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Unlocking Change: Soros Justice Fellowships (Fully Funded)

Deadline: January 31, 2024

Are you passionate about transforming the U.S. criminal legal system? If so, the Soros Justice Fellowships from Open Society-U.S. offer a unique opportunity for individuals to drive reform, ignite discussions, and spark meaningful change on various issues within the system.

What Are Soros Justice Fellowships?

These fellowships support exceptional individuals from diverse backgrounds—lawyers, advocates, organizers, writers, journalists, artists, filmmakers, and others with unique perspectives. The goal is to empower them to pursue full-time projects that inform, stimulate debate, influence policy or practice, and bring about change in the U.S. criminal legal system at local, state, and national levels. Fellowships can last for either 12 or 18 months, beginning in the fall of 2024.

Two Tracks for All Stages of Careers

  1. Track I: Tailored for those in the early stages of their careers, showing potential to become leaders in their fields. Successful applicants receive a $100,000 grant over 18 months.
  2. Track II: Designed for more experienced individuals with a proven track record of achievements and expertise. This track offers a $140,000 grant over 18 months. Both grants are prorated for 12-month projects.

What’s Eligible?

Projects focusing on any aspect of the U.S. criminal legal system are welcome. This includes institutions like law enforcement, courts, prosecutors, and corrections, as well as related policies, practices, narratives, and orientations. We are particularly interested in projects addressing current social, political, and ecological challenges, contributing to the building of an inclusive, multi-racial democracy. Applications should also demonstrate an understanding of how the criminal legal system intersects with the needs of various communities disproportionately affected by its policies and practices.

Who Can Apply?

We encourage applications from individuals directly affected by or with significant personal experience with the issues their projects aim to address. This includes those who have been incarcerated, have family members impacted by the system, or are survivors of violence or crime.

Ineligibility Criteria: What We Don’t Fund

  • Degree or nondegree study at academic institutions, including dissertation research.
  • Projects lacking a meaningful connection to a U.S. criminal legal system issue (applicants can be based outside the U.S., but their work must connect meaningfully to a U.S. issue).
  • Lobbying activities.

How to Apply

Applications must be submitted online via the application portal, accessible starting November 27, 2023.

If you’re ready to be a catalyst for change in the U.S. criminal legal system, apply for a Soros Justice Fellowship today and let your voice be heard. Together, we can create a more just and equitable future. Apply by January 31, 2024.

Apply Here

Download Files

Download the complete guidelines.

Download the cover page and proposal.

Download our tax lobbying rules.

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