European Fund for the Balkans in cooperation with the Open Society Institute Think Tank Fund
Fellowship Programme for Policy Researchers from the Western Balkans Region
aims to contribute to further capacity building and professional development of policy researchers from the region of Western Balkans allowing them to build networks across Europe through paid visits to other policy research institutions and think-tanks in the EU and other countries of the Western Balkans (WB). This programme is developed by widening the existing support to networking with an opportunity for creating links to EU and WB based think-tanks and policy organisations.The programme is a joint undertaking of the European Fund for the Balkans
(EFB) and the Think Tank Fund
(TTF) of the Open Society Institute
based in Budapest. The administration of the programme is carried out by the European Fund for the Balkans.
2. The programme
Each Fellowship should last 6 months with residential stay up to 3 months in one of the think tanks in European Union member states or policy centers in the Western Balkans. The programme seeks up to 10 talented and dedicated young researchers which must be residents of one of the countries of Western Balkans
The goals of the programme are the following:
to equip junior researchers with tools necessary for effective influencing of the policy-making processes and developing innovative and quality policy products;
to contribute to institutional development of think tanks by broadening their professional networks, improving the junior employee skills and increasing their motivation for better participation and generation of new ideas;
to enrich portfolios and networks of think tanks by bringing in researchers with different backgrounds.
At the host organisation, fellows are expected to engage in ongoing policy research projects and develop a concrete policy product.* Final product is to be delivered at the end of Fellowship programme. While at the host institutions fellows' work is to be guided by senior policy analysts.
*Policy product refers to:
research study or survey (fellows are expected to formulate clear tangible outcomes at the end of the study/ survey);
policy papers, briefs, or newsletters;
organised event or conference (fellow should contribute to thematic development of an event organised within the fellowship term);
any other policy-related product or activity that benefits both the visiting fellow and the hosting organisation (e.g. designing and hosting policy blogs).
Applicants are required to be permanent residents in one of the countries of Western Balkans.
Applicants must be full-time employees at a think tank, policy center or NGO with strong research component in one of the Western Balkans countries for at least one year at the time of application and plan to stay for at least one more year. This requirement will depend on the the sending organisation's Human Resource policy.
Applicants should be between 24 and 35 years of age at the time of application.
Applicants must be fluent in written and spoken English.
As part of the call for applications, fellows will be offered a non-exhaustive list of think tanks from which they can choose a host organisation in the EU member state and Western Balkans. Fellows are solely responsible for choosing and contacting the organisation of their desired placement. For advice or reccomendation concerning/refering to host organisation applicants can consult the European Fund for the Balkans at the contacts given in the guidlines. Prior to submitting their fellowship application, applicants should directly contact an organisation(s) of interest from the list to develop ideas for the Fellowship that would be mutually beneficial to them.
3. Terms of the Award
European Fund for the Balkans and Think Tank Fund total awards will not exceed 5,000 Euros per Fellowship. Co-funding from the involved organisations is a plus.
These funds are to cover:
Travel expenses (one return ticket, visa fees and visa related expenses, travel or medical insurance) and reasonable accommodation and living costs.
The European Fund for the Balkans and Think Tank Fund will co-fund the fellows' supervision and support by senior policy analysts at hosting organisations (up to 30 hours per month).
Regular monthly salary is maintained by the sending organisation during the full period of the Fellowship. If requested and justified, the programmeould provide for compensation up to 50% of the full salary.
4. How To Apply
To be considered for the Fellowship, applicants should submit the following documents in English (as .doc or .pdf attachments to firstname.lastname@example.org):
• Motivation/cover letter
This letter should describe the applicant's interest in the Fellowship, objectives of the fellow, his/her skills and qualifications and the value he/she aspires to contribute both to the hosting and sponsoring organisations.
The letter should also include a brief action plan with clear evaluation indicators for the proposed work and a draft budget in EUR (budget template is available for download below).
• Curriculum Vitae (CV)
The CV should include academic and professional background, a detailed description of the applicant's current job, and a list of recent policy projects in which the applicant has been involved.
• Support letter from a sending organisation, written in the name of the Executive Director /or President.
This letter should describe the rationale, the expected outcomes and the value of the Fellowship to the sending organisation.
The letter should be accompanied by a committal statement that the sending organisation will cover the salary costs during the Fellowship period.
• Support letter from a host organisation in the name of the Executive Director/or President /or Department Head.
This letter should explain the interest and benefits of the Fellowship to the host organisations.
The letter should be accompanied with bio(s) of assigned mentor(s) and job description for the visiting fellow.
The letter should also include a committal statement that the host organisation will secure supervision from a senior policy analyst (mentor) up to 30 hours/a month; and will render necessary support to the fellow in obtaining a visa. A brief mentorship plan should also be attached.
5. Reporting Requirements
At a host organisation, fellows are expected to engage in ongoing policy research projects and develop concrete policy products (see description on page 1). Throughout the programme, fellows' work is to be guided by senior policy analysts. Upon completion of the Fellowship, the European Fund for the Balkans expects a final report from both a fellow and his mentor.
6. Timeframe of the programme:
- Launch of the programme and the Call for Applications: February 17, 2010.
- Deadline for applications: March 30, 2010
- Selection of applicants: 15 April 2010.
- Duration of the residental stay at host institutions: May - September 2010.
- Duration of Fellowship: May-November 2010
About the Think Tank Fund Open Society Institute
Established in 2005, the Think Tank Fund
of the Open Society Institute
supports independent policy centers that strengthen democratic processes in their countries by identifying and analysing policy options, consulting with the government and advocating their recommendations, involving stakeholders outside government circles in policy debates, and making their findings widely available to the public. The Think Tank Fund fosters institutions that carry out non-partisan policy relevant research and promote inclusive policy change.
'Inclusive policy change' refers to a policymaking process that is open, transparent, and responsive to the public interest. The Think Tank Fund pursues this mission through two distinct grantmaking programs in support of independent, multi thematic policy centers active in various social, economic and political areas. In Western Balkans, The Fund provides multi-year core and institutional grants that build capacity for high quality policy research and advocacyof local policy research organizations.
About the European Fund for the Balkans
The European Fund for the Balkans is a joint initiative of European foundations designed to undertake and support initiatives aimed at bringing the Western Balkans closer to the European Union through grant-giving and operational programmes and, as such, is focused on individuals and organisations from Western Balkan countries.
As a direct follow-up to the International Commission on the Balkans (2004-2006), the Fund embodies the "member-state building strategy" with the development of functioning state administrations and constituency-building as its main priorities.
The European Fund for the Balkans is established in June 2007 as a multi-year joint initiative of European Foundations including the Robert Bosch Stiftung
, the King Baudouin Foundation
, the Compagnia di San Paolo
and the ERSTE Foundation
The Fund is designed to undertake and support initiatives aimed at bringing the Western Balkans closer to the European Union through grant-making and operational programmes and as such is focused on individuals and organisations from the Western Balkans region.
As a direct follow-up to the International Commission on the Balkans
(2004-2006), the Fund embodies the "member-state building strategy" which includes the development of functioning state administrations and constituency-building as main priorities.
More specifically, the Fund's objectives are: to encourage broader and stronger commitment to the European integration of the Western Balkan countries and societies; to strengthen the efforts undertaken by a range of stakeholders in this process with a view also to developing effective policies and practices in the region and in the EU and to support the process of member-state building as envisaged by the International Commission on the Balkans, in particular by building constituencies in the societies of Southeast Europe who will be offered an opportunity to experience and learn about Europe.