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Doc Society

Doc Society brings people together to unleash the transformational power of independent documentary film.

© Lauren Colchamiro

Doc Society works with filmmakers and journalists in over 37 countries to support great, impactful documentary films and create a more connected and sustainable global media ecosystem.

A documentary film, however beautifully produced, will rarely create meaningful change without a thoughtful strategy for impact. Doc Society’s programs aim to support storytellers to think more broadly and strategically about how to wield their story for social impact. Through its Good Pitch program, for example, documentary filmmakers pitch their stories to a roomful of potential funders and coalition partners, creating space for new partnerships and collaborations. To date, Good Pitch has raised more than $17 million in new funding for 134 film projects from 60 countries and connected those filmmakers with countless new advocacy partners. 

A significant organizational shift came a few years ago, when in recognition of the urgency of the climate crisis, Doc Society decided to make climate justice a central pillar of its work—the first time the organization had singled out a particular area of focus for its impact programs. In its first foray into climate storytelling, Doc Society partnered with the former president of Ireland and UN High Commissioner on Human Rights, Mary Robinson, and an Irish-born, New York-based comedian, Maeve Higgins, to produce a feminist climate podcast, “Mothers of Invention.” The Compton Foundation provided seed funding, Mary provided the expertise, and Maeve provided the jokes.

In the time since, Doc Society has created a grantmaking fund and a number of new programs designed to support storytellers and creators across many kinds of media, not just documentary film, who are striving to reshape the conversation about climate change and advance climate solutions. Learn more about Doc Society’s inaugural Climate Story Lab in the video below. 

Recent grant history

YearProjectGrant Award
2020New Rules of Impact project$15,000
2020General Support$150,000 over 3 years
2019General Support$50,000
2018Mothers of Invention$50,000
2018General Support$50,000
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