Your web browser is out of date. Update your browser for more security, speed and the best experience on this site.
Find out more

Please note: RPS House is closed for our exhibition install. We will be open again from 10am on Friday 9th August 2024.

11987 21067 23 1690843628
CREDIT: Mirja Kuberka

Documentary Photography Awards 2023

Our popular awards open to our international audience with Open, Student and Member categories
11958 20992 23 1690800484
CREDIT: Gerard Saitner

Our Awards

The Documentary Photography Awards (DPA) is organised by the Royal Photographic Society's Documentary Group. It runs every two years. The previous editions (as DPOTY) have been running since 2012 and provide an opportunity to showcase documentary work and visual storytelling. 

The Award categories are: Open, Student and RPS Members

The selected projects will feature in a UK touring exhibition. Bursaries and support will also be offered to selected projects.

All selected projects will also have opportunities for publication in the Decisive Moment and The RPS Journal and selected photographers will be invited to present at our Engagement Talk series. 

Specifically for each category:

Open Category - in addition to the exhibition, one of the selected projects will be awarded a £500 bursary, and a selected photographer will receive development support from a leading photographer.

Student Category - in addition to the exhibition, one of the selected projects will be awarded a £300 bursary, and a selected photographer will receive development support from a leading photographer. 

RPS Member Category - in addition to the exhibition,  one photographer will be offered professional development support from a leading photographer.

We also have other prizes including free Supporter Membership of the Martin Parr Foundation and three one-year RPS memberships to award. 

Our Awardees 2023

Congratulations to the following who were selected for exhibition and awards in each category. 

11969 21016 5 1690837371
CREDIT: Ruth Toda-Nation

Selected for Exhibition - Member

Ruth Toda-Nation Love is a Life Story
Brian Morgan No Safety Net
Michael Knapstein Midwest Memoir
11870 20728 7 1690472364
CREDIT: Tamsyn Warde

Selected for Exhibition - Student

Julian Cabral Lito
Sefa Eyol The Costs of Freedom 
Tamsyn Warde On These Magic Shores
11828 20579 9 1690285060
CREDIT: Byron Smith

Selected for Exhibition - Open

Byron Smith Testament '22 
Alisa Martynova Nowhere Near
Gerard Saitner Portraits of artists
of condition-related art
11828 20579 9 1690285060
CREDIT: Byron Smith

DPA23 Touring Exhibition

In 2024 we will take the DPA 2023 Exhibition on Tour in the UK.   The exhibition will combine curated images from all nine Awardees.. 

Dates will appear in the Events page our current plans are (subject to confirmation):

- London - Nunnery Gallery Bow 8th – 20th May 
- Inverness - Eden Centre 1st to 27th June 
- Stirling – The Smiths Gallery 1st to 31st July 
- North Wales - Oriel Colwyn 3rd to 30th August 
- Newcastle – Newcastle Arts Centre 5th to 30th September
- Oxford - St. John's College 7th to 28th Oct 
- Bristol - RPS House  - 17th Jan to 9th March 2025.



Our Awardee Advisors

For each Category one photographer is awarded support from an Advisor, to help with the development of their project or practice. 

We are please to announce that our Advisors in each category for DPA 2023 are:

Open - Mimi Mollica 

Student - Laura Pannack

Member - Liz Hingley

For more information on our Advisors

Our Shortlisted Photographers and projects

From hundreds of entries across the world and around 3500 images in the submitted projects, the Selectors have now shortlisted entries in each category.  

These will be taken forward to a final review to select those exhibiting and the Awards.  The shortlisted entries are posted below.

11457 18742 31 1687614764
CREDIT: Roland Ramanan

Shortlist - Member


Shortlist - Member Category

Alice Chapman
Sofia Conti
Philip Joyce
Michael Knapstein
Anneleen Lindsay
Robert McKenzie
Brian Morgan
Roland Ramanan
Ruth Toda-Nation
11970 21018 21 1690824584
CREDIT: Giovanna Laiso

Shortlist - Student

Shortlist - Student Category

Jubair Ahmed Arnob
Julian Cabral
Sefa Eyol
Giovanna Laiso
Mosfiqur Rahman Johan
Mirja Kuberka
Anna Poloneeva
Tamsyn Warde
11917 20890 23 1690639377
CREDIT: Anya Tsaruk

Shortlist - Open

Shortlist - Open Category

Mauro Curti
Yan Jiacheng
Alisa Martynova
Stefanos Paikos
Gerard Saitner
ChinHo Shin
Michal Siarek
Byron Smith
Amadeusz Swierk
Anya Tsaruk
11967 21014 11 1690815357
CREDIT: Alisa Martynova

Key Dates

Submission period:
Submissions opened on 1 June 2023.  All submissions were made via the online portal. Entries closed at 23:59 BST on Monday 31 July 2023

Awards Event: 
took place on 30 November (online)

Exhibition: during 2024, the UK touring Exhibition will include:

-London - Nunnery Gallery Bow 8th – 20th May 
-Inverness - Eden Court 1st to 27th June 
-Stirling – The Smiths Gallery 1st to 31st July 
-North Wales - Oriel Colwyn 3rd to 30th August 
-Newcastle – Newcastle Arts Centre 5th to 30th September
-Oxford - St. John's College 7th to 28th Oct 
-Bristol - RPS House 17th Jan to 9th March 


Judges Mar2023

Our Selection Panel

Our international panel of experts and selectors was:


 Alejandro Chaskielberg, photographer and curator, Buenos Aires

 Liz Hingley, photographer, curator and anthropologist, London

 Roy Mehta, Photographer and Lecturer, London

 Rosy Santella, picture editor, Internazionale, Rome

 Roger Tooth, former head of photography, The Guardian


Thank you for giving your time!!

Learn more about our expert selectors
11961 20996 9 1690836671
CREDIT: Mauro Curti

Information on Entering our Awards

Each entry required a title, a statement and 10-15 images. Entrants could make than one entry and enter more than one category, provided they met the eligibility criteria. 

Entries for Students and Members were FREE.

Selection was completed 'blind' in that the selectors only had access to the statements, captions and images. 



Please see the link below for more information on the entry process and our terms and conditions.

Sponsors and Friends

We are grateful for the support of the Martin Parr Foundation and its commitment to the photo community.



We are listed on Photo Contest Deadlines - Photography Competitions Directory

We are listed on – Online List of Photo Contests

MPF Logo 01 SM Crop

Previous Years: Commended entries and Winners in 2021

270 D9fa9ae48fa746443edda512f46103ed
CREDIT: David Collyer

RPS Members - Commended and Winner

Winner: All in a Day’s Work by David Collyer
Commended entries:
• Within/Without by Neil Johansson
• The Across Roads Project by Quentin Ball
• Y Garreg Olaf (The Last Stone) by Gareth Jenkins
DO NOT USE ON SM - 222 10Af9df579d9fd270ceaba307cdf2f3c
CREDIT: Aishwarya Arumbakkam

Students - Commended and Winner

Winner: ka Dingiei by Aishwarya Arumbakkan
Commended entries:
• North with the Spring by Nicole Mullan
• South of the River by Nico Froelich
• Tiramisu by Alexander Komenda
212 96A8c1aa0610fb3d2b71ef3ca461b1e7
CREDIT: Debsuddha

Open - Commended and Winner

Winner: Belonging by Debsuddha
Commended entries:
• Donde los niños no sueñan by Stefano Sbrulli
• You Can’t Step Into The Same River Twice by Hari Katragadda
• Nothing Left to Call home by Taniya Sarkar