Ford - Mozilla Open Web Fellowship

The Centre for Intellectual Property and Information Technology Law (CIPIT) is an evidence-based research and training centre based at Strathmore Law School, Nairobi, Kenya.

As a research institute working in the global South, specifically in Eastern Africa, we continue to witness the positive liberative power of the Internet for societies. At the same time we remain cognizant of the rapidly evolving mass surveillance and control aspects that web technologies provide to States and corporates.

Our mission is to study, understand, and share knowledge on the development of cyberspace, especially as it relates to Africa. We generate relevant evidence while building partnerships across the region to sustain efforts geared towards bending the arc of Internet towards liberation and fulfillment of Individual freedoms and potential. This is carried out through activities that include policy analysis, alternative policy drafting, training, and the creation of tools to make policy making a more democratic and open process.

In our current programming phase, over and above our policy analysis, we are working on incorporating Information Controls in Election monitoring methodology, conducting needs assessments on Internet Freedom in the Eastern Africa region and are setting up an interactive Africa ICT Policy database.

We are offering to host a Mozilla Open Web Fellow in order to increase our reach in this field while also building local capacity in the region. Some communities with which we work rely on the Internet as the only alternative to accessing objective information about their country and the world, particularly where the government owns traditional media outlets and exerts substantial information controls. These Information controls tendencies, however, are rapidly finding their way into the Internet. The task is to ensure that passed legislations, gazetted regulations and adopted conventions respect and uphold the open nature of the web, for now and in the future.

To this end, we are looking for a focused individual interested in probing and analyzing facts and situations that will shape the next generation of Internet laws in Africa. CIPIT offers mentorship and supervision, but a mature, disciplined and time conscious individual is the ideal match we are hoping to host at Strathmore.

The fellow will have the advantage of working from Nairobi, an entry hub to Eastern Africa. CIPIT is 20 kilometres from JKI Airport, from which you can access regional capitals Kampala (Uganda), Dar es Salaam (Tanzania), Addis Ababa (Ethiopia), Kigali (Rwanda), and Juba (South Sudan). We are within walking distance from major tech-hubs in Nairobi and many major global organizations in the city.

Our in-house staff is our main resource. You will work with experienced, passionate and friendly folks ranging from Chemistry PhDs who hack IP issues, to political scientists working on Information controls, and human rights lawyers. It is also important to note that our coffee is great and tropical beaches in Coastal Kenya offer a great chance to unwind when life overwhelms, which it more often than not does.

Application details are available on the Mozilla fellowship website