Tag Archives: UK

Honouring Andrew Watson’s footballing legacy

The year 2022 will be remembered as a historic one for English football. The beloved Lionesses won their first major tournament in a dramatic Euro Cup final against Germany at Wembley. After 56 years of hurt, Sunday, 31 July 2022, marked the day that football finally came home. As a lifelong Arsenal fan who grew up idolising Ian Wright, I remember feeling immense pride as I watched history being made.

The country came together to celebrate the beautiful game — but for me, as character designer and illustrator, I am fascinated by the stories behind the big moments. So for me, this was a chance to reflect on the sacrifices that players from minority groups have been forced to make in order to play the game that they love. For example, many female players have had to maintain full-time jobs whilst pursuing their football career, often a side effect of sometimes disproportionate funding for the women’s game. And it wasn’t that long ago that players from minority ethnic backgrounds were largely excluded from the sport.

Andrew Watson was a Scottish footballer widely believed to be the first black footballer to play in the Football League and the first player of colour to play in an English Cup match. Born in 1856 in what is now Guyana, Andrew was one of the most influential footballers of his time, captaining Scotland and leading his team to historic victories over England and Wales. Balancing his business entrepreneurship with his football career, he played for both Scotland and England, typically in the full-back position.

When I was asked to create a Doodle dedicated to Andrew’s achievements, it felt like a dream come true. After reading about his incredible life, I decided to not only illustrate his career, but also the trajectory of those who have followed in his path. Coming so soon after the euphoric celebrations of the Lionesses’ victory, it was important to me to capture that connection in the Doodle — to demonstrate that one person’s contribution can spark a positive and lasting chain reaction. This is why I settled on the idea of incorporating other generations into the Doodle, and hence the original sketches depict Andrew himself with a football, proudly watching on as other generations follow in his footsteps.

A rough pencil sketch depicting six figures in a line running and jumping with footballs

My initial idea was to depict this chain reaction in the artwork, with Andrew proudly watching on as new generations play the beautiful game.

A detailed sketch in neutral colours detailing six figures of varying ages and genders playing football

The second sketch captures a greater level of detail and movement.

A colourful and vibrant illustration featuring animated characters playing football in front of a Google logo

The final Doodle introduces character into the concept, and brings Andrew’s story to life.

With the finished product, I wanted to capture the beauty of football: the pace, the excitement, the vibrancy and, most importantly, the fun. Each character has their own experience with the ball, in the same way that each football player has their own unique style and strength.

I feel very proud and humbled to have been chosen to create this Doodle, and sincerely hope that people feel it captures not only Andrew’s legacy, but the legacy of all who follow in his footsteps.

YouTube creators are boosting the UK’s brands and economy

‘Creativity’, ‘diversity’ and ‘the economy’ are becoming increasingly associated with one another. The findings from two landmark studies, launching today at YouTube Festival, demonstrate that they are strongly symbiotic.

We have always known that creators are at the core of YouTube’s success and the latestYouTube Impact report by Oxford Economics on the state of the creator economy, highlights the wider, significant economic impact of YouTube’s creative ecosystem in the UK. A second piece of research, Mirrors and Windows, conducted with MTM, explores identity and media choice in the UK and the role and responsibility of brands in improving authentic representation.

This year I celebrated my 15th year at Google and there are some key themes that have progressed significantly during my time here. The main is the growth in sheer reach – new audiences continue to come to us with 96% of online adults in the UK visiting YouTube at least once a month. As a platform that attracts nearly the whole of the UK to our creative content, it should be no surprise that Oxford Economics found that YouTube’s creative ecosystem contributed over £1.4billion to the UK’s GDP, with 80% of creative entrepreneurs agreeing that YouTube provides an opportunity to create content and earn money that they wouldn’t get from traditional media.

I hear from creators every day about how our open platform has lowered the barrier to entry for creatives from every corner of the UK, and of every background and demographic. Munya Chawawa, who hosted YouTube Festival, is testament to how YouTube has the power to launch life-changing careers and ensure audiences can find content that reflects the diversity of the UK today. The research reinforced these anecdotes, with 79% of Mirrors & Windows respondents saying that they believe YouTube represents a wide range of voices, people and perspectives, a sentiment that was shared by those who identify as LGBTQ+ and those identifying as Asian, Black, Mixed or multiple, or other ethnic groups. Across the UK, from Scotland to Yorkshire to the South West, users also agree that YouTube has the content that people in the UK love.

Image showing Munya Chawawa at the MOBO Awards, 2021

Munya Chawawa at the MOBO Awards, 2021

While we’ve gained a better understanding of the tremendous benefits that YouTube’s creative ecosystem provides to our economy, society, brands and culture, the agencies and advertisers MTM spoke to indicated that they sometimes still have apprehensions about their ability to speak about the issue of diverse representation without misstepping and facing scrutiny. Saying that, as YouTube continues to introduce new ways to support diverse creatives, it is becoming a powerful vehicle for brands on the road to more inclusive campaigns.

When fashion and beauty destination ASOS, were planning to tell young people that their brand is for people of all sizes, races and celebrates self expression, YouTube was there to connect them with a unique opportunity to amplify this message. ASOS’ partnership with MOBO – a global brand dedicated to celebrating and championing Black culture and music – was a good example of how authentic and inclusive marketing equals reach and brand results, with ASOS’ pre-roll ads reaching almost three million people watching the Awards and associated music content on YouTube alone. The partnership, which also included ASOS sponsoring the Awards’ Best Newcomer category, not only demonstrated YouTube’s ability as a driver of cultural moments, but also its ability to bring brands closer to diverse audiences, deliver strong brand metrics, and support the creative development and distribution of representative content.

While we’ve known this for a while, the insights released today demonstrate that there’s an urgent need for cultural fluency – where brands show not just a familiarity with different cultures but an ability to communicate effectively in different contexts and be able to change and adapt as much as our platform and its audiences are.

I am so excited to continue to work with brands to help them thrive on this open and constantly evolving platform, where engaging with creative talent, ideas and audiences means direct investment in the UK economy, helping to maintain the UK’s position as a global leader in the creative industry.

Continued investment in measures to help fight financial fraud in the UK

In recent years, scammers continue to deploy new fraudulent practices in order to take advantage of people. According to UK Finance’s latest figures, over £1.3 billion was stolen through fraud in 2021, up from £1.26 billion the year before.

To combat this concerning trend, Google continues to invest in teams, new policies and better enforcement capabilities. In 2021, we blocked or removed 58.9 million financial services bad ads globally to protect the advertising ecosystem.

Today, we are announcing a significant additional measure to protect both consumers and legitimate advertisers in the UK. The Google Ads Financial Products and Services policy will be updated to require that all advertisers be FCA (Financial Conduct Authority) authorised for debt adjusting and debt counselling in order to show debt services advertisements starting from 6 December 2022. Insolvency practitioners, including those licensed by a recognized professional body, will no longer be allowed to advertise for these services. Advertisers must successfully complete the updated verification process by the time enforcement begins on 16 January 2023. The policy update also allows advertisers that are included on the FCA Financial Services Register as ‘exempt professional firms’ or recognised investment exchanges to be verified as UK FCA-authorised advertisers.

Our financial services certification policy, launched initially in 2021, has led to a pronounced decline in reports of ads promoting financial scams, and has subsequently been rolled out across Google platforms in Australia, Singapore, Taiwan, Indonesia, India, Portugal, Brazil, France, Spain and Germany. A problem of this scale needs cross-industry effort, so we are pleased to see other tech companies now commit to introducing similar policies in the UK.

Today’s announcement builds on longstanding and robust financial products and services policies and engagement with industry in order to deliver a safer experience for users, publishers and advertisers.

Further collaborative industry progress to date

In addition to ongoing policy reviews and updates, we continue to adapt and collaborate with industry and government organisations to tackle these evolving tactics by scammers. Last year, Google was the first major technology company to join Stop Scams UK, an industry-led collaboration of responsible businesses from across the banking, telecoms and technology sectors who have come together to develop best practices to stop scams at the source.

We also pledged $5 million in advertising credits to support public awareness campaigns in the UK, helping to ensure that consumers are better informed about how to spot the tactics of scammers both online and offline. We encourage businesses and consumers to refer to industry resources from trusted sources and Google partners including Stop Scams, UK Finance’s ‘Take 5’ campaign and the Advertising Standards Authority to stay up to date with the latest solutions we can all adopt to operate safely online.

Bite-size skills training for Brits short on time

Digital skills are a key part of many jobs and are crucial for helping small businesses grow. But with the hustle of daily life, many of us struggle to find the time to learn valuable new skills that could help with landing a new job, earning more money or growing a business.

That’s why we’ve asked for advice from four people who’ve done this before: presenter and former footballer Ian Wright, entrepreneur and Dragon’s Den investor Steven Bartlett, finance professional turned YouTuber Patricia Bright, and founder of notonthehighstreet.co.uk Holly Tucker. Based on their experiences with switching careers or starting a business by learning a new skill, they’ve helped us create Skills to Go, a free, bitesize digital skills training programme.

Image shows man in front of bus with advice about keeping your CV brief overlaid

You can complete the short training sessions, which range from five to 20 minutes, as and when you have time — while commuting, over a coffee break or in between appointments. Our Skills to Go site suggests relevant topics — including CV writing, changing careers and growing a business online — based on how much time you have to spare.

We’ve built this programme in response to new data from YouGov that reveals that lack of time is the number one barrier stopping people from learning skills that could take their careers and businesses to the next level. And it’s a very real need: in the UK, more than 90% of people are online, yet fewer than half of businesses have a website. Businesses struggle to recruit people with digital skills; the digital skills gap accounts for 30% of unfilled vacancies, and costs the UK economy £63 billion per year.

Our new Skills to Go campaign is just one of the ways that we’re working to help address the nation’s skills shortage. Since launching our first digital skills training programme in Leeds in 2015, we’ve visited more than 500 locations up and down the country, and have provided digital skills training to more than 800,000 people in the UK. We offer individuals and business owners opportunities to, for example, take part in one-to-one mentoring sessions or learn about digital marketing to help them advance their careers or boost their businesses. This year, we’re visiting more than 30 locations, such as Newport and Cambridgeshire, to help people learn new skills and get Britain growing.

Image showing man sitting at a table with advice overlaid about how 66% of shopping is done on mobile, so websites should be built for speed.

Of course, we can’t do this alone. Earlier this year, alongside a number of top UK employers including the BBC, BT Group, Deloitte, John Lewis Partnership and NatWest, we announced our Employer Consortium, which recognises Google Career Certificates when recruiting for much-needed tech roles, providing an accessible path for Brits into high-growth, well-paid tech jobs.

Everyone should have the opportunity to gain digital skills regardless of their location, race, age, gender or education level. That's why we’re supporting Good Things Foundation’s work with 1,500 community organisations across the UK, which supports up to 25,000 people from underrepresented communities to get online and learn essential digital skills.

These are all part of our efforts to make it easier than ever for you to gain new skills, wherever you’re at in your career. So the next time you have a spare five minutes, search ‘Google Skills Training’ to learn from business experts like Stephen, Holly and Patricia and boost your business or career.

These Lionesses have byte – could analytics help them lift the trophy?

On Sunday, England will face Germany in the final act of this summer’s tournament—one that has pitted the top teams from across Europe against one another, and inspired a generation.

It will take grit, determination and a stunning backheel here or there for England to win. But technology plays a part too. The Football Association’s partnership with Google Cloud has been a vital part of the picture for the lead up to the competition, giving coaches and performance staff access to data and processing muscle that help it select the best squad available at any one time.

The FA’s Player Performance System (PPS) is a central component of Helix—an application and development suite developed by The FA. Helix has been hosted on Google Cloud for the last five years and is used by the Technical Directorate staff associated with both the England women’s and men’s football teams. It provides them with secure access to databases, processes, functions, and compute resources that analyse large volumes of data. It also integrates with visualisation tools to give coaches and performance staff multiple views of data that provides unique insightscustomised to end users’ requirements.

This data can include anything from player profiles, to scouting reports, to medical information, to club and international fixtures and results. It also brings in research from metrics pulled from wearable devices, which track players’ training volume and intensity, to allow coaches to better manage their workloads. Coaches also have access to players’ sleep, nutrition, recovery, and mental health data.

“What it allows our users to do is pull together disparate information that they may not be used to seeing side-by-side. This helps us to generate new insights, and hopefully give us an edge when it comes to competitions,” said Craig Donald, CIO at The FA.

Helix provides multi-dimensional insight

Helix tracks more than 3,500 professional footballers and stores more than 22 million player data points collected from competitive games and training sessions. The platform relies on various Google Cloud tools, glued together by a complex microservice system, which is used to update the data being collected, analysed, and stored. Google Cloud Storage is also used to host The FA’s video archives of competitive games. As many as 400 games a day make their way into The FA database, each one creating up to a 5GB file size and 600MB of video tracking data.

Image of three Lioness football players with the middle one holding a football.  Data points are circled in yellow, red and blue howcasing how Google Cloud technology is used to look at performance.

This means the FA has faster, more convenient access to data, plus greater insight into player and team performance, which can aid in both the selection and choice of tactics in any given fixture. The additional power and capacity of the GCP hosting infrastructure helps The FA quickly and cost effectively scale up its analytics capabilities to handle additional data sets during forthcoming competitions.

It often seems in football that everybody has their own idea of the best players to pick and the tactics to adopt. But the combination of granular data metrics and cloud architecture deployed by The FA and Google Cloud might actually give a genuine expert the knowledge to back up those opinions.

But does it mean the Lionesses will win on Sunday? Tune in to find out.

Google News Showcase continues to grow in the UK

At the beginning of last year, we brought Google News Showcase, our product experience and licensing programme for news publishers, to the U.K. It’s designed to help publishers engage more deeply with their readers – and to help readers find, follow and support the news organisations covering the issues that matter to them. We continue to learn, update and expand the product, and we’ve seen strong, steady numbers – both in terms of the number of publishers signing on for the product in the UK, and how readers are interacting with the content.

More publishers join News Showcase in the UK

We’ve negotiated and signed deals with almost 240 news titles in the U.K. since launching News Showcase. The most recent is The Guardian, building on our longstanding work together on digital innovation for the future of news.

Keith Underwood, CEO of The Guardian, commented: “We are pleased to have expanded our partnership with Google to make our journalism available in digital, video and other formats in ways that will engage even wider audiences. This new deal supports further investment in journalism and will bring a new audience back to our sites where we can build deeper relationships of enduring value.”

Local news publishers make up 93% of the titles who’ve signed up to News Showcase in the U.K. to curate news in new ways and deepen their engagement with online audiences. These include Grantham Journal, NationalWorld.com, Reach’s Belfast Live and Clear Sky’s North Devon Gazette.

As Mark Thompson, Editor of National World, says: "We believe it is vital that our stories, videos and images are given the value they deserve so that we can produce ever more insightful, reliable and relevant journalism for audiences all over the UK. News Showcase has enabled our teams based in England, Scotland and Northern Ireland to display their impressive work on a great platform and in a meaningful way.”

Simon Bax, CEO of Clear Sky, also tells us: "Joining the Google News Showcase has had a dramatic and immediate effect as it has enabled us to hire an additional journalist, has elevated our standing within the community and has increased the team's self-assurance."

We recently announced that we’re making it easier to find local publishers in Google News Showcase by bringing their panels into the local section of Google News. Through our partnerships with local news publishers in the U.K., we’ve seen first-hand how local news is an essential way for readers to connect to their communities and ensure they get the news that impacts their day-to-day lives.

Supporting publishers and journalists in the UK

News Showcase is one element of our broader investment in news and journalism in the U.K. We spent more than $18 million on training, partnerships and programming with news organisations and other news industry partners between 2018 to 2020, and we’ve trained 16,500 journalists and journalism students since 2015.

We’re proud to fund the Journalism AI fellowship, organised by the media think-tank Polis at the London School of Economics, and to support organisations like Headlines Network who are providing essential mental health resources for journalists in England and Wales. We’re continuing our support for the University of Central Lancashire's Journalism innovation and Leadership (JIL) Programme for a third year and recently announced the Innovation Challenge for Europe, where small and medium-sized news organisations can apply for funding to stimulate innovation in news.

We’re dedicated to continuing our contribution to and collaboration with the news ecosystem, supporting the open web and continuing to provide access to information in the UK and elsewhere.

A milestone for King’s Cross: a local innovation hub

Over the last few years, King’s Cross has truly transformed, becoming a thriving hub of innovation and creativity. The transformation is a sign of the UK’s strengths, with its incredible local talent and strong history of leading technological and scientific progress. These strengths inspired us to invest here in King's Cross, in one of our most ambitious developments to date.

Today, together with local MP, Keir Starmer, Mayor of London Sadiq Khan, leader of Camden Council Georgia Gould, and our building partners, we celebrated a major milestone in the construction of our new King’s Cross office – and in our long-standing commitment to the UK – as we placed the final beam on our new development.

Keir Starmer, Leader of the Labour Party and MP for Holborn and St Pancras said:

“It’s fantastic to attend not only as the leader of the Labour Party and local MP but as a proud local resident of more than 25 years. Congratulations to Google on your magnificent new building, and for all it represents – a seizing of opportunity, harnessing of talent, the creation of good, sustainable jobs and an immense contribution to our community. You’re showing what can be achieved when forward looking local government partners with the ingenuity of the private sector.”

We have long believed that creativity is spurred by environments that promote connection and wellbeing. This is more important than ever as we adapt to a future of flexible, hybrid working. Our new King’s Cross building will be equipped with new workplace technologies to help global and remote teams collaborate more effectively, build relationships, learn from colleagues and dream up new ways to solve complex challenges.

It will also bea place for community and connection thanks to the ground floor retail and community spaces, which are being curated with — and for — the local community. In the coming weeks, in partnership with more than 30 youth organisations in Camden, we’re excited to open our doors to 500 local young people for a week of taster sessions to inspire school students and job seekers with careers in technology, as well as more than 100 local work experience students.

Innovation extends to the design of the building itself, which is playing an important role in helping us to achieve our goal of going carbon free by 2030. We’re pioneering new technologies that will make our King’s Cross office our most ambitious smart building to date, including a system of 13,500 interconnected devices that will work together to improve energy efficiency in real time.

While the doors of our new King’s Cross development won’t open until 2024, incredible work is already underway nearby. The neighbourhood is home to thousands of our engineers working on products like Android, Wear OS, Search and Google Business Profiles, which are used the world over. In fact, many of the team behind some of our newest products – to be released later this year – are based right here in King’s Cross. We look forward to growing these teams and being a part of the local community’s future growth and development.

Sadiq Khan, London Mayor signing a whiteboard

Mayor of London, Sadiq Khan

Mayor of London, Sadiq Khan commented:

“London has built a reputation as a world leader in technology and innovation, so I’m delighted to see Google reaffirming its commitment to London with the first wholly owned and designed Google building outside of the United States. I was lucky enough to be present for the original ground-breaking at this site back in 2017. So, it’s incredible to see the progress that’s been made since then on this hugely ambitious project.

"My ambition, as Mayor, is to build a better London for everyone – one that is fairer, greener and more prosperous for all. And this magnificent building is a shining example of confidence in our city.”

Helping local journalism in the UK thrive online

Local news is at the heart of all communities – even in big cities. It’s often said London is a ‘city of villages’ and as someone who has grown up, studied and worked in different parts of the capital, I’ve always learnt a lot about my various neighbourhoods through the lens of the local newspaper. From the ‘Surrey Comet’ in Kingston, to the ‘Ham & High’ in Haringey, local journalism shines a light on issues as diverse as local government, culture and important new developments.

Today, thanks to the internet, readers can choose from an incredible array of news sources online. Anyone with a passion can set up a specialist blog and find a following. This is great news for creators and readers like me with a niche interest in anything from arts to architecture. But the online environment and changing audience habits have disrupted traditional business models. Today, local papers and news sites have to work harder than ever to capture – and monetise – audiences' attention with news they’ll enjoy.

One way we support local publishers to meet this challenge is by driving online audiences to their journalism via Google News and Search. In 2021, we sent more than 2.4 billion organic clicks to local news publications in the UK from global users on Google Search and News. A 2019 study by Deloitte in Europe valued each visit between €0.04-0.06 —which equates to more than £84 million in value going to British local news publications from Google traffic alone.

We’ve been working to give local news greater prominence on Google Search and News in recent years, and our latest changes to Google News will help readers discover local content even more easily.

Local publishers often tell us they want to strengthen their digital skills and build on their expertise to further cut through to online audiences. That’s why with the Google News Initiative we are focused on helping local journalism to thrive. We partner with local publishers on new products like Google News Showcase, or the digital portal we developed with the NMA to protect revenue from public notices. On partnerships that support experimentation and innovation in new sustainable business models, and on training to upskill journalists with digital tools and techniques. Our training includes digital verification to tackle misinformation, data journalism and tools that strengthen investigative journalism.

Many local publishers across the UK are already innovating with new digital strategies to pull in new readers and revenues. Today we’re announcing three new programmes that build on this long standing work, and there is more to come.

Supporting local publishers with subscriptions

To be successful in the long term, publishers must have a sustainable digital revenue model. As part of our Digital Growth Programme, we partnered with the NMA and FT Strategies to help 12 local publishers develop the expertise they need to build a blueprint for the future. Local partners like Barnsley Chronicle, Rotherham Advertiser, and Iliffe Media took part, and it’s been great to hear the response:

Jeremy Spooner at the Maidenhead Advertiser said: “The extremely high level of expertise delivered by the FT Strategies team, coupled with their access to insights on how to grow digital subscription revenue would not have been accessible by Baylis Media Ltd, had it not been funded by Google News Initiative. The programme has given the team the confidence to accelerate its Digital Subscription Strategy with a clear methodology now in place and a challenge goal set. Without doubt the programme has provided a significant boost to the Digital Revenue Strategy.”

Today, we’re announcing that we’re expanding the programme for another 12 months in response to feedback from the publishers involved.

A new nationwide training partnership with the National Union of Journalists

As a former journalist, I can begin to understand the pressure to stay across a range of new tools. The team I lead has trained 16,500 UK journalists and journalism students since 2015, with a focus on providing workshops outside of London.

Our new partnership with the National Union of Journalists will build on these efforts, and focus on helping local journalists across the UK and Ireland develop both their journalism and leadership capabilities. They’ll deliver 13 in-person workshops nationwide, and 30 virtual digital skills workshops to ensure the training is fully accessible to all.

Michelle Stanistreet, NUJ general secretary said: “This partnership is an opportunity to improve the digital skills of our members, in particular by using technology to verify the authenticity and accuracy of images, videos and reports on social media and elsewhere online – an essential skill for a modern and ethical journalist. The training will also help mid-career members to progress towards leadership roles, with a particular emphasis on groups under-represented within the industry’s management – women, black and minority ethic, disabled and working class journalists.”

Partnering with PA Media on digital skills

Ensuring training programmes reach groups that are underrepresented in journalism is important if UK newsrooms are to better reflect the communities they serve. That's why we’re proud to sponsor the NCTJ’s Journalism Diversity Fund and to have helped support 200 aspiring journalists from diverse backgrounds through their training and into local newsrooms such as WalesOnline, Barnsley Chronicle and Newcastle World.

Today we’re launching a new partnership with PA Media to offer more targeted support for underrepresented groups across two key areas: digital skills and misinformation. First, we’re sponsoring 25 places on PA Media's four-week summer school for students from underrepresented backgrounds, with a particular focus on reaching students in Westminster and Camden – as well as a series of training festivals for 500 journalists. Secondly, we’re supporting PA Media to develop a new training curriculum to help journalists tackle misinformation as part of their daily news gathering processes.

Alongside these partnerships, we provide direct funding to support innovation in local news via the GNI innovation Challenge for Europe, our YouTube Creator Programme for Independent Journalists and our newly announced Global News Equity Fund.

We’re excited to see the impact these news projects have and to keep working with our local partners to help ensure a vibrant future for local British journalism.

Helping local journalism in the UK thrive online

Local news is at the heart of all communities – even in big cities. It’s often said London is a ‘city of villages’ and as someone who has grown up, studied and worked in different parts of the capital, I’ve always learnt a lot about my various neighbourhoods through the lens of the local newspaper. From the ‘Surrey Comet’ in Kingston, to the ‘Ham & High’ in Haringey, local journalism shines a light on issues as diverse as local government, culture and important new developments.

Today, thanks to the internet, readers can choose from an incredible array of news sources online. Anyone with a passion can set up a specialist blog and find a following. This is great news for creators and readers like me with a niche interest in anything from arts to architecture. But the online environment and changing audience habits have disrupted traditional business models. Today, local papers and news sites have to work harder than ever to capture – and monetise – audiences' attention with news they’ll enjoy.

One way we support local publishers to meet this challenge is by driving online audiences to their journalism via Google News and Search. In 2021, we sent more than 2.4 billion organic clicks to local news publications in the UK from global users on Google Search and News. A 2019 study by Deloitte in Europe valued each visit between €0.04-0.06 —which equates to more than £84 million in value going to British local news publications from Google traffic alone.

We’ve been working to give local news greater prominence on Google Search and News in recent years, and our latest changes to Google News will help readers discover local content even more easily.

Local publishers often tell us they want to strengthen their digital skills and build on their expertise to further cut through to online audiences. That’s why with the Google News Initiative we are focused on helping local journalism to thrive. We partner with local publishers on new products like Google News Showcase, or the digital portal we developed with the NMA to protect revenue from public notices. On partnerships that support experimentation and innovation in new sustainable business models, and on training to upskill journalists with digital tools and techniques. Our training includes digital verification to tackle misinformation, data journalism and tools that strengthen investigative journalism.

Many local publishers across the UK are already innovating with new digital strategies to pull in new readers and revenues. Today we’re announcing three new programmes that build on this long standing work, and there is more to come.

Supporting local publishers with subscriptions

To be successful in the long term, publishers must have a sustainable digital revenue model. As part of our Digital Growth Programme, we partnered with the NMA and FT Strategies to help 12 local publishers develop the expertise they need to build a blueprint for the future. Local partners like Barnsley Chronicle, Rotherham Advertiser, and Iliffe Media took part, and it’s been great to hear the response:

Jeremy Spooner at the Maidenhead Advertiser said: “The extremely high level of expertise delivered by the FT Strategies team, coupled with their access to insights on how to grow digital subscription revenue would not have been accessible by Baylis Media Ltd, had it not been funded by Google News Initiative. The programme has given the team the confidence to accelerate its Digital Subscription Strategy with a clear methodology now in place and a challenge goal set. Without doubt the programme has provided a significant boost to the Digital Revenue Strategy.”

Today, we’re announcing that we’re expanding the programme for another 12 months in response to feedback from the publishers involved.

A new nationwide training partnership with the National Union of Journalists

As a former journalist, I can begin to understand the pressure to stay across a range of new tools. The team I lead has trained 16,500 UK journalists and journalism students since 2015, with a focus on providing workshops outside of London.

Our new partnership with the National Union of Journalists will build on these efforts, and focus on helping local journalists across the UK and Ireland develop both their journalism and leadership capabilities. They’ll deliver 13 in-person workshops nationwide, and 30 virtual digital skills workshops to ensure the training is fully accessible to all.

Michelle Stanistreet, NUJ general secretary said: “This partnership is an opportunity to improve the digital skills of our members, in particular by using technology to verify the authenticity and accuracy of images, videos and reports on social media and elsewhere online – an essential skill for a modern and ethical journalist. The training will also help mid-career members to progress towards leadership roles, with a particular emphasis on groups under-represented within the industry’s management – women, black and minority ethic, disabled and working class journalists.”

Partnering with PA Media on digital skills

Ensuring training programmes reach groups that are underrepresented in journalism is important if UK newsrooms are to better reflect the communities they serve. That's why we’re proud to sponsor the NCTJ’s Journalism Diversity Fund and to have helped support 200 aspiring journalists from diverse backgrounds through their training and into local newsrooms such as WalesOnline, Barnsley Chronicle and Newcastle World.

Today we’re launching a new partnership with PA Media to offer more targeted support for underrepresented groups across two key areas: digital skills and misinformation. First, we’re sponsoring 25 places on PA Media's four-week summer school for students from underrepresented backgrounds, with a particular focus on reaching students in Westminster and Camden – as well as a series of training festivals for 500 journalists. Secondly, we’re supporting PA Media to develop a new training curriculum to help journalists tackle misinformation as part of their daily news gathering processes.

Alongside these partnerships, we provide direct funding to support innovation in local news via the GNI innovation Challenge for Europe, our YouTube Creator Programme for Independent Journalists and our newly announced Global News Equity Fund.

We’re excited to see the impact these news projects have and to keep working with our local partners to help ensure a vibrant future for local British journalism.