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Summer 2021 - Resource Security Program (paid)

New America’s Resource Security Program seeks applicants for a summer research internship. The internship will be part of a policy exercise to test a conflict prediction model being developed by the Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency (DARPA). There are three openings for five week paid internships (July 26th—August 27th, 2021).

About the Resource Security Program:

New America's Resource Security program looks at the intersection of security, prosperity, and natural resources, or "natural security." We seek to promote understanding and innovative public policy ideas, actions, and partnerships. For more information, please visit our website at

About the Project:

New America is collaborating with DARPA’s World Modelers program on this project. World Modelers aims to develop technology that integrates qualitative causal analyses with quantitative models and relevant data to provide a comprehensive understanding of complicated, dynamic national security questions. World Modelers analyses are intended to be timely enough to recommend specific actions that could avert crises, but also allow policymakers to test investments and ideas for efficacy. The first use case of World Modelers is food insecurity resulting from the interactions of multiple factors, including climate, water availability, soil viability, market instability, and physical security.

About the internship:

The research interns will participate in one week of training and preparation, including background research in relevant topic areas, followed by four weeks of user testing of the decision support tool. There may also be opportunities for contributing to blogs or reports on the project. This position is remote, but candidates should indicate whether they are flexible about possibly attending training in person, or working on site if that becomes possible.

Tasks and Responsibilities:

  • Attending all training sessions.
  • Conducting literature reviews and background research on key topics, to include peacebuilding, conflict studies, and food security.
  • Regular meetings with other testers, supervisors, and project sponsors.
  • Analytical testing of policy problem use case, with data collection.
  • Written reports or other materials on observations.

Required Qualifications:

  • Currently enrolled in or recently graduated from a Masters program in Computer Science, Statistical/Mathematical modeling, Public Policy, Security Studies, Diplomatic Studies, Conflict Studies, International Development, Agricultural Economics or a related field.
  • Excellent interpersonal skills and ability to work in a team-oriented, diverse environment.
  • High level of attention to detail and accuracy of work.

Additional Skills (a plus, but not required):

  • Familiarity with modeling complex social, economic, and natural systems, such as drought, famine, and food security.
  • Familiarity with qualitative and quantitative causal analysis.
  • Interest in national security and environmental issues.
  • Ability to communicate well, in writing and verbally.

Application Process:

To apply, please submit a resume and one-page cover letter explaining your qualifications and interests. Applications will be reviewed and accepted on a rolling basis through May 14, 2021.

No phone calls, emails or letters please.

New America is an equal opportunity employer committed to hiring a diverse workforce at all levels of the organization thereby creating a culture that allows us to better serve our mission, our employees, and our communities. We value and encourage the contributions of our employees and strive to create an environment where everyone can reach their full potential and drive outstanding results. All qualified applicants will receive consideration for employment without regard to race, national origin, age, sex, religion, disability, sexual orientation, marital status, veteran status, gender identity or expression, or any other basis protected by local, state, or federal law. This policy applies with regard to all aspects of one’s employment, including hiring, transfer, promotion, compensation, eligibility for benefits, and termination.

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