Creative Commons Bassel Khartabil Free Culture Fellowship 2018 (Fully Funded with $50,000 USD stipend)

Application Deadline: March 24, 2018.

Creative Commons is now inviting applications for the Bassel Khartabil Free Culture Fellowship, a new opportunity to honor the legacy and impact of Palestinian Syrian Open internet activist Bassel Khartabil.

This unique and life-changing fellowship is based on a one-year term, eligible for renewal, and includes a stipend of $50,000 USD as well as associated, supplemental funds to support other costs and overhead.

The fellowship supports outstanding individuals developing open culture in their communities under adverse circumstances. Organized by Creative Commons, Mozilla, the Wikimedia Foundation, the Jimmy Wales Foundation, #NEWPALMYRA, and others, the fellowship is part of a three-year commitment to promote the values important to Bassel’s work and life: open culture, radical sharing, free knowledge, remix, collaboration, courage, optimism, and humanity.

Fellows are expected to lead projects or initiatives that will catalyze free culture, particularly in societies vulnerable to attacks on freedom of expression and free access to knowledge. Special consideration will be given to applicants operating within closed societies and in developing economies where other forms of support are scarce. Applications from the Levant and wider MENA region are greatly encouraged.

Throughout their fellowship term, chosen fellows will receive a stipend, mentorship from affiliate organizations, skill development, project promotion, and fundraising support from the partner network. Fellows will be chosen by a selection committee composed of representatives of the partner organizations.

Eligibility Requirements:

The Bassel Khartabil Free Culture Fellowship is open to individuals and small teams worldwide, who:

  • Propose a viable new initiative to advance free culture values as outlined in the call for applicants above,
  • Demonstrate a history of activism in the Open Source, Open Access, Free Culture or Sharing communities, and
  • Are prepared to focus on the fellowship as their primary work.

Proposed projects should advance the free culture values of Bassel Khartabil through the use of art, technology, and culture. Successful projects will aim to:

  • Meaningfully increase free public access to human knowledge, art or culture,
  • Further the cause of social justice/social change, and
  • Strive to develop both a local and global community to support its cause

Fellowship details

Fellowships are based on one-year terms, which are eligible for renewal.

Benefits are designed to allow for flexibility and stability both for Fellows and their families. The standard fellowship offers a stipend of $50,000 USD, paid in 10 monthly installments. Fellows are responsible for remitting all applicable taxes as required.

To help offset cost of living, the fellowship also provides supplements for childcare and health insurance, and may provide support for project funding on a case-by-case basis. The fellowship also covers the cost of required travel for fellowship activities.

Fellows will receive:

  • A stipend of $50,000 USD, paid in 10 monthly installments.
  • A one-time health insurance supplement for Fellows and their families, ranging from $2,000 for single Fellows to $4,000 for a couple with two or more children.
  • An allowance of up to $1,500 towards the purchase of laptop computer, digital cameras, recorders and computer software; fees for continuing studies or other courses, research fees or payments, to the extent such purchases and fees are related to the fellowship.
  • Coverage in full for all approved fellowship trips, including domestic and international travel.
How to Apply:

Interested applicants should submit the following materials to be considered for a grant:

  1. A vision statement, which should address the following:
    1. Your alignment with the eligibility requirements.
    2. Details regarding your proposed initiative or project, including anticipated impacts, goals, and outcomes.
    3. Your record of open community contribution and collaboration.
  2. Biography and curriculum vitae.
  3. A brief (one page or less) breakdown of your budgetary request, including planned expenses and resource requirements for the year of project development.
  4. You may also submit additional background materials to document you previous work and successes, including blog posts, video or audio, media coverage, or expressions of support.

Applicants whose projects are chosen to advance to the next stage in the evaluation process may be asked to provide additional information, including personal references.

All materials should be submitted digitally to with “Bassel Khartabil Free Culture Fellowship application” in the subject line.

Creative Commons welcomes encrypted applications. All information will be handled in accordance with the Creative Commons Privacy Policy. PGP Key: 0xB7246757CAD068FD06F5B4431ACC9B351A0F2C1E

The latest date for applications to be considered is March 24, 2018.

A committee consisting of Creative Commons representatives as well as organizational partners will review applications through March 2018.

Questions or comments? Please contact

For More Information:

Visit the Official Webpage of the Bassel Khartabil Free Culture Fellowship 2018


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