Deadline for scholarship applicants:

30 April 2024

Deadline for self-funded applicants:

30 May 2024

Allowance opportunities for environmental rights advocates available!


The 19th edition of the Summer School in Cinema Human Rights and Advocacy is a training initiative jointly developed by the Global Campus of Human Rights (GC) and Picture People. The school is aimed at participants wishing to broaden their understanding on the connections between human rights, films, digital media and video advocacy, and learn how to use film as a tool for social change. The 10-day programme provides a safe, culturally rich and collaborative environment where diversity and inclusivity are embraced, original and critical thinking are encouraged, skills are honed, creativity is unleashed and networking with experts from the human rights arena and professionals from the film industry at the 81st Venice International Film Festival is supported.

The programme has a cross-cutting focus on environmental rights in the broader framework of human rights protection and promotion and its impact on young generations and local communities. The course is designed to appeal to participants from diverse backgrounds, nationalities and experiences.

Why choose this course?

  • Advance understanding of the intersection between visual media, human rights and advocacy
  • Unique film festival experience
  • Networking with like-minded people from across the world as well as international experts
  • Guidance and mentoring from faculty on individual projects on a voluntary basis

Key Facts


Course dates From 26 August to 4 September 2024
Application deadlines For scholarship applicants: 30 April 2024
For self-funded applicants: 30 May 2024
Location Monastery of San Nicolò, Venice Lido
Format In presence
Language English
Tuition fee € 1900,00 (VAT included)
Financial support Allowance opportunities for environmental rights advocates. More Info.
Certificate Upon completion of the course

Rationale and objectives



Learning objectives

By taking this course, you’ll be able to:

  • Gain knowledge, insights and perspectives on the role of visual media to influence change, and raise awareness on human rights issues
  • Develop a critical thinking through reflection, dialogue and film analysis, to debate human rights issues
  • Develop a toolbox of strategies, best practices, tips and techniques on how to tell, report, document and investigate stories for social change
  • Understand ethical challenges in using visual media in your work, gain insight on how to deal with people affected by trauma, and develop self-care
  • How to build your cognitive reserves when facing challenging stories

Target audience

Experts and advocates of human rights, media, NGO, advocacy and the third (voluntary) sector and anyone who uses or is interested in using audio-visual media as a tool for promoting human rights and social change are encouraged to apply to the Summer School.

The School selects a maximum of 30 participants.

Structure and content



Course dates: 26 August – 4 September 2024

The aim of the course is to equip participants with a better understanding of the intersection between visual media, human rights and advocacy, and to provide skills and best practices on how to use visual media in the fields of human rights research and advocacy.

The course is structured in learning activities such as lectures, practical workshops, working groups, tutorials, film screenings and film discussions.

During and beyond teaching activities, you will have the opportunity to expand your professional network and connect with inspiring people through peer learning, facilitators’ mentoring, and interaction with film industry people present at the Venice International Film Festival.

The school covers the following core themes:

  • Introduction to Human Rights and Environmental Rights
  • Video in Human Rights Documentation and Advocacy
  • Storytelling for Social Change
  • Climate Litigation
  • Trauma Informed Practice and Self Care
  • Human Rights Skepticism
  • Challenges of Working in Hostile Environment
  • Ethical Challenges in Visual Media
  • Social Impact Documentary Production
  • Impact Strategy and Distribution




Nick Danziger and Claudia Modonesi, Picture People’s directors, will run the 10-day programme with the contribution of experts in the fields of environmental rights, advocacy, film studies, film production and impact.

The course will be delivered with a combination of:

  • Lectures to introduce a specific topic using a diverse range of media and teaching tools
  • Workshops to develop and apply a particular skill or technique
  • Working in small groups to encourage peer learning, develop critical thinking and actively engage participants to learn by doing through practical exercises
  • Optional tutorials in 1-2-1 with tutors and/or experts to discuss and feedback on a personal project proposal
  • Film festival screenings to reflect on and apply the framework of understanding acquired in the course to a selection of human rights related films in the Venice International Film Festival
  • Private meeting with filmmakers and/or producers of the selected festival screenings to discuss issues inherent to the film production, content, and filmmakers’ distinctive style




The Summer School in Cinema Human Rights and Advocacy is a training initiative jointly developed by the Global Campus of Human Rights (GC) and Picture People.

The Global Campus of Human Rights launched the summer school programme in 2005. It was meant to be a one-off event; nevertheless, given its success, the summer school ran for another four years in Venice before moving in 2010 to the Huston School of Film & Digital Media (part of the National University of Ireland in Galway), where it flourished for an additional six years. Since 2017, the Summer School is back to its birthplace in Venice Lido.

Picture People is a UK educational not for profit organisation with 17 years of experience working with partners in over 20 countries across the world. Picture People empowers people to use visual media and mobile technology to spread knowledge and advocate for social and environmental justice.