2017 Pulitzer Prizes: Here are the top contenders for the coveted journalism awards

Namrata Tripathi
Pulitzer Prize logo

The winners and finalists of Pulitzer Prizes will be announced at 3 pm EST on Monday, April 10. Pulitzer administrator Mike Pride will reveal the winners chosen for 14 journalism categories, along with finalists from seven other arts and literature sections.

The entire event will be live-streamed from the historic World Room of the journalism building at New York's Columbia University.

You can watch the event here:

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There were a total of 1,187 journalism entries this year for the United States' oldest annual awards, a noted increase from last year's submissions. The Pulitzer Prizes are handed out to the best entries from varying journalism categories including Public Service; Investigative, Breaking News, Explanatory, and Local, National and International Reporting; Breaking News and Feature Photography; Feature Writing; Commentary, Criticism, Editorial Writing and Cartooning.

However, this year there will be a special focus on the US' biggest story of 2016: The US presidential elections. The awards will pay particular emphasis to the works of journalists who covered the presidential campaign and Donald Trump's victory.

Here are some of the top contenders for Pulitzer Prizes:

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2016 US Presidential campaigns and elections:

Donald Trump

The Washington Post's David Fahrenthold

The Washington Post's David Fahrenthold has high chances of bagging the coveted prize for his investigative piece on Trump Foundation. Fahrenthold's investigations revealed detailed deception in Trump Foundation's charitable giving patterns, and also helped in bringing forth Trump's controversial video tape, in which the Republican president was heard talking about women in derogatory terms and using lewd language.

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Fahrenthold has already bagged Long Island University's George Polk Awards for Political Reporting and the Robin Toner Prize from Syracuse University for his investigative work during the elections campaign.

ProPublica's Alec MacGillis

ProPublica's Alec MacGillis' work during the presidential campaign has been widely praised. MacGillis, during the campaign, identified trends among voters in Rust Belt states that "the political establishment ignored, dismissed or overlooked."

MacGillis, in his article 'Revenge of the Forgotten Class,' pointed out how the Republican presidential candidate Hillary Clinton and the "Democrats were playing with fire when they effectively wrote off white workers in the small towns and cities of the Rust Belt." Experts state that Clinton campaign's disregard for white workers in the Rust Belt states cost their candidate the presidential seat.

MacGillis bagged the George Polk award for national reporting earlier this year. The Scripps Howard Foundation's awards also honoured MacGillis' work with an award titled "Topic of the Year" in March.

International Reporting:

panama papers

The main contender for Pulitzer's International Reporting award is the "Panama Papers" series by International Consortium of Investigative Journalists and other news organizations. The Panama Papers reports analysed leaked documents which provided material from the files of a global law firm in the Central American country. The documents revealed how companies and famous individuals across the world had hid assets in massive offshore accounts.

Over 400 reporters from media organisations across the world worked on the Panama Papers reports.

The Panama Project won the prestigious Investigative Reporters and Editors Awards and also the American Society of News Editors Awards. The report also bagged a Polk award for Financial Reporting and a Scripps award for Business/Economics Reporting.


Filipino activists protest against Dutertes drug war killings

The New York Times photographer Daniel Berehulak could bag an award in today's event. Berehulak had won a Polk for a photo essay titled "They Are Slaughtering Us Like Animals," which details pictures of Philippines President Rodrigo Duterte's murderous drug crackdown, which resulted in a loss of thousands of lives.

Dallas Morning News had also won American Society of News Editors Awards for their work covering the Dallas ambush of police, and is a likely contender to bag a Pulitzer for photojournalism.

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The Pulitzer Prizes have increased their cash prize for winners this year by almost 50 percent to $15,000. The coveted Pulitzer Prize for Public Service still does not have any cash prize attached to it and comes with a gold medal.

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