10 January 2018

The Right to Education Initiative is a global human rights organisation focusing on the right to education. Established in 2000 by the first UN Special Rapporteur on the right to education, Katarina Tomaševski, RTE was re-launched in 2008 as a collaborative initiative supported by ActionAid International, Amnesty International, Global Campaign for Education, Save the Children and Human Rights Watch. Since May 2017 RTE is registered under UK law.

RTE’s vision is a world where the right to education for all becomes a reality, from early childhood to adulthood and throughout life, on the basis of the principles of non-discrimination and equality. A world where education is recognised as a human right itself in law and in practice and where all human rights in and through education are realised. A world where states and non-state actors can be held to account for their obligations and responsibilities respectively; and where civil society is empowered to play a key role to monitor its implementation.

RTE promotes education as a human right, making international and national law accessible to everybody. We conduct research and legal analysis and we develop tools and guides to help understand and effectively use human rights mechanisms to claim and enforce the right to education. We build bridges between disciplines (human rights, education, and development), actors (CSOs, international organisations, academics), and language communities, linking international, national, and local advocacy with practical engagements leading to positive changes on the ground.

Role overview

We are currently seeking a volunteer to assist in the research work of RTE and be part of a small team based at our office in London.

The primary purpose of this internship is to support the research of a practical and comprehensive handbook on the right to education.

As well as being committed to the right to education, you will need a solid understanding of international human rights law, including economic and social rights. You will need excellent legal research and analytical skills, and will help us draft case studies, background papers, reports, and case-law summaries.  

RTE is a small, focused, and passionate team. We are looking for someone who has excellent interpersonal skills.

Key tasks & responsibilities

Legal research on the right to education at the international and national levels

  • researching comparative constitutional law and issues related to education

  • researching international and regional human rights law, and related topics such as justiciability and accountability

  • drafting materials in support of publications, including literature reviews, case-studies, and case-law summaries

  • monitoring the news for right to education related items, such as important court decisions, developments in the field, new reports, resources, events, etc.

  • editing and proofreading

  • researching for the development of online content, including news items and blog posts

Person specification

Essential skills

  • excellent research skills, including the ability to use case-law databases and education datasets
  • ability to draft case summaries, literature reviews, and case-studies to a high standard
  • excellent communications skills, including fluency in English
  • excellent written and editing skills, including ability to translate complex legal information into accessible information for non-legal profession
  • computer literate with a willingness to learn new skills, including website management
  • strong interpersonal and organisational skills


  • working knowledge of other languages, especially French, Spanish and/or Arabic

Knowledge and experience

  • commitment to the right to education
  • studies in human rights and/or international law

Our commitment to you

At RTE we recognise that you will be giving your time and effort freely and in return we will take your professional development seriously. Only serious candidates looking to work in the human rights, humanitarian, or development sectors should apply.

Commitment, remuneration & location

In terms of time commitment we require at least two days, ideally three, per week. The legal research internship is offered for a maximum of six months but we expect a minimum commitment of four months.

As an entry-level position primarily aimed at students and recent graduates, we understand that you may have ongoing academic and/or other working commitments. We will therefore endeavour to be flexible in our working arrangements and accommodate important deadlines.

This position is unpaid but we offer a stipend of £14 to cover travel and lunch expenses.

The internship will be based in London.

How to apply & deadlines

Interested applicants should email a CV and covering letter to info@right-to-education.org addressed to Erica Murphy with ‘Legal research intern’ in the subject heading by Sunday 11th February. Please indicate in your covering letter how long you can commit to the internship for, how many days per week you can commit to, and when you can start.

Interviews will take place on Thursday 15th February 2018. The successful candidate will start the week beginning 19th February.