Working at PI

At Privacy International (PI) we believe that for people to be treated with dignity and to preserve autonomy, we must defend the right for all people everywhere to have access to privacy protection in laws and technologies. The empowerment of the individual is core to our work.

Accordingly, PI aims to empower its staff and create a good work environment. PI celebrates diversity in its people, its approaches, and its strategy. People here are looking to change the world by developing expertise, creatively disseminating research, and conducting effective advocacy.

Our work holds the powerful to account. We uncover their capabilities and investigate their claims. We explore the strength of laws and technologies, and test their boundaries. Safeguards and protections must be verifiable, and we ensure they are under constant review. We live up to our own demands and conduct our work in an accountable manner — to the public, our board, and our funders.

How do we work

Working at PI means joining a team of people who focus just as much on how we work as the objectives of our work. Our core values are that:

  • We work with others to better understand, to engage, to change minds (including our own), and to build a movement.
  • We lead by example, set high standards, and critically evaluate our work. This means also learning from our mistakes.
  • We deliver on our promises. This means that we are accountable and we work on until we achieve our objectives.
  • We are all responsible for building and maintaining a good and strong PI and field.
  • We know that this is a unique moment in time where we can influence the shape of the future and we are fortunate to have this opportunity. 

PI is looking for people who share these values and want to build a sustainable movement to protect privacy everywhere.

What we do with your data

If you apply for a position at PI, your application is shared with relevant staff internally until you become a candidate for employment (or volunteering).

In the recruitment process, further data may be collected from you for the purposes of progressing your application, this will either be with your consent, because there is a legal requirement to obtain the information or because it is necessary for the purposes of entering into a contract. Where you are applying to be a volunteer, we will rely on our legitimate interest in processing your application and also your consent. This data may include biographical information, contact details, immigration-related information, references, and payment details for reimbursement purposes. This will only be shared on a need to know basis with relevant PI staff and our trustees. 

For successful candidates, we will keep this data as long as necessary for the purpose of your employment or volunteer period with PI, otherwise we will securely delete your data 6-12 months after the end of the recruitment process. 
We keep all accounting and administration information for auditing purposes, in accordance with standard practice and UK law.

For more information about how PI’s personal data practices please see PI’s Privacy Policy. The Privacy Policy includes information about your rights in relation to your personal data, including the right of access and your right to make a complaint to the data protection regulator, the ICO.

Open call for project proposals

Postion Type
Time-Limited Contractual
Application Closing Date


Many communities around the world experience exclusion, exploitation, and surveillance from identity systems. This call is an opportunity for civil society organisations and experts to contribute to the wider understanding of identity systems, concepts of ID and identification globally, and their impact on people.

Privacy International is looking for individuals and organisations to partner with us as part of a project funded by Open Society Foundations, "Building Civil Society’s ability to engage on identity," to explore:

  • key aspects of ID, identity and identification across thematic areas from electoral registration to national ID systems and systems for the delivery of public and private services, and 
  • concepts of registration, authentication, profiling, and targeting as well as questions of dignity, autonomy and discrimination related to those concepts.

Call for submissions

The call for project proposals should aim to explore questions that fall into one of the following categories:

  • Call 1 – Safeguarding dignity: ID, identity and identification: Exploring dignity, autonomy and human rights in relation to ID, identification and identity ("Call 1”
  • Call 2 - How data and technology form our identities in democratic mechanisms and systems: Exploring dignity, autonomy and human rights in relation to identity development and profiling that affect democratic processes and civic engagement ("Call 2”)

For more information about the individual calls, please see relevant document attached below.

Funding will be available for the period from October 2019 to September 2020 for a period of time to be determined by the applicant. Successful proposals will establish a clear schedule of deliverables to allow for production of outputs as well as meaningful targeted dissemination, outreach and advocacy within that timeframe.

The proposed budget for the project proposal should be between £5,000-£20,000, depending on the scope and duration of the proposed project, which will include all costs for the project for the entire duration.


We will accept applications from individuals (academics, practitioners, and specialists) and organisations who meet various selection criteria. Note: For this particular call, the prioritisation of proposals from ODA countries will not apply.

For the purposes of transparency and accountability, Privacy International is seeking and will prioritise proposals from individuals/organisations that have:

  • Established experience researching, advocating and/or campaigning on questions of dignity, autonomy and human rights.
  • Experience in taking a multi-disciplinary, intersectional and/or human rights approach to research, advocacy and campaigning.
  • Interest and commitment to working with and through the Privacy International Network. 

Because of the source of funding, the project proposal should not include:

  • direct lobbying: communication with a legislator, legislative staff member, or any government official participating in the legislative process that refers to and reflects a view on "specific legislation" or a specific legislative proposal (except administrative bodies and executive branch officials, unless they are involved in the legislative process) - it includes drafting, introduction, and modification of legislation
  • grassroot lobbying: communication with the general public that refers to and reflects a view on "specific legislation" or a specific legislative proposal and includes "Call to action" (encouraging the general public to contact a legislator) 
  • political activity aimed at furthering the interests of one or more political parties, politicians or candidates for political office.
  • These rules apply to all government levels and anywhere in the world. 

Applications requirements

Narrative proposals must be submitted using the online application template and include all information requested below. Online applications must be submitted in one-go so please prepare your application as per the following outline in advance to submit using the online application form:

- Name of Applicant
Profile of Applicant which will either: (1) summary of the organisation, including mission and strategic priorities, or (2) for individuals, an outline of your CV(s) and strategic goals (<200 words)
- Presentation of skills and experience of project team/organisation in the field of focus (<150 words)
- Project summary (<150 words)
Project objectives and indicators with details on target audiences and stakeholders (<250 words)
- Outline of project workplan to include details
activities, outputs and timeframe (<250 words)

Once you have complete the online application form, please email grants@privacyinternational.org with the subject line "Project proposal – Call 1 or Call 2” depending on which call you are submitting a project proposal for to confirm you have submitted your project proposal and attach the project budget to your email.

For the budget, feel free to use your own template. Your budget should provide details for all project related costs.

* Only applications submitted in accordance with the process outlined above will be considered.

Timeframe and deadlines

The deadline for applications has been extended to Monday, 30 September 2019. For any questions about the application process, please email grants@privacyinternational.org (with the subject line "Project proposal – Call 1 or Call 2).

The proposals will be reviewed internally by PI senior management and those whose proposals have been shortlisted will be contacted by PI at the latest the week of 7 October 2019. Applicants are to expect a short review process which will include some back and forth with PI.

Selection process and criteria

The selection under both calls will be made by PI based on the following criteria:

  • Relevance to the thematic priorities outlined in the call, in particular, to meet knowledge and advocacy gaps.
  • Potential impact on and contribution to putting pressure on and influencing key targets (allies and adversaries).
  • Feasibility of the project, including the timeframe and the relationship between the scope of work and the resources requested.
  • Regional, thematic and methodological balance between the selected projects.
  • The integration, where relevant, of feminist, intersectional and/or human rights approaches are desirable.

In selecting successful applicants, Privacy International will seek:

  • A rough balance between individual researchers and research organisations/networks from across regions and disciplines, with a particular interest in applications from: Europe, West Africa, Asia and South-East Asia.
  • Proposals with clear objectives and articulation of how the project will seek to achieve change.

For Call 1 we are aiming to select 4-6 proposals from the call, and for Call 2 we are aiming to select 2-3 proposals from the call.

About PI

The world is changing at dramatic speed with power structures across sectors - politics, economics and society at large - exacerbating inequalities leading to consequences we are just starting to understand. Powerful institutions, primarily governments but also private industry are threatening the future of freedom - the autonomy, dignity and humanity of individuals and communities. Companies and governments are increasingly accumulating power through data aggregation and exploitation, which allows them to shape, dominate, and influence our lives, markets, and societies.

In order to respond to these developments, PI sustains a cross-disciplinary global privacy movement of civil society organisations and experts that seek to defend human rights by challenging private organisations' and governments' radical and threatening practices and policies. Together we will present enforceable solutions to serve and protect people.

To that end, PI's multi-year strategic plan consists of four strategic programmatic areas:
- Defending Democracy and Dissent

- Safeguarding Peoples' Dignity
- Corporate Exploitation
- Government Exploitation

About the PI Network - what it means to join?

Applicants who are selected will also have the chance to become members of our International Network, a global movement composed of more than 25 organisations from around the world who research, advocate and campaign globally and in their countries for better privacy protections and to counter data exploitation practices. Being part of our International Network is an opportunity to interact with other partner organisations around the world, exchanging expertise and strategies on these issues. It also means working in close collaboration with Privacy International and other partners around specific projects, to deliver high quality and globally pertinent outputs.

More information about the International Network, visit our website.

What we do with personal data

Any personal data provided for the purposes of applying to this Open Call will only be processed for the purpose of processing your application. The type of data might include name, contact details, skills/ experience. This data will remain within Privacy International and be accessible by staff on a need to know basis for this open call. For unsuccessful applications, Privacy International will securely delete the data 6 - 12 months after the end of the open call. For successful candidates, we will keep this data as long as necessary for the purpose of the funding contract with Privacy International.  For more information about Privacy International’s personal data practices please see Privacy International’s Privacy Policy. The Privacy Policy includes information about individual's rights in relation to their personal data, including the right of access and the right to make a complaint to the UK data protection regulator, the ICO.

Volunteering Opportunities

Postion Type
Application Closing Date

Want to volunteer for a charity that holds governments and companies to account on their intrusions into our private lives? Then apply to join Privacy International’s volunteer program!

Privacy International is a London-based charity committed to fighting for the right to privacy across the world. 

In our volunteer program, you won’t be making coffee or doing the photocopying. Volunteers are treated as full members of the team, and play a meaningful role in our campaigns, litigation, and research projects.

Here’s what we’re looking for in volunteers:

  • A knowledge or interest in the intersection of rights and technology;
  • Pursuing or holding a degree in law, political science, communications, social sciences, or similar academic studies;
  • Initiative and demonstrated ability to work without supervision; and
  • Excellent communications skills.

Volunteers will assist Privacy International's team at our London office. We ask that you commit to a minimum of three days per week for three months. However, based on your personal, academic and/or professional commitments, we are flexible about this.

We have four intakes of volunteers per year, although there is flexibility over start and finish dates:

  • Spring intake (approx 1st March- 31st May): Application deadline - 4th January
  • Summer intake (approx 1st June - 31st August): Application deadline - 5th April
  • Autumn intake (approx 1st September - 30th November): Application deadline - 6th July
  • Winter intake (approx 1st December - 28/29th February): Application deadline - 5th October

Please take a look at our projects and legal actions to get a sense of our current work before applying. We are  interested in hearing from individuals with diverse academic and professional backgrounds. 

How to apply

  • Please send your CV and a short covering letter (max 300 words) to caitlinb@privacyinternational.org
  • Your cover letter should clearly indicate which specific area(s) of our work you would like to get involved in and why you think you have the appropriate skills and interest.
  • In your application, please clearly state which intake you are applying for. We will NOT consider any applications until after the application deadline date. 
  • We will respond to you within four weeks of the application deadline.

Important notes for applicants

  • If you are not a European Union (EU) citizen, you will be responsible for making all appropriate visa arrangments. If you are applying from outside the EU, please ensure that you research visa requirements, and the timeline and costs before applying to volunteer at Privacy International. Unfortunately, Privacy International cannot contribute to any costs that you may incur in arranging your visa and neither can we apply for a 'certificate of sponsorship' on your behalf. You may want to consider applying through the BUNAC programme, which gives students and recent graduates the opportunity to work as a volunteer in the UK for up to six months. Details of this programme can be found at https://www.bunac.org/usa/intern-abroad/professional/britain.
  • We will cover reasonable travel (within Greater London) and lunch expenses while you volunteer with us.
  • We ask volunteers to use their own laptop if they can. Let us know if this will be difficult for you.

What’s it like to volunteer at Privacy International?

While I have done internships before, my time at PI gave me a remarkable opportunity to carry out detailed research on real life surveillance techniques. The team at PI does not treat you as a run of the mill volunteer, but actively gives you engaging work and encourages you to participate in brainstorming, team meeting and court and parliament hearings. I enjoyed my time immensely. - Sneha Saumya, Autumn 2017 Volunteer

Volunteering at PI was a great opportunity to develop my research skills related to privacy issues. I was able to work closely with team members and contribute to meaningful projects in a fun and challenging work environment. I would recommend this opportunity to anyone interested in learning about and contributing to the fight for privacy. - Nick Lally, Autumn 2017 Volunteer