Global Short Docs Forum 2019 took place in Kyiv, Ukraine as part of Docudays UA Film Festival.

Through masterclasses and group work, the sessions over the first three days created a supportive environment for filmmakers to discuss, develop and rework their pitches, leading up to the final day of one-to-one meetings with representatives from digital platforms.

The digital platforms which attended in 2019 were AJ ShortsCurrent TimeThe GuardianHromadskeLUSHVice and Zaborona.

Filmmakers 2019


Latvia | Filming in Estonia


UK | Filming in Turkey






Colombia / USA




UK | Filming in Pakistan




Sweden | Filming in Greece






UK | Filming in Jordan


South Africa







Ragnhild Nøst Bergem

Ragnhild is a Norwegian filmmaker and cinematographer. She has a distinct and brave voice in storytelling, and her intimate approach to the vulnerable characters in her films makes them open up and share the unspoken. Her film “Remember me?” was selected at IDFA’s student documentaries in 2016 and was part of the National Art Exhibition in Norway in 2017. It’s a strong portrait of young people who suffer from dementia, and their next of kin. Bergem’s film brings the audience closer to people who normally remain silent.

Ismael Egui Saad

Ismael is a psychologist and a film director, and founder of Icaro Films. He creates digital content for online platforms, and has a strong interest in mixing documentary filmmaking with psychology, to achieve intimate and deep testimonies. He explores queer culture, its notions of body, community and the self. He was awarded Best Web Series in Popayan Short Film Festival 2015, first place for Audiovisual Piece in the Expresarte 2016 Festival; and Best Short Film, Best Director and Best Script in the 48h film project Bogotá 2016, achieving a special exhibition at Festival de Cannes 2017.

Jason Hanasik

Jason has a Master of Journalism from UC Berkeley’s Graduate School of Journalism, and an MFA from California College of the Arts. He is currently a fellow at SFFILM’s FilmHouse where he is developing a series of short docs. Jason’s artwork appeared at the Smithsonian’s National Portrait Gallery and other galleries around the world. His first monograph, “I slowly watched him disappear” is in collection of the Metropolitan Museum of Art and Stanford University. Jason’s short docs are generally character driven films which explore how seemingly ordinary individuals are living extraordinary, complex lives.

Zeynep Guzel

Zeynep is currently based in Istanbul and manages the New Film Fund since its foundation in 2015. She received her BA in Film and Television and her MA in Sociology, worked as a film tutor as well as a screenwriter, director’s assistant and consequently as a producer in film and media productions. She produced the feature length documentary “Beginnings” directed by Somnur Vardar in 2013 and is working on her debut documentary film “Come Rain or Shine”.

Elena Horn

Elena is an emerging filmmaker from Germany who graduated in Documentary Practice from Brunel University London. She is working as a story producer for ARTE, ARD, RTL and SPIEGEL TV Wissen. Elena’s films focus on questions around education, working culture, love and ethnic conflict employing visual inspirations from the world of music and dance. As a director, Elena is a fellow of the Logan Non-Fiction Program in New York. Together with Alessandro Leonardi, she was selected for the BBC Fresh Award for her short documentary “Generation in Transit”.

Saila Huusko

Saila is a documentary filmmaker and multimedia journalist. She graduated from the Columbia Journalism School, and her work has appeared in The Guardian, Narratively, and GlobalPost. She worked in several conflict and post-conflict areas as an in-house filmmaker for Crisis Management Initiative. Her first feature documentary, Moroni For President, is on the festival circuit with a later public broadcast in the US. As a filmmaker, she gravitates towards stories about people who fight the odds and/or immerse themselves in something the rest of the world doesn’t seem to understand.

Amit Madheshiya

Amit is an award winning, internationally acclaimed photographer and filmmaker based in Mumbai. His photographs on the Travelling Cinemas in India won the World Press Photo, World Photography Award and Grand Prize at the Humanity Photo Awards. His film “The Cinema Travellers”, co-directed with Shirley Abraham, premiered as an Official Selection at Cannes Film Festival 2016, to a standing ovation, and won 18 awards. Amit’s work is supported by the Sundance Institute, MacArthur Foundation, Goethe Institut India, India Foundation for the Arts, Arts Council England, and the University of Heidelberg.

Peter Okojie

Born in the Edo State of Nigeria, Peter began his journey through life fascinated by filmmaking. He studied Cinematography at The Pencil Film and Television Institute, with a concentration in videography/documentary filmmaking. He later received a degree in Business from Lagos State Polytechnics. Peter’s love for filmmaking, particularly documentaries, continues to propel his passion for storytelling. He was one of the 10 people representing Nigeria at aKoma’s 2017 Amplify Fellowship for Africa’s storytellers and content creators. Peter works as a Director of Photography in the film industry in Lagos, throughout the continent of Africa and overseas.

Anders Palm Olesen

Anders holds a BA in Political Science and is currently completing his MA in Digital Journalism at Goldsmiths. He’s been working on documentaries for television since 2015, when he sailed around the world filming and producing the series; “Towards Distant Shores” for Danish TV2. He recently co-directed and filmed the award-winning documentary, “Manila High – Life in Company with Death”. Next to his studies, he is freelancing on various documentary projects and finishing a feature documentary with a Danish director, filming in Moscow, St. Petersburg, Kiev and the UK. From Summer ’18 he will be based out of Beirut.

Hanz Rippe

Based in Bogota, Hanz is a Colombian filmmaker and photographer devoted to the production of documentary images and stories. He’s been working with indigenous, peasant and Afro-Colombian communities for over 7 years. He has a deep interest in learning and nurturing his knowledge to take on new projects, adopting new narrative skills to keep on telling stories throughout the Colombian and Latin-American territory. He has won documentary photography awards in Colombian contests, and he is in search of strategies and communication tools to generate long-term projects with multimedia platforms.

Nancy Roberts

Nancy has lived in Japan for eight years, during which she has worked for the United Nations and numerous non-governmental organizations. She recently spent time in Berlin, filming her documentary “The Little Girl and the House” —the story of one woman’s struggle to prevent her apartment block from being bought by investors. Nancy has filmed and photographed in 15 countries. She currently lives and works in Tokyo, Japan.

Mohamed Shalaby

Mohamed is a filmmaker currently living in Turkey, finishing two BA degrees in Film & TV and Motion Design. He did a short term study in Kent University in Film Studies. Mohamed has worked on various projects and sets for TV shows, short films, documentaries, and music videos, and produced his own projects. He currently works as a director, writer, editor and cinematographer, and he is a strong believer of the guerrilla filmmaking style.

Annabella Stieren

Annabella is a multimedia journalist and filmmaker from Berlin with a background in Politics and Psychology. She has lived and worked as a journalist in Europe and the Middle East mostly reporting about conflict, politics, migration, human rights and global economy. She has a passion for directing short films and creative documentaries and likes to explore new forms of storytelling. Her work was featured in Der Spiegel, Euronews, CCTV, NRT, stern, ZDF and 3SAT. Her latest documentary “From Kurdistan with Love” premiered at IDFA in 2017.

Angelos Tsaousis

Angelos has twelve years of experience in the audiovisual sector, with a postgraduate degree in Communication Studies and a specialisation in documentary filmmaking. Since 2011, he’s been mainly producing/directing creative documentaries with an international potential. His main objective is to explore the potential of documentary form as a social impact tool. He participated at first edition of Emerging Producers at IDFF Jihlava, and he is spearheading DocRepublic – a documentary hub where digital storytellers and public dialogue will be inspired. Angelos is a Fulbright Artist Scholar (2016/2017) and an x-fellow at SFFS’s Filmhouse (2017) where he developed his current documentary film Far.Go.Bots.

Sein Lyan Tun

Sein is an international award winning filmmaker from Myanmar. His documentary “Unsilent Potato” is well recognized in Myanmar and Southeast Asia, and he’s an alumni of “Talents Tokyo” 2016. He is focusing on making documentaries and short films about young people, women, education, child labour and human trafficking. Currently, he is working on his documentary “For Me and Others Like Me” which won “Docs Spirit Award” from Docs Port INCHEON in 2016, and Hoso Bunka Foundation Prize in 2017 at Japan Prize.

Nicholas Wambugu

Nicholas is a director, producer, drone pilot, and writer at Folklore Films. Since 2015, he’s directed 10 short films in different regions of Italy. Nicholas has also been writing and directing an ongoing feature documentary about cycling in Kenya. His first short film “All-In” won Best Production in diaspora at the Kalasha International Awards in 2015. In 2017 he filmed 150 testimonial/TvC/short documentaries for the President of Kenya during the election campaign period. He was the head Aerial Cinematographer for the short film “Watu Wote”, which was nominated for the Oscars 2018 for Best Live Short Film.

Simon Ardizzone

Simon is a documentary editor, producer and director living in London. Simon graduated as an editor from the National Film and Television School in England. For twenty years he has worked on long and short-form projects for all the major UK broadcasters, as well as BBC Arabic, Al Jazeera, HBO, A&E, Discovery and National Geographic. Genres range from crime drama-documentary to investigative journalism, and from lifestyle programming to observational documentary. In 2003, Simon received a BAFTA nomination for editing and in 2007, Simon was nominated for an Emmy award in Investigative Journalism for Hacking Democracy, a feature-length documentary that proved votes could be stolen from American voting machines. Simon is currently working on a follow-up.

Kashaf Chaudhry

Kashaf has 20 years experience in creating engaging, high quality content. As a filmmaker he directed the Real Da Vinci Code, one of the highest ever-rating factual programmes on Channel 4. He would later return to the channel as a commissioner responsible for Time Team, the most successful history brand on television. He took that experience on to Discovery where he worked across the EMEA region, developing new channels and commissioning award winning short form content. His love of international content led him to Al Jazeera English, where he commissioned and produced a range of series with a particular focus on digital distribution. As the executive producer at Breakthrough Media, Kashaf is responsible for the development and production of all film content, across all digital platforms. He works with strategy and digital insights to continuously evolve the content, whether it’s an Instagram film or an interactive documentary.

Paul Sapin

Paul has made films for broadcasters in the UK, USA and Europe as well as for Al Jazeera English. Paul’s work Made In Bangladesh about the clothing factory disasters won the Peabody Award and an Emmy nomination. He won the Royal Television Society award for his BBC film Rivals for Paradise about the war between the Vatican and the Soviet Union. In So Close So Far Away, Paul investigated an event from the Vietnam War that received the Cine Golden Eagle and the International Academy of Visual Arts Award for Best Documentary. His most recent film A Very Sicilian Justice won Best Documentary Short in the 2017 Manchester International Film Festival.

Dominique Young

Dominique is an Executive Producer in international documentary and factual programming. For many years she was Senior Commissioning Producer for the Witness, the observational documentary strand on Al Jazeera English, executive producing programming from Africa and the Middle East with an emphasis on developing young, regional documentary makers. She was also International Executive Producer at Zinc Network, a production and communications company specialising in social change campaigns, overseeing all international filmed output for online platforms.

Sarah Brown

Sarah is training and news literacy manager, EMEA region for the Facebook media partnerships team. She has been at Facebook for three years and prior to that spent 15 years working in digital and social media for newsrooms around the world such as the BBC, Al Jazeera and CNN, working on user generated content, social and digital media. She is based in London.

Adam Gee

Adam specialises in social video/short form video. He set up the factual Short Form Video service on All4, Channel 4’s online player – he was a Commissioning Editor at Channel 4 for 13 years (of Multiplatform TV and Online Video). He is the first Commissioning Editor of original programming at Little Dot Studios, commissioning documentaries for ‘Real Stories’ channel. Adam has won over 80 international awards for his productions, including four BAFTAs, an Emmy and the Grand Award of the New York International Film Festival. He is a voting member of BAFTA and the European Film Academy.


Emily has been commissioning short documentaries on a range of pressing
social justice and human rights issues from established and emerging independent producers around the globe for AJ+ since 2014. She also produces in-house docs for the network with correspondents Dena Takruri and Ahmed Shihab-Eldin. Prior to AJ+, she produced long-form television documentaries for Bloomberg TV, CNBC, CBS and ABC in the US. She began her career as a news and current affairs radio produc- er with the Canadian Broadcasting Corporation.


Rosie is the Digital Documentaries Producer for BBC Arabic, and the founder of Mediadante; an award-winning independent production company making lms about the Middle East region for a global audience. She is producer of the multi award-winning The Workers Cup that premiered on the opening night of Sundance 2017. The International Emmy-award winning Escape from Isis which she developed for Channel 4 and PBS was referenced by the UK Prime Minister in a key speech and shown to the U.S. Congress. She exec produced a CINE Golden Eagle winning series following the rst Saudi woman up Everest, and she is the author of the award-winning book How to Avoid Being Killed in a War Zone (Bloomsbury, 2011).


Ravin is an Executive Producer with BBC News and Digital Current Affairs. He commissions short and long form content for BBC Stories, BBC Like That, and various other strands that target underserved audiences. He has been a journalist for over 8 years, leading on digital innovation in storytelling, and worked for a number of BBC News programmes. Ravin also specialises in audience engagement strategies for current affairs output, user generated content veri cation, creating new formats, and innovation in news. He created a Snapchat documentary following migrants across Europe, and was also a producer on BBC Panorama’s rst ever digital only documentary on Facebook.


Lindsay is a multi-award winning documentary lmmaker and journalist who is passionate about innovation in digital storytelling and new platforms. She has produced a wide range of documentaries and multimedia interactives on subjects ranging from climate change to the First World War, the global garment industry in Bangladesh to the psychological impact of solitary con nement in American prisons.


Erica has been making lms her whole life, and working with video at Lush since 2013. Her work has seen her travel the world to document stories of local ingredients and people, and most recently she has been coordinating the Lush Film Fund, a grants initiative to provide funding to a diverse selection of lm projects around the globe.


Alex is the Director of Content at Zinc Network, a global communications agency that helps governments, communities, businesses, and NGOs address some of the most complex issues facing the world today and deliver positive social change. He has also created several social video channels for Zinc Network, including the eponymous Zinc, which has had over half a billion video views on Facebook. Alex came to Zinc from a 14-year career in the broadcast industry, where he made numerous hit shows for broadcasters such as the BBC, Channel 4, Discovery, TLC and A&E. He has lmed presidents and porn stars, dog slaughterhouses and revolutions – but nothing will beat a private tour of the set of cult 90s soap opera Eldorado.


Ruth is Editor-in-Chief at Zinc Network, managing social channels Zinc and Zag as well as sponsored content. Ruth is BBC-trained in broadcast journalism and, before joining Zinc, worked as a freelance producer, director, casting producer and all the roles below that in the TV industry. She worked on big documentary series for BBC, Channel 4, Channel 5 and ITV, Discovery and National Geographic. She believes variety and exibility are key to a successful career in media, so she has also produced an award-winning ctional short and documentary-style branded content for big brands.


Batoul is a journalist and producer, currently based in the Netherlands. She has a Masters in TV Production and Media and Theology, and a wide range of experience in storytelling and lm production, particularly in con icted and war-torn countries. She has an intimate approach, focusing on human rights, immigrants, refugees and sensitive religious topics. Her short-form lm series The 11 Years Old Rebel has been nominated for the Short Film Award at OWM Awards. Prior to joining Zoomin. TV, Batoul worked as a program producer at NPO (a Dutch public broadcaster) and a lm producer at War Child. She is currently responsible for hunting and producing stories from all around the world – in cooperation with a network of professional freelance lmmakers.


Zeynep has worked for the film and TV industry for over 10 years. She was an assistant director in Istanbul for TV commercials and music videos before moving to Leeds for a Masters degree in Film Production. Since her studies at the Northern Film School, she has worked on feature documentaries, online short form and news reports, as well as film distribution. She was the production manager for critically acclaimed feature documentary Shadows of Liberty which toured festivals including Hot Docs, IDFA and Sheffield Doc/Fest. She saw the film through its distribution stages and was in charge of its outreach and marketing campaign. Zeynep currently works on her own projects and is based in London.


Gabrielle joined One World Media in January 2018 as an intern, assisting with the Global Short Docs Forum. Gabrielle is in her second year of a dual degree in Broadcast and Digital Journalism with Political Science at Syracuse University in Upstate New York. She is interning with One World Media until the end of May as part of her study abroad term in London. She has previously interned on radio news desks and worked as a multimedia journalist for a student-run television station.


Charlie is the Head of Documentaries at The Guardian. Guardian Documentaries commissions and acquires new documentaries from all around the world for one of the world’s most visited serious online video platforms, The Guardian’s global website. He commissions mostly short form documentaries, up to approximately 20 minutes, with brilliant storytelling and characters focused on contemporary subjects which are relevant globally and feel very new. Charlie was previously Deputy Director at Sheffield Doc/Fest for 7 years before joining The Guardian in 2014 to create the documentary strand, and prior to that he was Editor of FourDocs for Channel 4.


Matthew produces, commissions and licenses film for Lush Player, as well as setting up and managing the publishing for the Lush Gorilla channel, employing and developing its teams and content. He produces a series of short film and documentaries for the Gorilla, as well as writing for the Lush website & Louder than War magazine and producing radio content for The Quietus. He presents regular Lush events focussing on authors, musicians and activists. Alongside film Matthew has published a series of photography and poetry books as well as recording and touring professionally as a musician.

Lara Taylor

As a Social Anthropology post-graduate, Lara’s interest in people and places has evolved into a passion for using video as a tool to impact people’s thoughts and actions. Her drive is to share stories that uplift and inspire. Social media and cell phone videos are a new source of interest and learning, particularly in South Africa as bandwidth has dramatically improved, and she is inspired by the power of short videos. She’s been in the industry for 18 years, increasingly focused on participatory filmmaking, and in particular teaching people how to film on their mobile phones.

Damilola Onafuwa

Damilola is documentary photographer and filmmaker based in Lagos, Nigeria. He focuses on human-interest stories that create consciousness about social issues. He is interested in how cultures are formed and how they shape our perception of the world. As an advocate of social change, he has worked with notable organizations both locally and internationally, including UNICEF, RCS London and The Commonwealth. He is a member of Africa Photo-Journalism Database, and a fellow at The Royal Commonwealth Society.

Yue Wu

Yue is a Chinese documentary filmmaker and photojournalist based between Shanghai and Chongqing, China. Her visual work has been featured in the New York Times, The Washington Post, San Francisco Chronicle, Initium Media and Sixth Tone. Boxing Shadows is her first directed short documentary film. Yue was born and raised in Chongqing, China. After five-year studying Journalism at Iowa State University in United States, Yue decided to move back to China, and to tell stories through her lens.

Alba Jaramillo

Alba is based in New York and Medellín. Her film Project for a Collection screened internationally in venues such as Big Sky, Havana Film Festival and won Best Short Documentary at the Guayaquil International Film Festival. She is a producer for CNN’s Great Big Story and Moxie Pictures’ upcoming documentary series about education reform. She was the production coordinator for Academy Award-nominated Cartel Land and the US producer for Doc Society’s Good Pitch Local events. While completing her MFA in Media Arts Production at the State University of New York – Buffalo, she taught courses in film theory and immigration studies.

André Larsson

André is originally a photojournalist turned documentary filmmaker based in Umeå, northern Sweden. He previously worked with NGOs primarily in Burma and Gaza. With a constant focus on empowering people around him, he invites people he follows to co-create the film about them – sometimes by giving them their own camera or through a thorough co-creative directing process. André’s latest film Alone Through Iran – 1144 Miles of Trust has won several awards and the trailer has been viewed more than 30 million times.

Ketevani Kapanadze

Ketevani is in her last year of the Film Study program at Shota Rustaveli Theater and Film Georgia State University. From 2016 to 2018, she worked for Tbilisi International Student Film Festival as an organiser, for CineDOC-Tbilisi on coordination and programming, and as a project assistant for Audio Visual Storytelling Course for emerging documentary filmmakers. She co-founded the platform Tarazo, which aims to organise human right film events. Ketevani is part of the project 16 Women For Change, within the framework of which she created her first film Serving the Homeland. Currently she is working on her next documentary, Lana.

Isobel Cockerell

Isobel is a multimedia investigative journalist. She is currently reporting on disinformation and authoritarian technology for Coda Story, a crisis reporting platform. She spent her teenage years making amateur horror films on a webcam, but first picked up a proper camera as a graduate student at Columbia Journalism School. She has since documented the lives of LGBT Russian refugees in Brooklyn, African-American residents of Chicago’s west side, Uighur exiles in Istanbul, and a Colombian soap star in Queens. She worked on production for USA Today’s critically-acclaimed The City podcast, a ten-part audio documentary. Originally from London, she is now based in Tbilisi, Georgia.

Owen Kean

Owen is a producer and director, a two time BAFTA Children’s Award winner and RTS North Award winner. His work has ranged from communicating classical music to young people, bringing Romantic poetry to life for a modern audience and creating a new visual format for The Kermode and Mayo Show, to uncovering the gritty underside of Rio’s hip-hop scene, documenting people’s shifting opinions on Brexit and showing the world how a life can be rebuilt after escaping the Grenfell fire. He is based in London, but remains a Liverpudlian, despite the sliding accent.

Angus Dunsire

Angus is a London based director and co-founder of, a London based creative studio and production house specialising in video content. At Pal, Angus and his team come up with new ways to engage audiences and have done so for the likes of Somerset House, Cannes Lions, The International Rescue Committee and Penguin among others. Angus previously worked as a video journalist for a number of UK news organisations, including the Press Association – before setting up Pal. He has a passion for visual storytelling and his work has been published by the Atlantic, The Guardian and AJ+.

Roxy Rezvany

Roxy is a British filmmaker of Iranian-Malaysian-Chinese descent. She has been recognised by The Dots as one of their Creative Trailblazers of 2018 and featured twice in Broadcast Magazine as an up and coming director. After a career in television which included the twice Emmy-nominated programme, Gaycation, her directorial debut Little Pyongyang, a short film about North Korean refugees, premiered in competition at CPH: Dox Festival, had its UK Premiere at Sheffield Doc/Fest, and was the winner of best director at Underwire Festival, best documentary at The Smalls, and is currently up for a SIMA award.

Denys Lukoshkin

Denys is an independent director and cinematographer from Kyiv, Ukraine. He studied documentary filmmaking at The Sergey Bukovsky Film Program in 2016-2017. During that time, Denys became a finalist of the national contest The Guardian Goes to Ukraine as the producer of the project Furious. He took part in making a short film House On The Edge Of The Planet as a student of Digital Filmmaking course at Kyiv Academy of Media Arts. He likes to take part in Medieval reenactments, which is also the topic of his current documentary.

Lesia Diak

Lesia is a documentary filmmaker and freelance journalist from Kyiv. She graduated from the the National University of Ostroh Academy specializing in Public Relations in 2010 and studied at the The Sergey Bukovsky Film Program in 2016-2017. Lesia currently works in a creative agency communicating healthcare projects, and writes short stories and reportage. She created a series of articles about veteran families in Ukraine and people living in a war zone. The film Strong But Not Steel is her first directorial experience.

Taisiia Kutuzova

Taisiia is a documentary filmmaker and a freelance videomaker. She received an MA in Journalism from Ukrainian Catholic University. During the video academy DocEmotion in Ukraine, she created two short documentary films as a co-director, cameraperson and editor. One of her films was screened at the Docudays UA Festival in 2017, telling the story of two choirs in a single house of culture: one with veterans of Ukrainian Insurgent Army and one with the Red Army. She is currently working on her debut short documentary as a director.

Les Yakymchuk

Les is a documentary director and journalist from Ukraine. He graduated from Kyiv-Mohyla School of Journalism and started Linza Production, where he works as a producer and director creating videos mostly for Ukrainian NGOs. He completed four short documentaries and one short fiction film. His films focus on issues of human perception and communication, social problems in Ukraine and internal reflections. His documentary What’s Wrong With My Home took part in Art Doc Fest, and is about individualization that leads to drug addiction in Ukraine.

Yurii Yudin

Yurii is a self-taught filmmaker, focusing on editing and directing. Though he’s never been to film school, he developed his career by reading, practicing, and following the documentary film culture in Ukraine. In 2013, he made his first short Facing Window, about windows where lights were never turned off. Over the next 5 years, he has gained experience in filmmaking, worked as an editor and DOP on documentary projects. He participated in the Civil Pitch at Docudays UA 2018, with the project Drowsiness, his feature documentary debut. Yurii is developing digital projects around the topic of “human existence in undiscovered spaces” such as dreams or the virtual world.

Elīza Bēniņa

Elīza is a student of Audiovisual Media BA in Baltic Film School, Estonia. She has made short student films and has recently discovered her passion for documentaries. Before starting her studies, she participated in a year-long voluntary work with children in Northern Ireland with European Voluntary Service through which she became more interested in social themes, especially in the stories of the socially excluded. In her filmmaking work she wants to raise awareness and tell the stories of those whose voices are usually silenced.