Research fellow

  • Anywhere
Organization: Universal Rights Group
Closing date: 12 Jun 2022

Vacancy – Fellowship

The Universal Rights Group (URG) is looking for a dynamic individual with a passion for human rights and international relations to support its research and policy analysis activities.

The URG is a policy think tank focused on the international human rights system and its impact on the ground. Its mission is to generate progress towards the full realisation of the rights and freedoms contained in international human rights instruments by providing research-based policy proposals and facilitating information-sharing and multistakeholder dialogue.

The URG has its main office in Geneva, Switzerland, as well as permanent offices in New York and Bogota.

Universal Rights Group Fellowship

The URG Fellowship is an entry-level opportunity for recent graduates with relevant early career experience to pursue a career within the international human rights system. It aims to give the successful applicant a comprehensive grounding in the work of the UN Human Rights Council, its mechanisms, the Treaty Bodies, the wider UN human rights ‘pillar,’ the regional human rights systems, and the ways in which universal norms are translated into domestic improvements in the enjoyment of human rights. It is also designed to provide a foundation for, and entryway to, a potential full time research position at the URG.


The Fellow will support the work of URG analysts to implement various projects covering a wide range of institutional and thematic human rights issues, as set down by the URG Board of Trustees in the organisation’s two-year Global Strategic Plan.

Daily responsibilities may vary depending on the project, but would usually include some or all of the following:

  • Desk research on institutional and thematic human rights issues at national, regional and international levels;
  • Organisation of policy dialogues, conferences and Human Rights Council side events with States, UN officials, academics and civil society organisations;
  • Interviewing relevant experts and policymakers;
  • Assisting with communication and social media outreach;
  • Assisting URG analysts with intern management
  • Maintenance of URG’s website and other administrative tasks.
  • Preparing initial drafts of policy reports and policy briefs
  • Writing articles and blogs about human rights developments.
  • Brainstorming around key questions, challenges, opportunities and possible recommendations to national and international policymakers.

Qualifications and competences

Applicants should have recently completed a post-graduate degree (e.g. Masters, PhD) in a relevant field, such as human rights, international relations, international politics, or international law. Experience working on topics such as right to healthy environment, human rights and new technologies, democracy and human rights would be a plus.

Applicants should have strong research and drafting skills; a keen interest in and knowledge of the international human rights system, including UN human rights institutions, mechanisms and policy; and good organisational, communicational and interpersonal skills. Applicants should also be self-motivated, dynamic, and show a demonstrable commitment to human rights and the United Nations system.


The Fellowship is based on a fixed term 6-month contract, renewable once.


The Fellow will receive a stipend commensurate with their qualifications and work experience.


The Fellowship is remote and Fellows must be able to issue invoices with tax registration. However, some travel in the context of certain events might be required.

How to apply

Application process

Interested candidates are requested to submit their CV (including the contact details of two referees), with motivation letter and an unedited writing sample to by Sunday 12 June 2022. Interviews for shortlisted candidates will take place in the week of 13 June 2022.

Please include ‘URG fellowship application (name) (surname)’ in the subject line of the application email.

Due to an anticipated high number of applications, URG is not in a position to respond to every applicant individually. Please note that only shortlisted candidates will be contacted for an interview and written test.



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