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The next Landecker Democracy Fellowship takes place from November 20, 2022 to November 19, 2023 and focuses on democracy in the digital age. 

Applications for the 2022/23 Landecker Democracy Fellowship have closed. To be notified when applications open for next year’s cohort, please fill out this form.

To see this year’s Call for Applications and for information about this year’s Fellowship theme, please see below.

Democracy is profoundly impacted by rapidly developing information and communication technologies. While these technologies offer us platforms for civic engagement, mobilization, and the sharing of information, they are also employed for anti-democratic objectives – as tools of manipulation, exploitation, censorship, and surveillance.

The common denominator of our 2022/23 Fellows projects is that they all revolve around the challenges and opportunities of democracy in the digital age. The projects take place at the intersection of technology and social justice and may vary widely in focus, methodology, scope, and target groups. They are concerned with the impact of:

(discriminating) algorithms | artificial intelligence | censorship | community organizing | data collection | democratic checks and balances for tech giants | democratic placemaking through digital tools | the digital divide | discrimination and hate speech online | disinformation online | filter bubbles | internet governance | liquid democracy | (mass) surveillance | machine learning | open data | privacy

Together and individually, our Fellows explore an array of complex questions, develop responses, and implement tangible actions that reach broad audiences. While each project is different, they all leverage or challenge the use of technology as a shaper of democracy in the 21st century. The project implementation takes place in the European Union, Ukraine, the United Kingdom, or the United States.

Ideal Candidates

We look for young professionals born in or after 1980 who are based in the European Union, Ukraine, the United Kingdom, and the United States. They have leadership experience alongside a passion to be(come) civically active. They fulfill the following criteria:

Professional work experience of at least 5 years in any field | Impactful professional and/or community networks | Demonstrated leadership experience | An innovative grassroots project proposal | A passion for serving the public interest | A record of political and/or civic engagement, community activism, or social entrepreneurship | An appreciation for emotional intelligence | Strong communication skills, cultural fluency, and humility.

While we encourage candidates with specific expertise or a background in IT and tech to apply, we are as interested in candidates who have identified or are affected by the democratic opportunities and challenges of our digital age – irrespective of which academic or professional background has shaped their thinking.

As they plan, test, and implement their projects, the 30 Landecker Fellows cooperate and support each other. To scale their impact, they rely on and activate their existing networks while also recruiting new partners who support the realization of their ideas. To raise awareness of their cause, they use digital means to share insights, inspirations, and updates with the public.

To learn more about our eligibility criteria, please consult our FAQ section.

Together We Can Shape Democracy in the Digital Age

Project Proposal

Applicants present a project proposal for a civic grassroots initiative concerning democracy in the digital age. The projects can take many shapes or forms and the implementation of the project needs to be accompanied by various activities, both on- and offline. We also welcome proposals that aim at founding an organization or network. The project engages the public as well as specific stakeholders related to the initiative. They may recruit influencers in their fields to amplify their projects’ messages.

We invite candidates to submit proposals for projects that can be realized alongside other professional and personal commitments. The projects, in their own small and large ways, support social justice, equity, and inclusion in relation to or through the use of technology. The 2022/23 cohort of Fellows strengthens democracy by testing grassroots answers to questions including, but not limited to:

How do we engage the factors and actors (de)stabilizing democracy in the digital age? | How do we employ technology to advance inclusive democratic placemaking? | How do we leverage the opportunities and address the dangers inherent in technology? | How can we employ digital means to counteract hate and bring people together?

Successful project proposals rely on solid networks and are based on cooperation and public outreach. They focus on concrete results, have well-defined target groups, clear project beneficiaries, and solid metrics for impact measurement.

Our Program

From November 20, 2022 to November 19, 2023, the third cohort of Landecker Fellows implements their project ideas and related activities. Humanity in Action provides guidance, structured programming, funding, and support.

We offer our Fellows an intense virtual and on-site training program throughout the year. In addition to training inputs around this year’s Fellowship theme, the training program includes topics such as: Ecosystem Mapping & Defining Audiences, Social Media Messaging, Creating Community & Holding Space, and Building High-Performance Teams and Empathy. The program will be a mix of training sessions and social events, both on- and offline.

The Landecker Democracy Fellowship is a unique opportunity to have a direct impact on the future of our democracies in the digital age.

The dates for the 2022 Landecker Democracy Fellowship are November 20, 2022 – November 19, 2023. See below for the full list of programming dates during the Fellowship.

Key dates are:

Group of fellows in conference room at Action Academy in Berlin

Landecker Democracy Fellows at May 2022 Action Academy in Berlin (Photo Credit: Shaheen Wacker)

Support Pillars

Alongside our training program, our Fellowship model rests on four main pillars:

I. Action Academies

Our on- and offline Action Academies are designed as collaborative learning spaces for the Fellows. A rich and multidimensional program provides ample opportunities for peer-to-peer feedback and for getting to know each other and each other’s projects in detail. In addition to Humanity in Action staff and Landecker Democracy Fellows and alumni, guest speakers and trainers provide valuable insights into project implementation, team building, and leadership skills.

II. Pods

An integral part of this Fellowship is the support and feedback from other Fellows. Landecker Fellows meet and collaborate regularly in designated pods (small working groups of five to six Fellows). The pods are an opportunity for Fellows to workshop their ideas, strategize on their projects’ implementation, provide honest peer-to-peer feedback, share good practices, and coordinate their actions. The pods are instrumental in providing space for this collaboration. In the process, Fellows build lasting connections with one another.

III. Staff Support

In addition to support from fellow participants, each Fellow has a designated Humanity in Action team member to foster smooth operations and project implementation. Fellows are matched with a staff member with whom they connect on a monthly basis. The regular contact ensures Fellows get individualized support.

IV. Buddy Exchange

A training program is not complete without the one-on-one support of another Fellow. In addition to structured collaboration in pods, the buddy system allows for sustained communication with a peer. This partnership provides additional space to discuss and safeguard the wellbeing of all members and allows for more personal check-ins between Fellows.

Our Expectations

Our Landecker Fellows commit to join all virtual and in-person training sessions, to actively participate with their designated pod, to design/implement/evaluate their proposed project activities, to engage their existing networks in realizing their projects, and to establish new partnerships along the way. As part of their project activities, the Landecker Fellows also commit to publishing at least one article or op-ed through Humanity in Action or another media outlet. Overall, we expect our Fellows to produce tangible outcomes that have a publicly visible impact on their own and other communities. Additionally, through the course of the Fellowship, we expect social media collaboration from Fellows such as recording remembrance day videos and sharing personal and project news for our channels.

To get a glimpse into our Landecker Fellows’ work in their respective communities, visit the Landecker Democracy News Page.

Questions? Please reach out.

Please contact Joanna Zalewska (she/her) at