Application Guidelines

This page contains important information about the application, review and selection process for the role of Senior Fellows - Tech Policy.

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Application Process

All applications must be submitted via Mozilla’s Job Listings. Your application must include:

  1. A resume/CV
  2. A cover letter sharing why you’re interested in this opportunity
  3. A brief (1-2 page) proposal for an independent project you plan to pursue as part of your fellowship
  4. Responses to all required fields in the application form, including the following questions:
  5. How is your work advancing a policy ecosystem for supporting trustworthy AI? What impact has your work had to date, and what have been your primary outputs? How are these outputs driving change?
  6. What are your ambitions in this field moving forward? How would being a Mozilla Fellow help you advance that ambition?
  7. What would an appropriate timeline look like for your fellowship, inclusive of the project you’re proposing to undertake? Note that fellowships can range from 1-2 years.

Timeline + Review Process

  • July 5, 2022 is the deadline to apply.
  • The application review and selection process will take place through August 2022.
  • There is some flexibility in the timing of the start-date for the fellowship, but we are planning for the cohort to kick off in mid-October.

Important​ ​Notes:

  • All applications must be submitted via Mozilla’s Job Listings.
  • All applications must be in English.
  • No responsibility is assumed for lost, late, incomplete, invalid, illegible, incorrect, inaccurate or misdirected registrations or submissions; or for any error, human, technical or otherwise, that may occur in the processing of submissions.

Policy Areas of Interest

Within the Trustworthy AI policy ecosystem, Mozilla is particularly interested in supporting policy projects that use research, data gathering tools or other applied work that helps identify concrete, nuanced solutions to advance policy solutions related to systemic transparency, mitigating bias, and alternative data governance. All policy and regulatory approaches should work to alleviate historically leveraged community or constituency level harms.

Some areas of interest for us include the following:

  • Policy and regulatory approaches for advancing systemic transparency and greater platform accountability
  • Applied learning in the context of platform accountability from other heavily regulated industries, such as the airline or banking industries
  • Policy and regulatory approaches for reforming online advertising—and political advertising—beyond outright bans on specific forms of targeting
  • Research on the constitutional and legal provisions for consideration in the reform of the digital advertising industry, particularly in a U.S. context
  • Policy and regulatory approaches to counter disinformation and to protect election integrity
  • Policy and regulatory approaches for supporting innovation around business models on the web that use new data governance models and applications
  • Explore the ways in which data valuation is understood and regulated in the digital economy, including in trade policy

We’re looking for policy experts who are thinking deeply about the policy interventions needed for making the AI ecosystem more trustworthy and who are looking at these policy issues from an intersectional lens with other movement areas (e.g. community justice, racial justice, climate justice, human rights, economic justice, or other social justice movements). We are looking for fellows whose research and work is led by interdisciplinary, collective, and intersectional approaches, and focuses on offering innovative, but specific policy solutions.

Independent Project

As a Mozilla Fellow, you're invited to use the fellowship as a platform to carry out work of importance to you and the health of the internet. Fellows are expected to propose independent projects as part of the application process.

What is an independent project?

Independent projects are projects proposed by, designed by and carried out by you, but that may leverage the resources and expertise a partnership with Mozilla can provide through its fellowship program.

This project should be aligned with the policy areas listed above. It may be work you’re already doing that would be strengthened or amplified as part of the fellowship, or work that you’ve been building towards in significant ways, but haven’t yet started.

The impact defined for the project should demonstrate a deep understanding of what it means to drive change at a systemic level. It should have a clear focus, timeline, and impact related to a policy area listed above. the thematic area of your fellowship.

It is expected that the project will result in tangible outputs and demonstrate the Fellow’s dedication of substantial time to the work of the fellowship. It is also expected that Fellows work in the open, regularly sharing and documenting their work and releasing it under an open license.

Additionally, the project must be for the public benefit and not for the primary benefit of Mozilla. Projects may not include activities that involve lobbying, voter registration, or political campaign interventions.

What should my independent project proposal include?

Your proposal should be a brief (2 page) description of a project you would plan to undertake as a Senior Fellow. Here are some questions to consider and include in that proposal:

  • What will the project produce?
  • What are the key milestones and timeline for this project?
  • What impact will it have on trustworthy AI, and how will the impact be measured?
  • What are the benefits of doing this project as part of a Mozilla fellowship vs. somewhere else?
  • Are there particular skills, assets, or resources Mozilla can bring to the table as part of our collaboration?
  • What support(s) might you need to be successful?

We recommend framing your proposed project in terms of how it contributes to the broader, system level change you’d like to see in the world, and how it supports your mission and vision to advance that change. You are encouraged to think creatively, but you should make sure your proposal has a clearly identified problem statement and information about potential outcomes. Think about whom you will collaborate with, how will you engage others in your work, and how the impact of your project could be communicated.

Review and Selection

Review Process

Applications will be evaluated based on the selection criteria included in the job description, geographic considerations, and alignment with Mozilla’s strategic policy priorities.

Applications will be screened by program staff to shortlist applicants. Shortlisting will be done based on topic area alignment, depth of experience, communication skills, ability to work remotely, and commitment to openness. Applicants may then be invited to participate in panel interviews with Mozilla staff, Mozilla leadership, and other Fellows. A quantitative scoring rubric based on the selection criteria listed below will be used in addition to qualitative discussion. Diversity in applicant background and past work are also considered.

Applicants must include an independent project proposal in their fellowship application. , Your project proposal should provide a clear description of an independent project around an aligned policy issue and a clearly articulated impact of that project that demonstrates a deep understanding of what it means to drive change at a systemic level.

Selection Criteria

Experience + Impact

  • a deep understanding of and commitment to public interest technology
  • deep experience working at the intersection of tech policy and other movement areas (e.g. community justice, racial justice, climate justice, human rights, economic justice, or other social justice movements)
  • demonstrated contributions to policy debates related to the focus of your fellowship application
  • a tightly defined independent project proposal that shows a deep understanding of what it means to inspire change at a systemic level

Collaboration + Communication

  • strong reach in your communities, and a network of partners and collaborators
  • experience working in interdisciplinary, collective, and/or intersectional ways to make progress toward a shared goal
  • the ability to work on diverse and geographically distributed teams and across cultures
  • the ability to communicate complex issues to a broad audience
  • experience in public speaking and presenting your work in conference settings
  • ability to pair subject matter expertise and research with execution in order to launch programs and related work products

Leadership + Initiative

  • a facilitative leadership style and proven skills in community building
  • an intersectional approach that recognizes different identities and realities, acknowledges the way those are interconnected, and the ways in which power impacts those interactions, or power relates to those interconnections
  • the ability to work in a self-directed manner to achieve agreed goals and outcomes
  • strong interpersonal skills, ability to communicate, and relationship building skills
  • experience working virtually with a high level of autonomy

Commitment to Open

  • knowledge and examples of open documentation and collaborative approach to research/project build
  • a demonstrated commitment to policy and regulatory approaches that advance the open web

The Fellowship Experience

Fellows become part of Mozilla’s community and gain access to our resources and diverse network. Senior Fellows are also part of a cohort that are connected to each other, more broadly across the organization, and with a wider community of people and organizations in the movement for a healthier internet. As with all of our fellowships and awards, Senior Fellows report to a Program Officer, who is there to peer fellows as a thought partner and advisor. The Program Officer will also help facilitate connections and conversations with people across Mozilla's teams and in our networks.

Supports include:

  • Community and Network: Connections with like-minded leaders, opportunities for collaboration with partner organizations, alumni, Mozilla staff, the Mozfest Community, and other interdisciplinary connections to support your work.
  • Impact Design: Working in partnership with Mozilla staff, you’ll develop a statement of work with a detailed objective and outputs that add up to the change you want to see in the world.
  • Individual and Peer Support: You will have the opportunity to receive mentorship and guidance from Staff and Fellows at Mozilla, with expertise ranging from AI to community management to project governance. Fellows also report to a Program Officer and will have regularly scheduled 1:1 meetings.
  • Tools and Resources: From projects like Common Voice to the deep expertise — and reach — of Mozilla’s Insights and Advocacy teams, Mozilla has a wide range of programs and tools you’ll be able to plug into to advance your work.
  • Project Promotion: Mozilla’s Marketing and Communications Team provides a spectrum of support for communicating your work to a wide audience, including writing, editing, content production, pitching to media outlets, facilitating speaking engagements, and sharing with Mozilla’s website audience and email list.
  • Convening: Mozilla holds an annual festival called MozFest which brings together artists, activists, thinkers, and builders working from around the world who are all working towards a healthier internet. This event provides a place and an opportunity to convene, facilitate or curate in a way that helps you raise the issues that are most pressing for you and your communities.

More Information

For more information about Senior Fellows, please visit our FAQs or contact [email protected]