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Open Society Internship for Rights and Governance

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The Open Society Internship for Rights and Governance is a global initiative designed to identify, cultivate, and support the next generation of human rights practitioners.

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Note: There will be no internship placement or Clinical Seminar for the 2020 program cycle.

The Open Society Internship for Rights and Governance is a global initiative designed to identify, cultivate, and support the next generation of human rights practitioners. Participants are chosen from among the ranks of graduate programs in public policy and related subjects at a consortium of universities around the world. Through their participation in a two-week intensive Clinical Seminar and a 8- or 12-week internship, grantees and alumni form a network of dedicated practitioners united by common values across a broad range of fields.

Purpose and Priorities

Individuals committed to advancing human rights, democratic governance, and justice constantly confront new and unforeseen challenges. Today, authoritarian and illiberal push-backs, entrenched inequality, the accumulation of power by transnational corporations beyond the reach of national legislation, and technological innovations, among other developments, require us to not only question common assumptions but also to identify new opportunities. To protect and advance human rights and democracy as well as justice, we need fresh ideas for civil society actors and creative policy proposals for governments.

The Open Society Internship for Rights and Governance is specifically tailored to invest in promising individuals who are poised to foster and sustain open societies. We train them to contribute to a more strategic, impactful human rights practice.

The initiative combines practice, in the form of an internship, with a skills-oriented two-week seminar to help prepare grantees for their future work. The program takes a broad definition of human rights and governance inclusive of promoting fundamental freedoms, expanding public access to information, challenging inequalities through development and rights, and advancing approaches that ensure transparency and accountability of state institutions.

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