Information about the program:
Apply to Join IAP’s Global Advocacy Team for housing and land rights
2013-14 focus: Change policy at the World Bank
What: International Accountability Project (IAP) works to ensure that development respects all people’s homes, lands and human rights. Apply to be one of four community activists who will form IAP’s 2013-2014 Global Advocacy Team. The Team will propose new policy rules for the protection of land and housing rights, and advocate to change policy at the World Bank. The Team members will work closely with IAP staff during a year-long program of action-research, organizing and direct lobbying with decision-makers.
Why: The policies of the World Bank set the rules for billions of dollars of development finance around the world—and they also inform the laws of many national governments, and policies of private companies. The World Bank has begun a process of revising its “safeguard policies”—including its policy on Involuntary Resettlement. The coming year will be a critical time to push the World Bank to adopt strong protections for people’s housing and land rights, into its safeguard policies. To win these changes in World Bank policy, it will be essential to build a strong campaign involving many people around the world. IAP’s Global Advocacy Team will play a leadership role in helping to build this collective campaign for land and housing rights and win new policies at the World Bank.
Who: The members of the Global Advocacy Team will be women and men from Asia, Africa and Latin America. Members will be either from a community that has experienced development-forced eviction and displacement, or will have long-term solidarity relationships with such communities in their country. Everyone on the Team will be a person with passion and experience advocating for development that respects human rights and our earth—and stopping unjust eviction and land-grabbing. Each Team member will be committed to act as a leader throughout his/her year on the Team. Being a part of this Global Advocacy Team should benefit the work and goals of each Team member’s community or organization.
(See below for more information about requirements for participating.)
About IAP: International Accountability Project (IAP) is a human rights advocacy organization that seeks to end development-forced eviction and create new global policy and practice for development that respects people’s homes, environment and human rights. Since its founding in 2003, IAP has been a leader in establishing stronger protections for people’s land and housing rights at global institutions such as the World Bank’s International Finance Corporation, the Asian Development Bank, and the private banks that have signed on to the Equator Principles. IAP works closely with frontline activists and grassroots groups from around the world in formulating and winning these policy changes.
Program Details: Members of the Global Advocacy Team will complete the following activities, during a year-long program:
• Work closely with IAP staff to develop a plan for participatory action-research involving the members’ community networks and partners in his/her home country, to produce research that will strengthen the policy recommendations of the Global Advocacy Team;
• Participate in regular meetings via phone or Skype, to plan campaign strategy and activities with IAP staff and Advocacy Team members;
• Actively participate in all campaign activities, including leading organizing and campaigning activities in his/her home country, to strategically involve many more people and groups in this campaign;
• Participate in 3-4 international trips—likely two trips to World Bank headquarters in Washington, D.C., USA, and two trips to locations in Asia, Africa or Latin America where there will be strategic opportunities to influence World Bank decisions;
• During each trip, Team members will participate in a capacity-building training, decided upon by members themselves. For example, members may choose to do a training on engaging with the media, or a training for lobbying meetings, etc.; and
• During some of the trips, Team members will participate in presentations to foundations and other groups that fund the work of IAP and partners, to educate these funders about current realities and priorities in each member’s region.
Timeframe: Team members will be selected in August 2013. Planning meetings (by Skype and phone) will begin in September 2013. The first trip for the Team will take place in October 2013, and will be approximately 20 days in the U.S., including advocacy meetings at World Bank headquarters in Washington, D.C.
The program will likely be completed by September 2014, but there may be opportunities for extending the work by several months, if Team members agree that it is strategic to do so, and if additional funding is available.
Funding Support: IAP will provide the following funding support to each member of the Global Advocacy Team:
• Cover all travel expenses—including expenses for visas, ground transport, airfare, food and accommodations, etc.;
• Cover phone and Skype expenses for participating in meetings;
• Cover costs for organizing and research activities in members’ home countries, as possible and agreed in advance; and
• Provide each Team member with an honorarium of USD $3,000, paid in several payments throughout the year, at the completion of key pieces of the program of work.
Requirements & Criteria: IAP has identified the following criteria for our 2013-2014 Global Advocacy Team. (These criteria were determined with input from partners around the world, who shared ideas about how to make this small Team as effective as possible, in the context of the World Bank policy review.) Members must meet the following criteria:
• Strong connection to frontline communities who have been affected by forced eviction/displacement. Members should be either a member of such a community or have a close solidarity relationship with such communities;
• Experience and passion for protecting housing and land rights in development, and for changing development projects and policies to respect human rights and our earth. Members’ experience should demonstrate commitment and leadership on these issues;
• One or both of the following: 1) direct experience with a World Bank-financed project that has caused (or threatens to cause) displacement; or 2) currently involved in a policy-change process at the national or regional level related to development, housing and land rights. Often, these policy-change processes are influenced by the standards at the World Bank. For example, several countries are currently re-writing their national land laws and have stated that the new World Bank standards on Involuntary Resettlement will inform these laws; and
• Basic proficiency in English, at a level sufficient to participate in planning conversations with members of the Advocacy Team, including by phone and over email. It is fine for members to use their native language for writing more formal submissions, for their action research projects, or to present in their native language to officials and Bank staff. (IAP can provide translation help for key events.) We just require that basic English is strong enough to participate fully in the group discussions, planning and capacity-building events;
• Strong public speaking skills. Again, it is fine if formal presentations need to be made in members’ native language. Members should be able to powerfully tell a story and present information in a way that convinces listeners;
• Experience in, or strong interest in, leading community-based research to inform the Team’s policy recommendations (IAP staff will support in Team member in developing and implementing an action-research project); and
• Strong links between member’s current work at the community level and the work of the Global Advocacy Team. In other words, being part of the Team should benefit the work and goals of members’ home organizations, networks and communities.