Columbia Law School Human Rights Institute Seeks Applications for a Consultant to Further the Security Force Monitor’s Research on the Conflict in Yemen

The Columbia Law School Human Rights Institute is seeking to hire a consultant to contribute to an open-source investigation by the Institute’s Security Force Monitor project (SFM) into the conflict in Yemen. The consultant will engage in desk-based digital research with Arabic language sources, primarily focusing on state actors in the conflict. The research will be structured by the consultant according to SFM’s data model. The consultancy is time-bound, limited to available grant funding for the project, and can be performed remotely without the need to relocate. The engagement duration is expected to range between 50-150 days of work.

The Security Force Monitor conducts open-source research on commanders and the command structures, locations, and areas of operations of security force units and investigates their potential connections to alleged human rights violations. SFM's data has been used in the New York TimesThe Atlantic, and by human rights organizations in complaints to the International Criminal Court.

The Human Rights Institute advances international human rights through education, fact-finding, research, and scholarship. We work in partnership with advocates, communities, and organizations to develop and strengthen the human rights legal framework and mechanisms, promote justice and accountability for human rights violations, and build and amplify collective power. 


The consultant will:

  • Learn and adopt SFM’s data model to guide all elements of work.
  • Engage in open-source research, primarily drawing on Arabic language media and other sources.
  • Input information drawn from open-source research in accordance with SFM’s data model.
  • Produce regular oral and written updates to SFM on research progress.
  • Respond to changing needs and feedback throughout the project.
  • Adapt and refine research in line with data derived from the English language and other sources.

Minimum qualifications:

  • At least one year of experience in investigative journalism, human rights, law, or other sectors.
  • Demonstrable capability in the use of open-source research and intelligence techniques.
  • Passion for justice, accountability, and social change.
  • Awareness of digital security practices.
  • Excellent oral and written communication skills in Arabic and English.
  • Ability to work remotely and independently, and to exercise discretion and judgment in sensitive matters.

The ideal candidate will be extremely organized, proactive, and able to successfully manage and conduct large amounts of text-based research and data entry. Enthusiasm for digital research and data entry are required. Upon request, candidates should be prepared to demonstrate Arabic and English language proficiency. 

To Apply

Applications will be considered on a rolling basis until the position is filled. Applications should include: (1) a letter of interest, describing the applicant’s qualifications and interest in the consultancy; (2) a curriculum vitae; (3) the names of no more than three references; (4) a signed quote on letterhead indicating available dates and expected daily consulting rates. Please submit all of your application materials to [email protected]. Only candidates invited for an interview will be contacted.

We strongly value diversity and encourage applications from persons living and/or educated outside the United States, people of color, LGBTQI persons, women, and persons with disabilities.