Employment

Opportunities at ISW

Internships

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Internships
 
 

Applications for Summer 2018 internships at the Institute for the Study of War are now being accepted. You may submit your application immediately. We will consider applications on a rolling basis until all positions are filled. We will begin considering applications immediately.

For all positions, we greatly prefer full-time availability although part-time interns may also be accepted depending on qualifications.

 

All internships are unpaid. ISW does not sponsor visas of any kind for international students.

 

To submit your application, please go to https://understandingwar.bamboohr.com/jobs/

 

Required documents: Resume, Cover Letter, Writing Sample (no longer than 5 pages; can be an excerpt from a longer paper). Please include your writing sample in the SAME DOCUMENT as your cover letter.

Please only submit one application – if you are interested in multiple positions, please list them in rank order at the top of your cover letter.

 

Why work for ISW: ISW believes ground realities must drive the formulation of strategy and policy. In pursuit of this principle, ISW conducts detailed, open-source intelligence analysis to provide the most accurate information on current conflicts and security threats. We offer interns a chance to train on work with cutting-edge technologies employed in business and in the intelligence community. Interns at ISW will have an unparalleled opportunity to conduct research that directly informs policy-makers on some of the most pressing issues facing American national security. Our interns work directly with analysts and have many opportunities to engage with Institute leadership on the subjects of their research. ISW offers its interns the chance to be at the front lines of military research and policy, tackling the issues that are in the headlines. ISW has published the work of its interns and hired many onto its staff.

 

Research Internship – Iraq Project

ISW’s Iraq Project is its original, flagship program and has an outstanding history and reputation.  ISW publishes regular research reports on Iraq in order to inform policy makers and journalists in Washington, DC, as well as the general public.  The Iraq program examines the resurgence of the Islamic State of Iraq and al-Sham (ISIS), the spillover between Iraq and Syria, Iraq’s internal politics, Iraq’s military and paramilitary organizations, and Iraq’s foreign relations. Interns will provide critical assistance to our researchers. Interns will be trained to use innovative technologies to assist their research. Interns are expected to conduct research under the guidance of Research Analysts and Assistants; work in conjunction with other members of the research staff to produce research briefs and analysis; assist with editing, documenting, and supporting materials for products of the Institute; assist with the planning, preparation, and execution of public events and private briefings of employees of the Institute; and conduct other activities in support of Institute projects.

Qualifications: The ideal candidate will be a recent graduate or current undergraduate with coursework in a field of study related to ISW’s core mission and research agenda. Graduate-level coursework in a related field is a plus. Interns with the ability to read and conduct research in Arabic are highly desired, as is knowledge of Iraq. Candidates should have excellent writing and analytical skills, and the ability to conduct research using social media and other open sources. Ideal candidates should also have the ability to conduct tasks in a timely and efficient manner.  The candidate must also possess an interest in and enthusiasm for ISW’s research agenda and mission.

Iraq Interns report to the Iraq Research Analysts and Research Manager.

 

Research Internship – Afghanistan Project

ISW’s Afghanistan Project publishes regular research reports on Afghanistan’s security situation and political developments in order to inform policy makers and journalists in Washington, DC, as well as the general public. The program studies the intricate dynamics of Afghan politics, warlords, and powerbrokers. The program also tracks the threats posed by groups such as the Taliban, ISIS, and al Qaeda. Interns will provide critical assistance to our researchers. Interns are expected to conduct research under the guidance of the Afghanistan Research Analyst; work in conjunction with other members of the research staff to produce research briefs and analysis; assist with editing, documenting, and supporting materials for products of the Institute; assist with the planning, preparation, and execution of public events and private briefings of employees of the Institute; and conduct other activities in support of Institute projects.

Qualifications: The ideal candidate will be a recent graduate or current undergraduate with coursework in a field of study related to the ISW’s core mission and research agenda. Graduate-level coursework in a related field is a plus, as is familiarity with Afghanistan. Candidates should have excellent writing and analytical skills, and the ability to conduct research. Ideal candidates should also have the ability to conduct tasks in a timely and efficient manner.  The candidate must also possess an interest in and enthusiasm for ISW’s research agenda and mission. Interns with the ability to read the Farsi, Dari, or Pashto language and to conduct research in one of those languages are highly desired, but not required.

 

Interns report to the Internship Coordinator and their Research Analysts.

 

Research Intern—Syria Project

ISW’s Syria project has become a leading source of innovative analysis and information about the Syrian Civil War. ISW publishes regular research reports and maps on the conflict in Syria in order to inform policy makers and journalists in Washington, DC, as well as the general public. The Syria program examines the dynamics among domestic actors in the Syrian Civil War, including the regime and the opposition; the role of foreign actors in the conflict, particularly Russia and Iran; the activities of ISIS and Al-Qaeda in Syria; and spillover into neighboring states, including Lebanon, Turkey, and Jordan. Interns will provide critical assistance to our researchers. Interns will be trained to use innovative technologies to assist their research, as Syrian social media is a key source of information on this conflict. Interns are expected to conduct research under the guidance of Research Analysts; work in conjunction with other members of the research staff to produce research briefs and analysis; assist with editing, documenting, and supporting materials for products of the Institute; assist with the planning, preparation, and execution of public events and private briefings of employees of the Institute; and conduct other activities in support of Institute projects.

Qualifications:  The ideal candidate will be a recent graduate or current undergraduate with coursework in a field of study related to the ISW’s core mission and research agenda. Graduate-level coursework in a related field is a plus, as is familiarity with Syria. Candidates should have excellent writing and analytical skills, and the ability to conduct research using social media and open sources. Ideal candidates should also have the ability to conduct tasks in a timely and efficient manner. The candidate must also possess an interest in and enthusiasm for ISW’s research agenda and mission. Interns with the ability to read and conduct research in Arabic, Kurdish, Turkish, or Farsi are highly desired.

Syria Interns report to the Research Analysts and Research Manager.

 

Research Internship – Turkey

The Institute for the Study of War is seeking motivated and experienced university students or recent graduates to fill the position of Turkey Research Intern. The research intern will be responsible for reviewing open source data in Turkish to support our various research teams, with a focus on the Syrian conflict and Russo-Turkish relations. The research intern will have the opportunity to collect and analyze data from traditional and social media sources and will be trained to use analytic software to better inform ISW’s already groundbreaking research. The research intern should be a self-starter able to identify critical inflections and trends, but (s)he will also have the opportunity to work under a research team.

Qualifications: The ideal candidate will be a recent graduate or current undergraduate with coursework in a field of study related to ISW’s core mission and research agenda. Graduate-level coursework in a related field is a plus. The ability to read and conduct research in Turkish is highly desired. Candidates should have at least intermediate fluency in Turkish. Candidates should have excellent writing and analytical skills, and the ability to conduct research using social media and other open sources. Ideal candidates should also have the ability to conduct tasks in a timely and efficient manner.  The candidate must also possess an interest in and enthusiasm for ISW’s research agenda and mission.


Research Intern—Egypt Security Project

ISW is expanding its research into the conflict in Egypt in order to inform policy makers and journalists in Washington, DC, as well as the general public. The project examines the increasing footprint of ISIS in the Sinai as well as internal political dynamics under Sisi’s rule. Interns will provide critical assistance to our researchers. Interns are expected to conduct research under the guidance of the Research Analysts and Assistants; work in conjunction with other members of the research staff to produce research briefs and analysis; assist with editing, documenting, and supporting materials for products of the Institute; assist with the planning, preparation, and execution of public events and private briefings of employees of the Institute; and conduct other activities in support of Institute projects.

Qualifications:  The ideal candidate will be a recent graduate or current undergraduate with coursework in a field of study related to the ISW’s core mission and research agenda. Work or academic experience in Egypt is also a plus. Candidates should have excellent writing and analytical skills, and the ability to conduct research independently. Ideal candidates should also have the ability to conduct tasks in a timely and efficient manner. The candidate must also possess an interest in and enthusiasm for ISW’s research agenda and mission. Arabic language skills are mandatory.

Egypt interns report to the Internship Coordinator and Research Manager.

 

Research Internship – Counterterrorism Team

ISW publishes regular research reports on the Islamic State of Iraq and al-Sham (ISIS) as well as other terrorist networks in the Middle East in order to inform policy makers and journalists in Washington, DC, as well as the general public. This portfolio focuses upon ISIS’s network inside Iraq and Syria, in the immediate region, and globally, and the research team produces regular maps and reports tracking ISIS’s global campaign. Interns are expected to conduct research under the guidance of Research Analysts and Assistants; work in conjunction with other members of the research staff to produce research briefs and analysis; assist with editing, documenting, and supporting materials for products of the Institute; assist with the planning, preparation, and execution of public events and private briefings of employees of the Institute; and conduct other activities in support of Institute projects.

Qualifications: The ideal candidate will be a recent graduate or current undergraduate with military or intelligence experience and coursework in a field of study related to the ISW’s core mission and research agenda. Graduate-level coursework in a related field or demonstrated network analysis experience is a plus. Candidates should have excellent writing and analytical skills, the ability to conduct research, and desire to use technology. Familiarity Palantir or other analytical visualization software platforms is preferred. Ideal candidates should also have the ability to conduct tasks in a timely and efficient manner.  The candidate must also possess an interest in and enthusiasm for ISW’s research agenda and mission. Interns with the ability to read and conduct research in Arabic are highly desired.

The Counterterrorism Interns will report to the Research Analysts and Research Manager.

 

Research Internship –Russia and Ukraine Project

ISW’s Russia-Ukraine team focuses on innovative analysis and open-source research on current and potential zones of conflict in Eastern Europe and Eurasia developments in order to inform policy makers and journalists in Washington, DC, as well as the general public. This project utilizes unclassified information on military operations and political actors in order to provide expert, in-depth analysis about security issues affecting the region, including Russian intent and capabilities, the intent and capabilities of the Ukrainian government, the potential for political crisis in Kyiv, and Russia’s ongoing intervention in Syria. Interns will provide critical research and analytical assistance to our team. Interns will be trained to use innovative technologies to assist their research, and to gather information from social media as a key source of information on this conflict in order to assist in this research. ISW will be expanding a series of publications and graphical products to inform policy makers and journalists in Washington, DC, as well as the general public. Interns are expected to conduct research under the guidance of Research Analysts and Assistance; work in conjunction with other members of the research staff to produce research briefs and analysis; assist with editing, documenting, and supporting materials for products of the Institute; assist with the planning, preparation, and execution of public events and private briefings of employees of the Institute; and conduct other activities in support of Institute projects.

Qualifications:  The ideal candidate will be a recent graduate or current undergraduate with coursework in a field of study related to the ISW’s core mission and research agenda. Graduate-level coursework in a related field is a plus, as is familiarity with Ukraine and/or Russia. Candidates should have excellent writing and analytical skills, and the ability to conduct research using social media and open sources. Ideal candidates should also have the ability to conduct tasks in a timely and efficient manner. The candidate must also possess an interest in and enthusiasm for ISW’s research agenda and mission. Interns with the ability to read and conduct research in Russian or Ukrainian are highly desired.

Russia/Ukraine Interns report to the Ukraine Research Analyst and Research Manager.

 

Research Internship – Russia in the Middle East and North Africa

ISW is expanding its research into Russia’s activities in the wider Middle East and North Africa (MENA) region in order to inform policy makers and journalists in Washington, DC, as well as the general public. The project examines the increasing military, diplomatic, and economic involvement of Russia in MENA. Interns are expected to conduct research under the guidance of the Research Analysts and Assistants; work in conjunction with other members of the research staff to produce research briefs and analysis; assist with editing, documenting, and supporting materials for products of ISW; assist with the planning, preparation, and execution of public events and private briefings of employees of ISW; and conduct other activities in support of ISW projects.

Qualifications: The ideal candidate will be a recent graduate or current undergraduate with coursework in a field of study related to the ISW’s core mission and research agenda. Graduate-level coursework in a related field is a plus, as is familiarity with Russia and/or the Middle East. Candidates should have excellent writing and analytical skills, and the ability to conduct research independently. Ideal candidates should also have the ability to conduct tasks in a timely and efficient manner. The candidate must also possess an interest in and enthusiasm for ISW’s research agenda and mission. Russian language skills are mandatory. The ability to also read and conduct research in Arabic is highly desired.

 

Russia in the Middle East and North Africa interns report to the Internship Coordinator and Research Manager.

 

Turkish Linguist Internship

The Institute for the Study of War is seeking motivated and experienced university students or recent graduates to fill the position of Turkish Linguist Intern. The linguist will be responsible for reviewing open source data in Turkish to support our various research teams, with a focus on the Syrian conflict and Russo-Turkish relations. The linguist will have the opportunity to collect and analyze data from traditional and social media sources and will be trained to use analytic software to better inform ISW’s already groundbreaking research. The linguist should be a self-starter able to identify critical inflections and trends, but (s)he will also have the opportunity to work under a research team.

Qualifications: The ideal candidate will be a recent graduate or current undergraduate with coursework in a field of study related to ISW’s core mission and research agenda. Graduate-level coursework in a related field is a plus. The ability to read and conduct research in Turkish is mandatory. Candidates should have excellent writing and analytical skills, and the ability to conduct research using social media and other open sources. Ideal candidates should also have the ability to conduct tasks in a timely and efficient manner.  The candidate must also possess an interest in and enthusiasm for ISW’s research agenda and mission.

 

Kurdish Linguist Internship

The Institute for the Study of War is seeking motivated and experienced university students or recent graduates to fill the position of Kurdish Linguist Intern. The linguist will be responsible for reviewing open source data in Kurmanji and / or Sorani to support our various research teams with a focus on Syria, Iraq, and Turkey. Potential research areas include the Syrian Democratic Forces (SDF) in Northern Syria, the Kurdistan Regional Government in Iraq, and the wider regional network of the Kurdistan Workers’ Party (PKK). The linguist will have the opportunity to collect and analyze data from traditional and social media sources; leverage analytic software to better inform groundbreaking research; work in conjunction with other members of the research staff to produce research briefs and analysis; assist with editing, documenting, and supporting materials for external products and graphics; and conduct other activities in support of ongoing research projects. The linguist should be a self-starter able to identify critical trends and inflections but will work in close conjunction with Research Analysts on the ISW Syria Team.

Qualifications: The ideal candidate will be a recent graduate or current undergraduate with coursework in a field of study related to ISW’s core mission and research agenda. Graduate-level coursework in a related field is a plus. The linguist must have the ability to read and conduct research in Kurmanji or Sorani. Candidates should have excellent writing and analytical skills as well as a demonstrated aptitude for research through social media and other open sources. Ideal candidates should have the ability to conduct tasks in a timely and efficient manner with minimal oversight. The candidate must possess an interest in and enthusiasm for ISW’s research agenda and mission.

 

Farsi Linguist Internship

The Institute for the Study of War is seeking motivated and experienced university students or recent graduates to fill the position of Farsi Linguist Intern. The linguist will be responsible for reviewing open source data in Farsi to support our various research teams, with a focus on Iran’s role in the Syria conflict. The linguist will have the opportunity to collect and analyze data from traditional and social media sources and will be trained to use analytic software to better inform ISW’s already groundbreaking research. The linguist should be a self-starter able to identify critical inflections and trends, but (s)he will also have the opportunity to work under a research team.

Qualifications: The ideal candidate will be a recent graduate or current undergraduate with coursework in a field of study related to ISW’s core mission and research agenda. Graduate-level coursework in a related field is a plus. The ability to read and conduct research in Farsi is mandatory. Candidates should have excellent writing and analytical skills, and the ability to conduct research using social media and other open sources. The candidate must also possess an interest in and enthusiasm for ISW’s research agenda and mission. Ideal candidates should also have the ability to conduct tasks in a timely and efficient manner. Background knowledge of the Syrian Civil War and Iran’s use of proxies in Syria and Iraq is not mandatory, but also a plus.

 

Research Internship – European Affairs

The Europe program examines the increasing instability on the continent, including the rise of the far-right, the resurgence of ethno-nationalism, and the effects of mass immigration and terrorism, as well as monitoring the effects of Brexit, Russian aggression, and national elections in order to determine consequences thereof for American policy-makers. Interns will provide critical assistance to our researchers. Interns will be trained to use innovative technologies to assist their research, as well as exposed to a wide variety of news and media sources. Interns are expected to conduct research under the guidance of Research Analysts and Assistants; work in conjunction with other members of the research staff to produce research briefs and analysis; assist with editing, documenting, and supporting materials for products of the Institute; assist with the planning, preparation, and execution of public events and private briefings of employees of the Institute; and conduct other activities in support of Institute projects.

Qualifications: The ideal candidate will be a recent graduate or current undergraduate with coursework in a field of study related to ISW's core mission and research agenda. Graduate-level coursework in a related field is a plus. Interns with the ability to read and conduct research in German and French are highly desired, as is knowledge of the European Union and continental politics. Candidates should have excellent writing and analytical skills, and the ability to conduct research using social media and other open sources. Ideal candidates should also have the ability to conduct tasks in a timely and efficient manner.  The candidate must also possess an interest in and enthusiasm for ISW’s research agenda and mission.

 

Innovation and Emerging Technologies Internship

The Institute for the Study of War is seeking motivated and experienced university students or recent graduates to fill the position of Emerging Technologies Intern.

ISW is constantly seeking to utilize new technologies and partnerships in order to improve research collection and visualization. This position provides valuable, hands-on experience in marketing and communications as well as the intersection of technology, big data, national security, and defense. ISW also produces graphics and maps that visually represent the ongoing conflicts in ISW’s areas of focus. ISW seeks to remain at the forefront of technological innovation to improve its products and better inform its audiences. ISW Interns will be trained to use innovative technologies to assist their research. Interns are expected to conduct research under the guidance of Research Analysts; work in conjunction with other members of the research staff to produce research briefs and analysis; assist with editing, documenting, and supporting materials for products of the Institute; assist with the planning, preparation, and execution of public events and private briefings of employees of the Institute; and conduct other activities in support of Institute projects.

Qualifications: The ideal candidate will be a recent graduate or current undergraduate with coursework in computer science as well as a field of study related to ISW's core mission and research agenda. Graduate-level coursework in a related field is a plus. Candidates should be self-motivated, independent, creative, and demonstrate strong analytical skills, the ability to work in a fast-paced environment, and a passion for foreign affairs. Knowledge of HTML, Java, XML, Python and GIS software is strongly recommended. 

Duties include, but are not limited to, creating map products, automating online research processes, assisting with data management and curation, social media engagement, assisting our team on utilizing current technologies while pursuing new opportunities. 

 

Press, Media, and Government Relations Internship

The Institute for the Study of War is seeking motivated and experienced university students or recent graduates to fill the position of Press, Media, and Government Relations Intern.

The Press, Media, and Government Relations Intern is responsible for assisting the External Relations Department with updating ISW’s press and media tracker (excel document), and helping to create material for a monthly newsletter. The Press, Media, and Government Relations Intern will help assist the External Relations Director with press inquiries including inquiries from major media news outlets including and not limited to CNN, The Wall Street Journal, Fox News, and The New York Times. The Press, Media, and Government Relations intern will contribute heavily to ISW’s mission of providing timely and accurate information to policy-makers and war fighters. Among other duties, the Press, Media, and Government Relations intern will be actively involved with developing ISW’s outreach lists, coordinating events, and producing collateral outreach materials.

Qualifications: Candidates must be motivated, organized university students or recent graduates with coursework in a related field.  They should have experience with the MS Office including Word, Excel, and PowerPoint.   Experience handling phone calls and responding to external inquiries is preferred though not required.  Familiarity with international and national security topics is a plus.  The applicant must possess excellent writing and editing capabilities. Exceptional candidates will have commitment and interest in ISW’s core mission and values.

The Press, Media, and Government Relations intern will report to the Director of External Relations.

 

Development and Event Management Internship

The Institute for the Study of War is seeking a highly-motivated, organized, and creative university student or recent graduate to fill the position of Development and Event Management Intern for the 2017 Fall Semester. This position assumes responsibility for assisting the Development Director and President in initiating, implementing, and monitoring ISW’s development initiatives and strategic partnerships. The Intern will play an important role in helping plan and coordinate ISW’s two major hallmark events: ISW’s Annual Security Conference in Washington D.C. and the President’s Circle Dinner in New York. These events gather policy makers at the forefront of national security debate. The Intern will also assist with the mission-critical tasks of researching and developing potential strategic partnerships; drafting communications to prospective and current donors; developing new marketing materials; maintaining records and database information; and assisting the Development Director with tasks as required.

This position offers a unique opportunity for individuals with excellent communication skills and an interest in business development to enhance their credentials and gain valuable marketing, business planning and strategy experience. It is the perfect opportunity for individuals who want to learn more about working for a non-profit, as well as the intelligence, defense and think-tank communities, and are looking to make an over-size impact on a growing and dynamic organization!

Qualifications: Current students or recent graduates with an interest in national security, non-profit management, event planning, and/or marketing are encouraged to apply. Strong candidates will also have a commitment to and interest in ISW’s mission.

The Intern will report to the Development Director.

 

Presidential and Operational Management Internship

The Institute for the Study of War is seeking motivated, experienced, and creative university students or recent graduates to fill the position of Presidential Intern. This intern is responsible for assisting the President of the Institute for the Study of War, Dr. Kimberly Kagan, with a range of responsibilities in non-profit management. This intern will work directly with the President’s Executive Officer to assist in production management, special projects, and event coordination. The Presidential Intern will have the ability to work across different teams as well as attend some briefings and meetings with Dr. Kagan. The Presidential Intern directly assists Dr. Kagan on a daily basis and must be able to juggle responsibilities as well as be very organized and task oriented. Past interns to the president have conducted research projects, designed electronic material for publication, assisted with event coordination, and participated in development events. This internship provides a good opportunity to learn about team management and non-profit management in a fast-paced and engaging environment.

Qualifications: Candidates must be motivated and mature university students or recent graduates with coursework in a field related to national security, international relations, or history. Familiarity with international and national security topics is required.  They should have experience with the MS Office including Word, Excel, and PowerPoint. Experience with InDesign and Adobe Creative Suite is a plus as well. The successful applicant will possess excellent writing and editing capabilities and have commitment and interest in ISW’s core mission and values.

The Intern will report to the Executive Officer/Operations Manager and the President.