Democracy Fellows Program

The National Endowment for Democracy (NED) is pleased to announce the establishment of the Reagan-Fascell Democracy Fellows Program. Named in honor of the two principal founders of NED, former president Ronald Reagan and the late congressman Dante Fascell, the program enables democracy activists, practitioners, scholars, and journalists from around the world to deepen their understanding of democracy and enhance their ability to promote democratic change.

Reagan-Fascell Democracy Fellows maintain full-time residence at the International Forum for Democratic Studies (the Forum), the research arm of the Endowment, located in Washington, D.C. The Forum hosts 12 to 15 Reagan-Fascell fellows per year for periods ranging from three to ten months. The program offers two tracks, a practitioner track and a scholarly track.

The Practitioner Track

The Reagan-Fascell program was established primarily to support democratic activists, human rights advocates, journalists, and others who work on the front lines of democracy promotion in emerging and aspiring democracies. The program seeks to provide experienced activists with an opportunity to reflect on their work, learn from counterparts in the United States, and reevaluate techniques for building democracy in their country of origin. Fellowships on the practitioner track tend to be short-term (3 to 5 months), typically culminating in a strategy memorandum, short article or op-ed and a presentation of the fellows analysis and ideas.

The Scholarly Track

Recognizing the importance of intellectual contributions to the theory and practice of democracy, the Reagan-Fascell program offers a scholarly track principally for professors and researchers from emerging and aspiring democracies. Accomplished scholars from established democracies are also eligible to apply. Applicants are expected to possess a Ph.D., or academic equivalent, at the time of application, and to have developed a rigorous research outline. During their stay at the Forum, which can range from 3 to 10 months, scholars make at least one presentation and complete a substantial piece of writing (a monograph or book) for publication.

Facilities and Services

Each fellow receives a monthly stipend for living expenses, plus health insurance and reimbursement for travel to and from Washington, D.C., at the beginning and end of the fellowship period. Fellows also receive a fully equipped office and support services, including access to the Forums Democracy Resource Center and Library.

While in residence at the Forum, fellows have the opportunity to interact with staff and other visiting scholars and activists in the collegial environment at NED, and with the policy, media, and academic communities in Washington, D.C. Fellows are encouraged to consult with counterparts in the United States, and to participate in the many conferences and seminars held at NED and at the various universities, think tanks, and nongovernmental organizations in the metropolitan area.


The Reagan-Fascell Democracy Fellows Program is intended primarily for citizens of new and aspiring democracies.

Practitioner Track: While there are no specific degree requirements for applicants selecting the practitioner track, candidates interested in this track are expected to have substantial practical experience working on behalf of some aspect of democracy buildingsuch as human rights advocacy, political party activism, voter education, election monitoring, journalism and press freedom, ethnic pluralism, civic education, etc.

Scholarly Track: Individuals interested in the scholarly track are expected to possess a Ph.D. or academic equivalent at the time of application, to have published in their field of expertise, and to have developed a detailed research outline for their fellowship project. While the scholarly track is intended primarily for accomplished or promising scholars from new and emerging democracies, distinguished scholars from the United States and other established democracies are also eligible to apply. Examples of eligible candidates for the scholarly track include college and university professors, scholars, analysts at research centers and think tanks, and independent writers.

For more information please see

22 September 2004