Foreign Policy Research Institute Internship Program

Currently accepting applications:
Spring 2015 

          Administrative Intern
Summer 2015
          Administrative Intern
          Editorial Intern
          Research Intern

Administrative Interns help with conference preparation, development, public relations, and maintain the Institute’s specialized periodical collection.

Editorial Interns are trained to analyze scholarly articles, correspond with authors, fact check, copyedit, proofread, and generally help with the production of the quarterly journal Orbis, as well as perform general administrative duties throughout the Institute.

Research Interns work under the direct supervision of the Institute’s research staff. Students help maintain data files, conduct literature searches, compile indices, or produce other material.

Work-study (for Pennsylvania residents) and internships are available throughout the year. (Note: Internships are unpaid; for information on work-study grants, query your campus financial aid office.) Students serve in one of three support capacities.

All language skills are welcome, but knowledge of Russian, Chinese, Persian, Arabic, French, German, and Spanish is especially helpful. A familiarity with word-processing programs and conducting research on the world-wide web is also desirable. Internships are available for an academic year, a semester, a summer, or by agreement, for a shorter time. A minimum commitment of 10 hours a week is required.

How to Apply for Internships

Our deadlines are as follows: close of business (5pm) on 1 August for fall applications, 1 December for spring applications, and 1 April for summer applications. Send a cover letter stating your research interests and which internship you are applying for, a one page résumé, and a short writing sample (approx 3-10 pages, in .doc or .pdf format) to: [email protected]

If you have any further questions, please feel free to contact the internship coordinator at [email protected]. Due to the number of applications that we receive you will only be contacted if you have been selected; this will usually occur within two weeks of the application deadlines. Please, do not call to check on the status of your application.

TTCSP Research Internship Program
2014-2015 Academic Year

Think Tanks and Civil Societies Internship Program

Please note, all applications for this opportunity should be send to Dr. McGann, head of the TTCSP, at [email protected].

The Think Tanks and Civil Society Program (TTCSP) runs a small, highly selective internship program for students (grad and undergrad) and recent graduates interested in gaining first-hand experience in public policy research in domestic and international affairs.

Candidates must be highly motivated and able to work independently in a demanding research environment. The research intern positions require excellent research and analysis skills as well as data collection and project management skills. Candidates must be proficient in both oral and written English. Knowledge of Chinese, French, Spanish and Arabic is a plus but not a prerequisite for most projects. Internships are on a volunteer basis and based in our Philadelphia office on the campus of the University of Pennsylvania. Virtual internships can be arranged on a case by case basis but are usually granted to students who have previously served as research interns. Interns work independently and in teams. We do our best to match the qualifications and interests of our interns with research and consulting projects to which they can contribute most.

This is an excellent opportunity for those students who are planning to attend graduate school in international relations, public policy, law school and/or work in a think tank or international organization. Ideal for International Relations, Political Science, English, Environment, Global Health and Development majors. While the program focuses on think tanks and policy oriented NGOs the skills acquired can be applied to the fields of business, law, international affairs and consulting.

We are currently seeking research interns for the following research and project teams:

The Security and International Affairs Team at the Think Tanks and Civil Societies Program (TTCSP) is seeking research interns for the Fall 2014 semester. This is an opportunity for responsible, diligent students--particularly those with a strong interest in international relations--to prove their analytical skills at an internationally-renowned Penn program. Interns will be tightly involved in producing a professional-quality background reports on modern trans-national security issues, and will benefit from the TTCSP's superb networking and professional development opportunities. Interns with native or near-native proficiency in Spanish, Portuguese, Japanese, and Russian are preferred. Those with questions about this opportunity should email Jonathan Walsh at [email protected].

The Emerging Powers Project Team of the Think Tanks and Civil Societies Program is searching for research assistants able to do global research project. Specifically we are seeking students with library research skills who can review books, journal articles and relevant publications and then draft a literature review on the topic of think tanks and foreign policy in emerging powers. Additionally, the Emerging Powers Team is searching for a copy editor who is able to review written material to ensure quality in terms of content related to the literature and overarching themes and goals of the project.

Asia Project Team of the Think Tanks and Civil Societies Program at the University of Pennsylvania is looking for interns who can collect data and help conduct research countries in Asia. We'd like a few interns to assist with a major project that will be presented at the Asia Development Bank, research interns will examine think tanks in Japan, China, India, Singapore, Australia, with preference given to those who can do research in Chinese, Japanese, and Hindi. 

Web Team of the Think Tanks and Civil Societies Program at the University of Pennsylvania is looking for an unpaid intern who can assist in updating and maintaining the CSIS website. Interns will be required to:

Liaise with TTCSP project teams to ensure online content is updated in a timely fashion.

Monitor new and existing online content to ensure it is consistent with CSIS style guidelines.

Work with TTCSP project teams to create multimedia content related to their research, events, and publications

Successful applicants should be a full time student or gap year (recent graduate).  Must demonstrate attention to detail, have the ability to manage competing priorities, and independently fix problems related to website editing. Thorough understanding of the web, basic HTML, understanding of web based Content Management Systems (CMS), Photoshop, multimedia technologies, and standard multimedia conventions are preferred.  Applicants must possess strong interpersonal skills and be able to operate in a team environment.  An interest or background in public policy or international relations is also preferred.

Think Tanks and Civil Societies Program (TTCSP)

The Think Tanks and Civil Societies Program (TTCSP) at the Lauder Institute, University of Pennsylvania conducts research on the role policy institutes play in governments and civil societies around the world. TTCSP was established in 1989. The Program maintains a database and network of over 7000 think tanks in 169 countries. Often referred to as the “think tanks’ think tank,” TTCSP examines the evolving role and character of public policy research organizations. Over the last 25 years, the Program has developed and led a series of global initiatives that have helped bridge the gap between knowledge and policy in critical policy areas such as international peace and security, globalization and governance, international economics, environmental issues, information and society, poverty alleviation, and healthcare/global health.

These international collaborative efforts are designed to establish regional and international networks of policy institutes and communities that improve policy making while strengthening democratic institutions and civil societies around the world. TTCSP works with leading scholars and practitioners from think tanks and universities in a variety of collaborative efforts and programs. TTCSP produces the annual Global Go To Think Tank Index that ranks the world’s leading think tanks in a variety of categories. This is achieved with the help of a panel of over 1,900 peer institutions and experts from the print and electronic media, academia, public and private donor institutions, and governments around the world. TTCSP has strong relationships with leading think tanks around the world and its annual Think Tank Index is used by academics, journalists, donors and the public to locate and connect with the leading centers of public policy research around the world. TTCSP’s goal is to increase the profile and performance of think tanks and raise the public awareness of the important role think tanks play in governments and civil societies around the globe.

Since its inception in 1989 TTCSP has focused on collecting data and conducting research on think tank trends and the role think tanks play as civil society actors in the policymaking process. In 2007 TTCSP developed and launched the global index of think tank which is designed to identify and recognize centers of excellence in all the major areas of public policy research and in every region of the world. To date TTSCP has provided technical assistance and capacity building programs in 81 countries. The TTCSP is now working to create regional and global networks of think tanks in an effort to facilitate collaboration and the production of a modest yet achievable set of global public goods.  Our goal is to create lasting institutional and state-level partnerships by engaging and mobilizing think tanks that have demonstrated their ability to produce high quality policy research and shape popular and elite opinion and actions for public good.