Yoti has announced the launch of a new Fellowship Programme to explore neglected areas of digital identity research. The Programme will give priority to grassroots perspectives from the developing world, and is intended as a counterbalance to large-scale digital identity systems that are often designed and implemented before anyone figures out how people actually plan to use them.
“Rather than beginning with the technology, these Fellowships offer an opportunity to begin with people – identifying why they might want a digital identity, and how such identities can be designed most appropriately to serve their needs,” explained Tim Unwin, a UNESCO Chair and one of the judges for the Programme.
Applicants can apply with research, policy, or solutions proposals in areas that warrant further study, while the finished project can take virtually any form, from a film to a technical platform. The three winning Fellows will each be paid £30,000, with an additional £5,000 set aside for travel and other expenses. They will also receive logistical support from Yoti and have the opportunity to share their experiences with a much larger audience.
The new Programme is in keeping with Yoti’s socially conscious approach to digital identity. Last year, the company published its investigation into the digital needs of people in 10 African countries, and followed that up with a research overview of Africa and Southeast Asia conducted with a number of NGOs and grassroots organizations.
The deadline for applications is June 15th, 2019. All findings will be available to the public for free upon completion of the Fellowship.