The Bonavero Institute of Human Rights is a new research institute in the Law Faculty. The aim of the Bonavero Institute Student Fellowship programme is to provide financial assistance to Oxford law graduates seeking work experience in human rights law and related fields. The programme will provide support to graduate students within the Faculty as well as to recent Oxford law graduates who wish to undertake internships in a range of organisations that work in the broad fields of human rights law, including the rule of law.  The Fellowships will provide students with an opportunity to apply their knowledge of human rights law to obtain a valuable platform to develop careers in this field.

This Bonavero Institute Fellowship at the Namibian Supreme Court in Windhoek is a six-month fellowship, tenable from early October 2018 to the end of March 2019.

About the Namibian Supreme Court

The Namibian Supreme Court is the highest court of appeal in Namibia. Namibia has a written Constitution (the Namibian Constitution, 1990) with a fully justifiable Bill of Rights.  The Supreme Court is presided over by the Chief Justice of Namibia, and has five permanent judges. It sits in Windhoek. Read about the decisions of the Namibian Supreme Court.

The Supreme Court employs three full-time law clerks, and has welcomed unpaid foreign law clerks for short periods in previous years. Like full-time law clerks, unpaid foreign law clerks work closely with the judges at the court, and will attend hearings, prepare bench memoranda on pending appeals, and otherwise assist judges in their work.


The fellowship is open to students currently pursuing a research degree or a taught graduate course in the Law Faculty (BCL/MJur/MSc/MSt/MPhil/DPhil). In addition, the programme is open to students currently in the final year of the BA (Jurisprudence) programme or those who have graduated from Oxford Law Faculty (including the BA programme) within the last twelve months.

Applicants may be about to complete their graduate degrees in Oxford or, in appropriate cases and after consulting their supervisor, may be seeking to intermit their studies in order to undertake the internship.

Applicants may apply to more than one of the Bonavero Institute of Human Rights Fellowships. Where applications are made for than one fellowship, applications should indicate their order of preference with regard to the different fellowships.

Applicants should demonstrate from their qualifications, especially their studies in Oxford, that they have sufficient knowledge of constitutional law and practice (including human rights law) to make an effective contribution. Successful applicants will probably have taken at least one of these subjects in an Oxford taught programme or will have engaged in research in constitutional law and/or human rights law as part of their studies at Oxford.

Application Process

If you wish to apply for any of these schemes, please read the individual scheme details and submit the following to by 12 noon Thursday 10 May 2018. It is planned that interviews will take place Monday 21st and Tuesday 22nd May 2018.

  1. An application form describing briefly how your area of study is relevant to the chosen placement(s), your reasons for wishing to undertake the internship and a statement of costs and expected expenditure for the duration of the internship. Please also disclose other sources of funding (eg. scholarship stipends, personal funds or college grants) that have been granted to you in respect of this internship or for which you have applied. We also require you to list your chosen internships in order of preference.
  2. A CV (maximum 2pp) which should indicate what previous work you have undertaken, relevant to your application, including whether you have been an active member of any of the organisations or groups linked with the schemes you are applying for.
  3. Official transcripts (scanned copies).
  4. Two letters of reference, preferably from individuals able to speak to your abilities in the field of international law and/or human rights law. In the case of current research students, one of the referees should be the applicant’s supervisor.

All applications should be sent electronically to  by the deadline of 12 noon Thursday 10 May 2018. Any applications received after the deadline will not be submitted for review.

The successful candidate will receive a maximum of £4,200 to cover travel, living and other expenses associated with the fellowship. In determining the amount to be awarded, other sources of funding will be taken into account.

This fellowship is made possible by a generous gift from Eric L Lewis and The Open Society Foundation.