Search RFE/RL

About the fellowship


Radio Farda, RFE/RL’s Persian-language service, launched the Reza Haghighatnejad Investigative Reporting Fellowship to honor the memory of its late journalist Reza Haghighatnejad. Passionate about freedom and justice for his fellow Iranians and a champion of the voiceless to the end, Reza passed away in 2022 after a courageous battle with cancer. He was renowned for his in-depth knowledge of Iran’s political scene and his skilled investigative reporting. Since joining RFE/RL in April 2019, Reza produced many in-depth reports, including on corruption at the highest levels of power in Iran.

The Reza Haghighatnejad Investigative Reporting Fellowship intends to support investigative reporting about Iran, as well as to develop fact-based and data-driven reporting skills among the next generation of reporters who cover Iran. The Fellowship is a six-month remote program. Fellows will receive a stipend of $2,000 per month. They will work closely with Radio Farda editors on special projects focusing on the Islamic Republic’s state corruption and support for terrorism.


Fellowships are awarded on a competitive basis. Fellows will be selected by a panel of Radio Farda journalists.

Eligible applicants should:  

  • Be living outside of Iran
  • Have a minimum of 3 years of professional experience as a journalist or researcher
  • Be fluent Persian language speakers
  • Have a working knowledge of English


How to apply


Candidates should submit the following materials:

  • curriculum vitae, including current contact information
  • personal statement
  • three work samples
  • a unique investigative proposal in line with RFE/RL’s mission

Application materials must be submitted in English. Work samples may be in Persian.

Important Dates

Applications for the Reza Haghighatnejad Investigative Reporting Fellowship are now closed.

Fellowship term: March 1, 2024 – August 31, 2024
Application deadline: December 31, 2023
Selection results announced by: January 31, 2024

Privacy Notice for RFE/RL Fellows

Fellowship at RFE/RL is contingent upon the successful completion of a background security check performed after the acceptance of RFE/RL’s offer. More details and information about the collection and processing of your personal data will be provided to you together with the Fellowship agreement. 

Curriculum Vitae

Please attach your updated curriculum vitae. This shall include your name, e-mail address, social media profile, phone number, present address, and permanent address; a detailed work history; and educational background. Please also list any noteworthy distinctions or awards, and current or recent memberships in professional, political, or other groups. Please also state if you have received any type of certification (and at what level) of English language proficiency.

Personal Statement

Please include your reasons for applying for the Fellowship, journalistic interests, values, or experiences that would qualify you for the program, and your professional goals following completion of the Fellowship.

Work Samples

Please attach 3 work samples, on any platform, demonstrating your best professional work. Samples must have been published within the 12 months before the application deadline. All samples must include a date.

Investigative Proposal

Please submit an ambitious investigative proposal, including but not limited to the fields of human rights, state repression, financial corruption, and economic mismanagement in Iran.

Support Independent Journalism

Join us in advocating for press freedom and supporting RFE/RL journalists who have been unjustly imprisoned.