Fellowships

Mozilla Opens Call for Senior Fellows

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Hanan Elmasu

By Hanan Elmasu | Sept. 23, 2021 | Fellowships & Awards

I am thrilled to announce Mozilla’s recruitment for 2022 Senior Fellows!
https://foundation.mozilla.org/en/blog/call-for-senior-fellows/

We are looking for issue-area experts to partner with us to achieve our goal of a world where trustworthy AI enriches the lives of human beings, tackling the issues that currently hinder that reality: bias, poor transparency, and data governance. We’re seeking out experts who are thinking about the open source tools, data and approaches needed to equitably redistribute power and fuel the movement for more trustworthy AI. And we’re looking for people who are excited about the intersections of the internet health movement and other social justice movements, exploring interdisciplinary, collective and intersectional approaches to building trustworthy AI.

Senior Fellows are individuals who hold a significant body of work around a particular issue area and who — via this fellowship opportunity — partner with Mozilla to help shape and strategically advance the internet health movement. The fellowship is designed as a space and a platform for driving forward work that is important to the Fellows and the health of the internet. It’s also an opportunity to plug into — and help guide — work Mozilla is doing. In the past, we have sometimes referred to individuals in this type of fellowship as ‘Fellows in Residence.’

You’ll see in the Senior Fellow job description that we’re doing things a bit differently this time, a result of nearly a year of reflection and consultation for the Fellowships and Awards team.

At the end of last year, we paused many of our programs while we partnered with Simply Secure to carry out an evaluation of the last five years of fellowships and awards programs. Like everything over the past year, it took us longer than we thought! But we learned so much about how our programs have impacted and helped to create a healthier internet, how our community has grown, and where we can do things differently. As an organisation, Mozilla is also growing and learning, and in particular, we are thinking through how we become a more diverse, equitable and representative organisation.

These reflections have been pivotal to how we are designing our program. We’re coming to the end of a strategy renewal process informed by our research and evaluation that has allowed us to improve our fellowships and awards process. Part of that renewal is building and resourcing an accompaniment strategy that ensures our community and our team are better connected and equipped to tackle some of the big issues we are all working on.

We’ll be releasing the findings of the evaluation at the end of September 2021 to share what we’ve learned and invite more community reflection. Critical to our program design is making sure our values are reflected in all of our work. We’re centering our decision-making within some key principles: recognizing the complexity of movements and geographic issues; integrating Open Source practice as both a movement and approach; leaning into human rights frameworks as a powerful approach to guide our interactions; a commitment to community justice, including where and how inequality manifests globally; a longer term commitment to a healthy, open internet in our philanthropic work; and incorporating an intersectional approach.

We have some exciting work ahead of us as we center these principles more concretely within our team. You’ll see these principles reflected in the current recruitment for Senior Fellows, the first of the funding opportunities to come as we’re pressing play on a new strategy. We’ll be sharing more over the next month of how our programming is changing and evolving. And even as we press play on this and other open calls in the coming months, know that we will still be learning, reflecting, consulting, tweaking and building.