NPR Training
Storytelling tips and best practices

Apply for the 2018 NPR Story Lab Workshop

The Story Lab Workshop is designed to help teams grow the seed of an audio storytelling idea into something with real shape and direction. (Bria Granville/NPR)

Do you have a big idea that you haven’t had time develop? A public radio series? A podcast? An innovative audio storytelling project?

We want to help you move it from idea to execution at the third NPR Story Lab Workshop, a free training experience designed to help small teams shape an audio project. It’s part of NPR’s mission to elevate new ideas and help develop great storytelling on all platforms.

The workshop will be held May 8-11, 2018 at NPR HQ in Washington, D.C. We are no longer accepting applications. 


Frequently asked questions

We will choose up to 10 teams made up of public media journalists from Member stations and NPR, as well as independent audio producers. During the workshop, you’ll be given the space to incubate your ideas and learn storytelling best practices from some of public media’s most creative and innovative people. You’ll also be matched with an NPR mentor who will serve as your guide while you are here. By the end of the four days, you will have focused your idea and created an editorial blueprint for your project, so you can start making things as soon as you get home.

The workshop is run by the NPR Training team with support from the NPR Story Lab, an idea hub designed to generate new segments, create pilots for radio shows, launch new podcasts and introduce new voices to the network. We’re partnering with the Association of Independents in Radio (AIR) again to review applications from talented independent producers, as well as provide mentorships after the workshop.

We are looking for audio storytelling project ideas that …

  • Are in the early stages of conception — an idea with promise and some research to back it up, but still notional. If you’ve already launched a project, it’s too late for this workshop.
  • Have the potential to respond to a clear need from a well-defined audience (local, regional, national, affinity group, etc.)
  • Represent diverse topics, formats, locations and makers
  • Are distinct; stand out from existing public media content
  • Present opportunities to learn something about craft

Past workshop projects
May 2016
March 2017


For more details about eligibility, the application and the workshop, check out our frequently asked questions.


Scenes from the 2017 workshop

Serri Graslie was the Senior Digital Strategist on the NPR Training team.