Researcher, Americas

Human Rights Watch, To Be Determined, United States

Skill Required:, Policy/ Advocacy and CampaignResearch and Analysis
Preferred Experience: 
3 Years
Closing Date for Applications: 
30th April, 2020

Job Description

Note: The successful candidate may be based in either HRW’s New York or Washington DC office, or may work remotely from Latin America. Qualified candidates from all areas are encouraged to apply.

Americas Division
Multiple Locations Considered
Application Deadline: April 30, 2020

The Americas Division of Human Rights Watch (HRW) is seeking highly-qualified applicants for the position of Americas Researcher. The Americas Division is part of the Program Office, which consists of regional and thematic divisions. The Americas Division works to advance human rights in Latin America and conducts a wide range of activities, including investigation, report writing, advocacy and media work. This position reports to the Executive Director of the Americas Division, based in Washington, DC, and the Acting Deputy Director of the Americas Division, based in the region. The researcher will ideally be based in Latin America, Washington, D.C., or New York.


  • Developing and implementing a research and advocacy agenda that focuses on improving respect for human rights in various Latin American countries, with a special focus on Central America;
  • Researching, monitoring and documenting human rights abuses by conducting fact-finding missions and collecting and analyzing information from a wide variety of sources, including government agencies and institutions, local media, NGOs, journalists, diplomats, and others in the field;
  • Writing and publicizing reports, briefing memos, statements, op-eds, articles, and press releases, as well as submissions to international bodies;
  • Presenting human rights concerns to government officials, opinion leaders, inter-governmental agencies, and the media;
  • Traveling for substantial periods of time, several times a year, to carry out research and advocacy;
  • Responding promptly to queries from the media, the public, and colleagues in the human rights community and taking initiative to project concerns in public debate;
  • Working closely with local and regional human rights organizations to ensure that the work of HRW complements and enhances their own work;
  • Liaising effectively with HRW staff located in multiple locations throughout the world to ensure effective coordination;
  • Delivering outputs in a timely manner and being consistent with the agreed strategy and priorities of the Americas Division;
  • Assisting the Americas Division and HRW’s Development and Outreach Department in conducting fundraising;
  • Working flexible hours to accommodate developing and urgent events, as needed; and
  • Performing other duties as required.


Education: An advanced (graduate) degree in international relations, journalism, law, Latin American regional studies, social sciences and/or extensive experience in human rights or related work is required.

Experience: A minimum of three years of experience working on human rights or related issues in Latin America, including time spent working in the region, is preferred.

Related Skills and Knowledge:

  • Excellent oral and written communication skills in English and Spanish are required.
  • Significant knowledge of human rights and politics in Latin America is desirable.
  • Ability to identify and prioritize, research, analyze, and effectively communicate complex human rights issues in a rigorous, nuanced and efficient manner is required.
  • Ability and sensitivity to conduct interviews with a wide range of people, including victims of abuse, witnesses, and government officials, is required.
  • Ability to produce high-quality written material under tight deadlines is required.
  • Ability to identify advocacy opportunities and advise the Americas division in developing and implementing advocacy strategies is required.
  • Ability to work flexible hours and respond quickly to crises and conflicts as they occur is required.
  • Strong initiative and follow-through, capacity to think creatively and strategically, ability to multi-task effectively, and ability to work well under pressure are required.
  • Strong public-speaking skills are essential.
  • Ability to make sound decisions consistent with functions is essential.
  • Ability to think strategically about the global and local media environments and how to use the print and electronic media effectively to further advocacy goals is desirable.
  • Knowledge of and experience working in international human rights and familiarity with international human rights law is preferred.

Salary and Benefits: HRW seeks exceptional applicants and offers competitive compensation and employer-paid benefits.

How to Apply: Please apply immediately by visiting our online job portal at and attaching a letter of interest, resume or CV, and a brief writing sample (unedited by others), preferably as PDF files. No calls or email inquiries, please. Only complete applications will be reviewed and only shortlisted candidates will be contacted.

If you are experiencing technical difficulties with your application submission, please email Due to the large response, application submissions via email will not be accepted and inquiries regarding the status of applications will go unanswered.

Human Rights Watch is strong because it is diverse. We do not discriminate in hiring practices and actively seek a diverse applicant pool. We encourage candidates of all abilities, ages, gender identities and expressions, national origins, races and ethnicities, religious beliefs, sexual orientations, and those with criminal records to apply. We welcome all kinds of diversity. Our employees include people who are parents and nonparents, the self-taught and university educated, and from a wide span of socio-economic backgrounds and perspectives on the world. Human Rights Watch is an equal opportunity employer.

Human Rights Watch is an international human rights monitoring and advocacy organization known for its in-depth investigations, its incisive and timely reporting, its innovative and high-profile advocacy campaigns, and its success in changing the human rights-related policies and practices of influential governments and international institutions.

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