2019 Open Society Aryeh Neier Justice Initiative Fellowship Programme

Deadline: March 24, 2019.

The Open Society Foundations works to build vibrant and tolerant democracies whose governments are accountable to their citizens. The Justice Initiative, an operational program of Open Society, uses litigation and other forms of legal advocacy to empower people, defend the rule of law, and advance human rights. Through litigation, advocacy, research, and technical assistance, we promote and defend accountability for international crimes, combat racial discrimination and statelessness, support criminal justice reform, challenge abuses related to national security and counterterrorism initiatives, expand access to and exercise of freedom of information and expression, and confront corruption linked to the exploitation of natural resources. To our activities we bring deep and varied practice of litigation and other forms of legal advocacy, familiarity with legal and related political fora, substantive knowledge of human rights issues, and issue- and place-specific expertise and experience.

The Aryeh Neier Justice Initiative Fellowship is a full-time, two-year program that offers lawyers and other advocates the opportunity to gain practical experience in international human rights advocacy across a broad range of thematic areas and geographies, embedding them as an integral part of the global Justice Initiative team.



Selected Fellows will demonstrate a strong commitment to human rights and the rule of law in general, and a particular interest in our four core thematic areas. Additional requirements include:

  • A university degree in Law or an LL.M or M.A. in Human Rights; graduate degrees in related fields (e.g. economics, politics and statistics) may be considered sufficient in exceptional circumstances, provided the applicant can demonstrate substantial human rights advocacy experience and a demonstrated capacity to work on legal issues.
  • A maximum of five years practical experience in the human rights field.
  • A demonstrated record of accomplishment in legal analysis, legal research and writing, litigation, and/or relevant advocacy.
  • A high degree of English proficiency (speaking, writing and reading).



In addition to filling out the online application, candidates must also submit the following documents:

1. A statement of purpose of no more than two pages detailing (a) the applicant’s interest and experience in human rights, generally, and the Aryeh Neier fellowship, specifically, (b) the  specific thematic area(s) in which the applicant is interested,  and (c)  the reasons for their interest in that particular area and how the applicant intends to contribute to those fields.

2. Curriculum Vitae.

Please note, all application materials must be submitted as one single PDF document. We are unable to receive additional documents via email.

Only shortlisted candidates will be contacted for interviews and writing exercises which will take place by June 2019. The final selection decisions will be announced by end of July 2019, with successful applicants beginning their fellowship in January 2020.


For any additional information about the application process and the program itself, please contact:



Aryeh Neier Fellow

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