Fellowships with Bursaries for Human-Centric Internet builders!


Meet people who are doing it. Learn how to do it. Build it together.

Internet of Humans is a track within our annual Edgeryders festival. It is dedicated to bringing together existing projects into a demo of a Next Generation Internet that supports values of openness, cooperation across borders, decentralisation, inclusiveness and protection of privacy.

Edgeryders is a company living in symbiosis with an online community of thousands of hackers, activists, radical thinkers and doers, and others who want to make a difference. We believe that a smart community outperforms any of its members; this is the result of people working together, improving on each other’s work.

We are on a journey to help one another navigate the changes that are happening in different parts of the world.

  • How are we building good lives against a backdrop of massive social, economic, ecological and political challenges?

  • How are we creating opportunities for ourselves and where can we support one another better? In work, health, family, community life?

  • How are we building the evolution of the Internet and our digital technologies so that they support these efforts?

We are interested in what participants already are doing in different parts of the world, and what we can do together.

Are you our next Fellow? Tell us what you would like to build, explore or learn about building a Human-Centric Internet!

Fellows will receive bursaries of up to 10,000 EUR, a travel budget of up to 1,000 EUR, and the opportunity to learn from and connect the next generation of working solutions in building a human-centric internet.

Internet of Humans is a gathering of contributors to the Next Generation Internet, a 3 year research project that engages hundreds of original initiatives. The fellowship program offers participants an opportunity to explore, learn from and connect with people building working solutions for an Internet that supports our ability to thrive as individuals, communities and societies.

As an Internet of Humans Fellow, you commit to :

  1. Read what other participants are working on and share your own experiences/work.
  2. Arranging and documenting a series of online calls to which you invite people from whom you wish to learn or collaborate.
  3. Engage the people you invite to join us at activities for project matchmaking, partnership building and fundraising.
  4. Articulate a burning question to move everyone’s work forward, and turn it into a proposal for a research theme and track of a distributed festival.

We are looking for Fellows who are passionate, curious and driven, as well as willing to collaborate using online platforms and community building methodologies. If this is you, we want to hear from you!

Questions or nominations? Create an account on edgeryders and post them in a comment below.

About the program, process and selection criteria

Internet of Humans is a track in a highly participatory, distributed festival showcasing working solutions and demos produced by community members, as well as pathways for working together towards their sustainability and scaling. It will take place in November, 2019 in a number of cities and brings together the broader Edgeryders scene that involves hundreds of original initiatives.

Aiming to deepen community collaboration, during May - November 2019, Edgeryders will appoint 6 “students” to support research, community building and content curation for the Internet of Humans community. We use “students” in the Latin sense, of people that will apply themselves to the subject, as fellows of a Internet of Humans Alliance, and not in any sense as an indication of career status.

What you will get if selected:

  • A bursary appointment: Up to 10,000 Euro to reimburse your working time, distributed on the basis of winners’ financial needs
  • A travel budget: Up to 1,000 Euro, to be authorized in advance by due justification.

Process and timeline:

  • April 12 Mar - May 30. We collect submissions in the form of published proposals for Human Internet Festival.
    • Review of submissions
    • Announcement of winners
  • May 30 - June 30. Fellows host online calls and invite
  • June 30 - November 30. T.b.d with each fellow so as to not disrupt their other activities.

Who can participate?

Anyone with a story relevant to building working solutions for an Internet that supports our ability to thrive as individuals, communities and societies. You need to be interested in learning and collaborating with others online and offline.

Selection Criteria

We will consider individuals who have demonstrated an interest in and alignment with building a Human Centric Internet in the folllowing ways (each item will receive a score from 0 the minimum, to 5 the maximum, which will be summed to define the final score used to choose the winners):

  • are registered on edgeryders.eu and have introduced themselves in the Internet of Humans online community workspace: Tell Your Story!
  • are operating at the grassroots level or are heavily interacting with such groups
  • Are open in their work, use of methodology, technology, results (public and transparent communication, open processes for participation, commons licensing, open source code etc.)
  • their contribution is validated in positive responses by their peers in the Internet of Humans community (as seen from the Comments section)
  • have storytelling and content production skills for presenting the initiatives they come across to various community groups and audiences
  • demonstrate willingness to collaborate with others and use online environments for communication, engagement, documentation of work and social media

What happens if I am selected?

You will be working closely with the Edgeryders team to build the Internet of Humans community conversation and together with it’s members, put together the program for it’s track of sessions and events within the Edgeryders Festival which convenes our global community.

What happens if I am not selected?
You eligible to get a symbolic 200€ reward for your contribution if it meets the selection criteria. More information about this here: Show us stories that matter, become an expert in a topic and get paid 200 € - International - Edgeryders

How to get started? Join the process of building the Internet of Humans sections of our festival program

  1. Interview a person relevant to your burning question.
  2. Transcribe interview and have the interviewee post it here. You will need to create an edgeryders.eu account to do this.
  3. Comment in depth on at least one other transcribed interview.

Once you are done use #internetofhumans and #edgeryders to draw our attention to your comments, story and proposal for the program. This will encourage others to get in touch and build support for your work!

The deadline for applications is May 30th 2019 , but the sooner you start and complete your application, the higher your chances!

For more information come to our weekly online community gatherings every Wednesday in May at 16:00 GMT+2 (CST Brussels time) or sign up on the Edgeryders platform and leave a comment below.

Partner organisations

This project has received funding from the European Union’s Horizon 2020 research and innovation programme under grant agreement No 825652


I like the call for applications this way :slight_smile: Now let’s see what kind of people we can attract. Looking forward to meeting some fellow “crazy hacker” types among them!

Maybe we can explain that to potential applicants in a bit more detail? As in, how we envision to mesh together the different alternative Internet technologies into a kind of technology demonstrator to show what an Internet of Humans could look like. (Also, as the tech admin of Edgeryders: I’m open to integrate a few of the fellows’ proposals into our platform infrastructure so that we can experiment with them right here in this community. It has to suit for an online community somehow, of course.)


I feel like that is for the fellows themselves to define based on their own assesment of what is possible within the time frame set, no?

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Is one of these Bursaries open to those who live outside of Europe? I live in Canada and am very interested in applying. Are the funds allocated to travel for the event in November? At best, I could only attend that event if I won… is that what is expected?

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Hi @2RowFlow, welcome on board!
We do not discriminate based on location, however for the purpose of this project it would depend a lot where your network is based. Pretty much all of the events and the festival will be in Europe, and if you would be engaging groups in Canada it would be harder for them to attend, same for you.
The travel budgets are flexible, but it seems likely that upon negotiation your entire travel budget would have to be purposed for getting you to Europe. @johncoate & @nadia can tell you more about it!

Have you lived anywhere else previously or have connections to Europe and current debates about the Internet?

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Thanks @noemi for your reply! To clarify, in order to participate in the Bursary application you are saying I can live anywhere but have to have a network in Europe… I wish this were the case but in the words of Canadian communication guru Marshall McLuhan, who advised that one, “think global but live local” that is not where I have put my energy. I went ahead and posted my story, regardless, to see what, if any, feedback I might receive. Plz advise me as whether is it worthwhile doing an interview in light of this information about my network as it would seem that I do not qualify to continue.

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Hello @nadia and @noemi,

A couple of questions about the process:

Once one has posted to the Tell Your Story category, what is the next step to create and publish a proposal for the festival? Is there somewhere where proposals are published as such, or does “proposal” mean the collected content that one contributes to the IoH category through story telling, interview, and comments?

Thank you!


Hi Adam. First, apologies for not responding sooner. A dropped ball; no excuses.

Yes I would say you have it right in both examples - a proposal could be something written out in the usual way, and it can mean the collected content that one contributes. And of the two, I emphasize the latter because one could gain a Fellowship that way and not do a more formal proposal (at least not right off), whereas if one wrote a formal proposal and did not participate actively here on the platform, one’s chances would be lessened greatly. Indeed, the Fellowship is about participating and bringing in one’s network to join in on the conversations, here and in group calls. It all culminates in the final event, but that event is built on what we talk about here.

Regarding our process, we are slowly going about reviewing and making our selections (more slowly than anticipated), so the announcements are not confined to May, as it says above. And what we consider a proposal is not a narrow use of that word, as you astutely point out. We’re looking for people doing work that furthers the goals of both the Internet of Humans/NGI Forward project in general and Edgeryders’ part of it more specifically, who regularly communicate about it to a network of colleagues and friends that is deeply embedded in Europe. Selection for a Fellowship is then by invitation.

I hope that answers your questions.