Campus & Community

Initiative reduces ‘overreliance’ on punishment

2 min read

The Open Society Institute’s Criminal Justice Initiative (CJI) supports individuals to further its mission of reducing the nation’s overreliance on policies of punishment and incarceration. Through three fellowships – the Soros Justice Advocacy Fellowship, the Soros Justice Senior Fellowship, and the Soros Justice Media Fellowship – CJI funds dynamic individuals from various fields to design and implement projects that reflect and support the work of CJI’s programs.

The Soros Justice Advocacy Fellowships are two-year projects implemented in partnership with leading nonprofit agencies whose mission is related to criminal justice. Applicants must have demonstrable substantive knowledge of and/or up to three years experience with the issues and communities with which they propose to work. Applicants can but are not required to have an undergraduate or graduate degree in law, public health, public policy, or other fields related to criminal justice. Awards of up to $98,200 are granted for two-year projects.

The Soros Justice Senior Fellowship enables activists, academics, and community leaders to raise the level of national discussion and scholarship, organize communities, and prompt policy debate on issues that are key to CJI’s work. Fellows devote up to one year to research, write, or initiate projects. Awards range from $50,000 to $70,000 for one-year projects.

The Soros Justice Media Fellowship seeks journalists working in print, photography, radio, and documentary film and video to improve the quality and depth of media coverage of incarceration and criminal justice issues. Fellows devote up to one year to research, write, produce, and widely disseminate stories. Awards are up to $45,000 for one-year projects (shorter projects will be prorated).

Application deadline for the fellowships is Sept. 26. For application and program information, visit