Joelle studied international relations at the Graduate Institute of International Studies in Geneva, Switzerland. Swiss and British, she has over fifteen years of work experience on human rights and foreign policy—both in the public sector and non-governmental organisations. She is currently a researcher and analyst based in Geneva, Switzerland. Before that, she worked for Human Rights First (New York, Washington DC) and for the Alliance of Liberals and Democrats in the European Parliament (Brussels, Strasbourg). 

Joelle has focused recent work on the compelling role that religion plays in today’s world and its multifaceted effects on security, conflict, human rights, society and identity. She has worked on topics relating to discrimination and incitement and more generally the role that discourse plays in the public space—positively or negatively. Joelle has extensively published on allegations of blasphemy, which often target political dissidents, religious minorities or free-thinkers.


Joelle frequently explores how the established right to freedom of religion or belief is being tested, and can no longer be taken for granted-- in an age when sectarian conflict and violence is waged in the name of religion. Currently a member of the OSCE/ODIHR Panel of Experts on Freedom of Religion or Belief, Joelle has guest-lectured and has participated in many debates on questions linked to violence committed in the name of religion and different legal cultures around freedom of expression worldwide.

Joelle is also an active member of the Liberal-Radical party in Geneva and recently stood for Geneva's parliamentary elections, where she obtained 20'008 votes. She became an alternate membre of Parliament in September 2019 (Députée suppléante du Grand Conseil de la République et Canton de Genève).

©2017 by Joelle Fiss