The Institute on Statelessness and Inclusion was founded in 2014. This is the year in which increasing international attention on the problem of statelessness culminated in various international initiatives, including the First Global Forum on Statelessness and the launch, by UNHCR, of a campaign to end statelessness by 2024. By this time, the Institute’s founders had all been working on statelessness, including collaboratively, for many years. In the midst of the emerging global movement around this issue, they came together to discuss how to fill the growing demand for knowledge, analysis and capacity building support to more effectively address statelessness. They felt that ongoing efforts to give stateless persons a greater voice and more agency to influence this growing movement could be further strengthened. They also noted the clear need for an organisation that could help to bridge the divide between academic research, policy development and practice; and that could, through engagement with the arts, raise the profile of and provoke thought on the issue among a wider audience. The founders also felt that there was a need for greater dialogue, partnership and cross-fertilisation between the field of statelessness and those focusing on other forms of disenfranchisement; and that work on statelessness must be multidisciplinary, though underpinned by the international human rights framework. From these discussions, the Institute was born.
The Institute’s mission and strategies have been infused with the needs that the founders have identified and the ideas that they have developed over their more than 20 years of collective experience on statelessness. More specifically, the Institute will incorporate and build on the existing work of the Statelessness Programme, which operated at Tilburg University from 2011 to 2014 and which was run by two of the Institute’s founders.
Thank you for crowdfunding us
The Institute on Statelessness and Inclusion ran a crowdfunding campaign from September - November 2014 to help raise funds to kick-start its work. We were absolutely thrilled to received widespread and generous support. We had donations from family members, old friends, new friends, friends of friends, family members of friends, colleagues, friends of colleagues, old students, interns, people who we have corresponded with on the issue and people who have simply found this initiative by themselves and decided to make a contribution. The incredible total raised gave us exactly the kick-start that we needed. Thank you to everyone who contributed, including those who did so anonymously. We will not forget your support.