Every year, the TED Fellows program selects a new class of extraordinary thinkers and doers by open application. They look for innovators on the rise in their respective fields with bold, original work. All applicants must be 18 years or older.
Who should apply
They look for different applicants than many other leadership-oriented programs. Instead of business people, professionals, policy wonks and government officials, the TED Fellows program focuses on doers, makers, inventors, advocates, filmmakers and photographers, musicians and artists, scientists, entrepreneurs, NGO heads, and human rights activists.
In addition to impressive accomplishment, fine character and a good heart are also important traits they look for in TED Fellows. More than anything, this focus on character has defined the success of the TED Fellows program.
The application process
They welcome anyone over the age of 18 to apply. They choose 20 Fellows to attend each TED Conference. Applications are currently open.
The selection process
TED Fellows are selected by the program staff, with extensive reference checking and consultation with experts across all fields. Selections are made by the group as a whole, not by individuals.
There is no algorithm for how they select their TED Fellows. They select Fellows based on their accomplishments in their respective fields, the potential impact of their work and also their character. The ideal applicant is multidisciplinary in their pursuits and is at a moment in their career to maximize the support of the TED community.