Freedom of Expression Awards Fellowship

Winners of the 2018 Freedom of Expression Awards Fellowship receive 12 months of capacity building, coaching and emergency assistance. Through the fellowships, Index seeks to maximise the impact and sustainability of voices at the forefront of pushing back censorship worldwide.

Nominate your free expression champion

The 2018 Freedom of Expression Awards Fellowship is open to any individual or organisation involved in tackling free expression threats. We are offering four fellowships, one in each of the following categories: journalism, campaigning, arts and digital activism. Anyone can nominate or self-nominate. There is no cost to apply. Nominees must have had a recognisable impact in the past 12 months. Submit your nomination by 23:59 GMT 8 October 2017.

About the 2018 Awards Fellowship

One Full Year

Fellows receive 12 months of direct assistance, starting with an all-expenses-paid training week in London in April 2018.


Index helps fellows build key partnerships, troubleshoot and receive expert support in multiple areas including personal safety, finance, PR and mental health.


Fellows work with Index and partners to identify and realise key strategic goals.


Index promotes news and regional developments through our magazine, website and social media.


Fellows become part of a supportive community of free expression champions worldwide.

What we look for in selecting Awards Fellows


A significant contribution within the past 12 months.


Courage to speak out, persisting in the face of adversity.


Creative ways of promoting free expression or circumventing censorship.


Evidence of shifting perceptions, influencing public or government opinion, contributing to legislative change.


Those cases where the 2018 Awards Fellowship can potentially add the most value.

We are awarding 2018 Fellowships in four categories


for artists and arts producers whose work challenges repression and injustice and celebrates artistic free expression


for activists and campaigners who have had a marked impact in fighting censorship and promoting freedom of expression

Digital Activism

for innovative uses of technology to circumvent censorship and enable free and independent exchange of information


for courageous, high-impact and determined journalism that exposes censorship and threats to free expression

Nominations close at 23:59 GMT on Sunday 8 October 2017.

2018 Freedom of Expression Awards Fellowship Timeline

21 AUG – 8 OCT 2017


12 DEC 2017


16 FEB 2018


16-20 APR 2018


18 APR 2018


APR 2018 – MAR 2019


2017 Fellows

Selected from over 400 public nominations and a shortlist of 16, the 2017 Freedom of Expression Awards Fellows exemplify courage in the face of censorship. Learn more about the fellowship.


Ildar Dadin

Ildar Dadin is the 2017 Freedom of Expression Awards Campaigning Fellow

The 2017 Campaigning Award is supported by Doughty Street Chambers

Digital Activism

Turkey Blocks

Turkey Blocks is the 2017 Freedom of Expression Awards Digital Activism Fellow

The 2017 Digital Activism Award is sponsored by Private Internet Access


Maldives Independent

Maldives Independent is the 2017 Freedom of Expression Awards Fellow for Journalism

The 2017 Journalism Award is sponsored by CNN

2018 Sponsors

The Freedom of Expression Awards Fellowship has massive impact. You can help by sponsoring or supporting a fellowship.

More sponsors to be announced. If you are interested in sponsoring the 2018 Awards Fellowship, please contact Helen Galliano at [email protected].