Apply for the World Justice Challenge 2024 & Win $20,000 USD

World Justice Challenge 2024


The World Justice Challenge is a global competition and program of supporting activities to identify, recognize and promote good practices and high-impact initiatives that protect and advance the rule of law.

The Challenge compiles an evidence base for successful rule of law approaches, raises their strategic visibility, and strengthens an emerging network of rule of law champions. The Challenge competition invites submissions for initiatives that address critical rule of law challenges around the world in particular thematic categories. For the 2024 competition, the theme is The Rule of Law Foundation of Democracy, focusing on effective strategies for strengthening the rule of law to reverse autocracy and rebuild trust in democratic governance. Past themes have been access to justice, anti-corruption and open government, accountable governance, and equal rights and non-discrimination.

The competition has had two in-person cycles in the context of the World Justice Forum (in 2019 and 2022), and one virtual cycle (in 2021). Project topics are diverse and multi-disciplinary, and have included combating gender-based violence, monitoring government spending, promoting environmental protections, safeguarding the right to information, and supporting youth leadership.

In each cycle, the Challenge selects and convenes a group of finalists from across sectors, including civil society organizations, government agencies, media, and the private sector. A judging panel awards cash prizes to winning projects that show results and promising potential for future progress, replication, and scaling. The competition also supports all finalist organizations with visibility, collaboration, and profile-building. Finalists are invited to join the World Justice Challenge Alumni Network, a community of practice that facilitates year-round networking and information exchange for its members.

The World Justice Challenge is a global competition conducted by the World Justice Project (WJP) to identify, recognize, and promote good practices and high-impact initiatives that protect and advance the rule of law. This year’s Challenge theme is “The Rule of Law Foundation of Democracy” and is dedicated to addressing pressing rule of law concerns that underpin democratic resilience and renewal. To learn more about this theme, please click here.   

Deadline to apply is 11:59 p.m. EST on January 31.

About the Challenge:  

  • Applications are due January 31, 2024, by 11:59 PM EST. 
  • Cash awards ($20,000 USD) will go to five initiatives that show demonstrable results and promising prospects for future progress and replication and/or scaling. 
  • Awards will be made in the following categories:
    • Ensuring that electoral processes and transitions of government power are subject to the law 
    • Building citizen trust in justice institutions and guaranteeing that justice systems are independent, impartial, accountable, transparent, and ethical  
    • Protecting free media and a robust, trustworthy information ecosystem in the face of new challenges posed by 21st century technological change 
    • Strengthening young people’s engagement with and commitment to rule of law and democracy processes and institutions 
    • The U.S. Building Trust Prize for the project from the United States that demonstrates exceptional impact in one or more of the above categories  
  • WJP will select thirty finalists. The finalists will be profiled on WJP’s website and social media to promote visibility and uptake of these promising approaches. 
  • The five winning initiatives will be selected in the following manner:
    • Four winners will be chosen by a committee of experienced judges. 
    • A fifth winner will be selected by a network of finalists from previous World Justice Challenge competitions.  
  • The competition will culminate at an event adjacent to the American Bar Association Annual Meeting, which will take place August 3-9, 2024 in Chicago, USA. All finalists will be invited to attend in-person to showcase their work and take part in the Challenge awards ceremony. 
  • All finalists will be invited to join the World Justice Challenge Alumni Network for ongoing networking, partnership, visibility, and learning opportunities to support their work.  

Eligibility and Entry Requirements: 

  • Initiatives that address at least one of the issue areas in the categories stated above are eligible to apply. 
  • The competition is global and open to applications from any country or territory in the world. As noted, only United States-based projects will be eligible for the U.S. Building Trust Prize. Awards in the other four categories will be given to non-U.S. projects.  
  • The competition is multidisciplinary and open to organizations across sectors, including, but not limited to: non-profits; social entrepreneurs; media; multilateral organizations; local and national government bodies and agencies; businesses/private sector enterprises; bar associations; law firms; foundations; and academics.
  • Collaborative entries among several organizations are welcome. 
  • Entries must be submitted in English. However, please note that entries will be evaluated solely based on the quality of the project itself, and not on the application’s level of English language mastery or ability.  
  • Entries will be evaluated according to the following criteria: 
    • Impact: the initiative has demonstrably made a contribution to improving an important rule of law and democracy problem.
    • Sustainability: the initiative demonstrates the potential for sustained operation over time.  
    • Scaling and/or Replicability: the initiative demonstrates potential for expansion in its current context and/or replication in other contexts (e.g., other geographies, populations, or sectors).
  • Please note that the World Justice Challenge is meant to recognize effective projects and policies already in progress and is not a grantmaking program for new initiatives in development. Applications seeking funding for future initiatives will not be considered. 

For any questions about the World Justice Challenge, please contact [email protected]

Visit the Official Webpage & Apply! 

Applicants can also submit their applications via email to [email protected] using the subject line “Application: WJC 2024”. Email the word document version of the application with any additional materials you would like to be considered as file attachments. To download the Microsoft word document version of the Challenge application form click here.

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