Intern-Transnational Threats Project (Summer 2023)

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  • Added Date: Friday, 10 March 2023
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At CSIS we actively seek to employ a diverse group of people who embody our organizational values. We welcome and encourage individuals of all backgrounds to apply, especially those from traditionally underrepresented groups.

The Center for Strategic and International Studies (CSIS) is a non-profit, bipartisan public policy organization established in 1962 to provide strategic insights and practical policy solutions to decision makers concerned with global security and prosperity. Over the years, it has grown to be one of the largest organizations of its kind, with a staff of some 200 employees, including more than 120 analysts working to address the changing dynamics of international security across the globe.

The Center for Strategic and International Studiesโ€™ Transnational Threats Project (TNT) seeks highly motivated candidates for a full-time (35 hours per week), three-month (with the possibility of extension to six-month) internship beginning in April 2023. The intern will have the opportunity to participate in programs offered by the Abshire-Inamori Leadership Academy (AILA), the in-house leadership development program at CSIS.

TNT focuses on the threat and evolution of terrorist networks and the irregular activities of countries such as Russia, Iran, and China. Led by Dr. Seth G. Jones, director and Harold Brown Chair, TNT examines the activities of extremist organizations such as the Islamic State, al Qaeda, Lebanese Hezbollah, Shia militias, and far-right and far-left extremist networksโ€”including domestic and international counterterrorism efforts. TNT also analyzes Russian, Iranian, and Chinese irregular warfare activities, such as covert action, economic warfare, support to non-state partners, use of private military companies, cyber operations, disinformation, political warfare, and espionage. TNT conducts extensive fieldwork overseas, compiles and analyzes data sets, and utilizes satellite imagery and other types of qualitative and quantitative analysis. TNT also draws from an extensive network of policy experts from the U.S. and partner governments, Congress, academia, non-governmental organizations (NGOs), and the private sector.

This position will paid an hourly rate.


Essential functions may include, but are not limited to the following:

The intern is responsible for supporting the Transnational Threats Projectโ€™s research and administrative efforts. Responsibilities include but are not limited to the following:
โ€ข Conducting qualitative and quantitative research to analyze trends in local, regional, and global terrorist and non-state actor group activity, as well as irregular and asymmetric activity by U.S. adversaries such as Russia, China, and Iran;
โ€ข Using cutting-edge research methods to support written analysis, including but not limited to creating original maps, analyzing satellite imagery, and building original databases and datasets on terrorist and insurgent networks;
โ€ข Creating, maintaining, and utilizing geodatabases to draft maps that show conflict trends;
โ€ข Preparing detailed backgrounders on a broad range of transnational threats worldwide in preparation for Congressional testimonies, media interviews, and other external (public) events;
โ€ข Assisting the team in all aspects of event planning, promotion, and execution for public events and for internal (private) meetings and briefings with members of the U.S. government, private sector, foreign government partners, and others;
โ€ข Other similar duties as needed.


The position requires the following skills and experiences:
โ€ข Completed Bachelorโ€™s degree;
โ€ข 0-2 years of relevant work experience (including internships);
โ€ข Prior academic or professional experience conducting policy research on counterterrorism, counterinsurgency, and/or political warfare in the Middle East; North, East, or West Africa; Europe; and Asia (i.e., South Asia, Southeast Asia, Central Asia, or Russia);
โ€ข Excellent written communication skills, including experience copyediting and reviewing long-form (10-50 pages) written products such as commentaries, op-eds, and reports;
โ€ข Must be detail-oriented and well-organized, with demonstrated success working in collaborative team environments and proven ability to manage multiple projects and priorities simultaneously under strict deadlines.

Highly competitive candidates typically have one or more of the following experiences:
โ€ข In pursuit of a Masterโ€™s degree;
โ€ข 1-3 years of experience in a professional office environment;
โ€ข Quantitative data research, including creating, maintaining, and analyzing large Excel spreadsheets such as data from the University of Marylandโ€™s START Global Terrorism Database (GTD), Janes Terrorism and Insurgency Centre, Armed Conflict Location & Event Data Project (ACLED), or the ADL Hate, Extremism, Antisemitism, Terrorism (H.E.A.T.) Map;
โ€ข Creating and manipulating geodatabases, including working with QGIS, CARTO, Mapbox, and other open-source mapping platforms;
โ€ข Overseas travel or academic/professional experience in Africa, Asia, Europe, or the Middle East;
โ€ข Language proficiency in one or more of the following languages: Arabic, Farsi, French, Mandarin, Russian, or Ukrainian.


The physical demands are representative of those that must be met by an employee working in an office environment. Reasonable accommodations may be made to enable individuals with disabilities to perform the essential job functions. The noise level in the work environment is usually moderate.

Qualified applicants will receive consideration for employment without regard to race, color, religion, sex, national origin, sexual orientation, gender identity, disability or protected veteran status.

Affirmative Action/Equal Opportunity Employer


Please note that application instructions must be followed, otherwise your application may be rejected. Interested applicants should submit the following as separate documents through the online portal: cover letter, resume, writing sample (5-10 pages double spaced), and college transcripts (official or unofficial).

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