to create an audio or video content production for distribution across KPBS platforms. We are especially interested in ideas that showcase local arts and culture through performance, history, review, or critical study. KPBS is looking to increase the amount of arts and culture content we provide the community, and the Explore RFP is your chance to be part of something exciting.

  • The 2023 Call for Submissions is closed.
  • Selected proposals will undergo a three-tiered process that will culminate in a final Proof of Concept.

Contact Information

Content Questions and Guidance:

John Decker

Sr. Director of Content Development

(619) 594-3037

jdecker@kpbs.org

Submission Admin and Consultant:

Jodi Cilley

Founder and President of Film Consortium San Diego

(619) 512-2403

filmconsd@gmail.com

For Media and Partnership Inquiries:

Heather Milne Barger

Director of Communications & Marketing

(619) 594-4985

hmilne@kpbs.org

Important Dates

Round One

Request for Ideas (RFI)

  • The 2023 Call for Submissions is closed.
  • Explore Submission Orientation 9/5/2023 (In-Person)
  • Explore Submission Orientation 9/7/2023 (Virtual)
  • Final Day to Submit Ideas 10/15/2023
  • Selected Ideas Notified of Advancement - 11/6/2023

Round Two

Advancing Ideas, Full Proposal Submissions

  • Final Day to Submit Full Proposals 12/17/2023
  • Selected Proposals Notified of Advancement Week of 1/19/2024
  • Proposal Pitches Weeks of 2/12 - 2/19/2024 (In-Person)
  • Selected Proposal Pitches Notified of Advancement Week of 2/26/2024

Round Three

Proof of Concept Production Period

  • Proof of Concepts Due 5/1/2024
  • Proof of Concept Pitches Week of 6/24/2024 (In-Person)
  • Proof of Concept Finalists Notified Week of 7/1/2024

KPBS Explore Local Content Project Virtual Workshop 2024

At this KPBS Explore Orientation, you'll get an overview of the project, learn about fair use and copyright from New Media Rights, and get a chance to pitch your idea (omitted from this recording). Let's create something extraordinary!

Submission Process

Get ready to take your creative idea to the next level with KPBS! Here's how you can participate in the journey from concept to creation:

Round One

Participants will be asked to submit an idea synopsis for a podcast, TV series, documentary or digital series that will fit into KPBS’ content initiatives, especially those involving arts and culture. Submitted ideas will be reviewed and assessed for uniqueness, originality, sense of place, diversity, audience and potential for use across multiple platforms. Content creators with promising ideas will advance to Round 2.

What you will need to prepare your submission:

  • Working title of your project

  • Brief project description

  • Project format (podcast, digital series, TV, etc.)

  • Genre

  • Target audience

  • Explanation of the connection to San Diego and how your project embodies a sense of place

Round Two

Content creators advancing to Round 2 will submit a complete proposal that will include a treatment, budget, production deliverables timeline, professional resume, and samples of previous work. To be selected for Round 3, content creators must have past experience in content creation and a proven track record of successfully executing project ideas on time.

Round Three

In the third and final round, selected projects will receive a stipend to produce a Proof of Concept. This Proof of Concept may take the form of a pilot episode, a program or series trailer, or a scene excerpted from the project. The goal of this round is to convey the project’s vision and concept, as well as demonstrate the executability of the idea and the skills of the production team. At the completion of the Proof of Concept production period and after all selected projects have been reviewed, one or more finalists will be selected to receive seed funding.

Judging Criteria

Selected proposals will be evaluated through a rigorous committee selection process and rated on the following:

  • Executability:Of primary importance is your ability to execute your project using the funds and timeframe detailed in your proposal. Our committee is composed of industry professionals who will evaluate your budget and ability to complete your program on time. While the Explore project is fueled by aspirations, it is essential that you can execute your project.
  • Explorer Spirit: How will your project embody the “Explorer Spirit”? Public media invites audiences from all walks of life to explore new worlds, discover new ideas and broaden their horizons. We are inclusive, diverse and respectful of our audience. Our audience is smart, connected and idealistic. How will your project engage them?
  • Sense of Place: How will you establish a sense of place in your project? We are looking for content that is uniquely local, that tells a story or shared experience about our community. A sense of place comes from many things: language, food, culture, music, travel, geography, heritage, education, art, science, hobbies, passions, media, etc. How will you tell San Diego’s stories?
  • Elements of Craft: To the extent possible, you will need to demonstrate your ability in crafting content: i.e. lighting, framing, audio, scripting, editing, etc. Because of the relatively short production schedule, KPBS Explore works best for people who have prior experience in production and can act quickly to solve problems along the way.
  • Elements of Diversity: How will your project reflect the diversity in our community? Keep in mind that diversity can take many forms, which means that we are looking for your unique perspective.

Seed funding will be provided to the producer who best demonstrates:

  1. An innovative idea that aligns with the judging criteria
  2. A firm understanding of how to create content using public media sensibilities
  3. A track record of executing content projects on deadline

Frequently Asked Questions(FAQ)

  • What content formats are accepted?

    All content formats are accepted: Podcast, Web Series, TV Series, Feature Documentary, but we are particularly interested in ideas for Podcasts and TV Series.

  • How will my idea be judged?

    Finalists will be selected on the completeness of their Proof of Concept, originality, craft, executability and how the project fits into the overall KPBS program strategy.

  • What details do you have about an emphasis on arts and culture content?

    KPBS is beginning a multi-year plan to increase the amount of local arts and culture content that we provide to our audiences. We feel that there is a dearth of arts curation for mass audiences in San Diego, and we hope to use the Explore Project as an avenue for more ideas to come to life. We are particularly interested in arts performance of all genres of music, dance, and theater. Also of interest are projects that explore arts history, critique/review, and other cultural aspects of our community.

  • Are points or percentages used within the established evaluation rubric? Do all sections have the same weight?

    Points are used in the evaluation rubric as a starting place for evaluation. Each project is considered on its individual merits.

  • Who can I contact for more info on the submission process?

    Jodi Cilley | Founder and President, Film Consortium San Diego (619) 512-2403 / filmconsd@gmail.com

  • Who can I contact for more info on content proposals?

    John Decker | KPBS Sr. Director of Content Development | jdecker@kpbs.org

  • How much seed money will be given?

    Up to $30,000 total will be awarded among project finalists based on scale and at the sole discretion of KPBS.

  • Where can I learn more about other sources of project funding?

    Past projects have raised additional funds through corporate or business underwriting, individual donors and crowd-funding campaigns.

Click the links below for more details

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Contact Information

Contact Information

Content Questions and Guidance:

John Decker

KPBS Sr. Director of Content Development

(619) 594-3037

jdecker@kpbs.org

Submission Admin and Consultant:

Jodi Cilley

Founder and President of Film Consortium San Diego

(619) 512-2403

filmconsd@gmail.com

For Media and Partnership Inquiries:

Heather Milne Barger

Director of Communications & Marketing

(619) 594-4985

hmilne@kpbs.org

Mailing Address

KPBS Public Media
5200 Campanile Drive
San Diego, CA 92182
(619) 594-1515

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