Research & Writing Internship

How To Apply

We recruit on a rolling basis. Please send a resume, brief cover letter, and a short writing sample (~500 words) on a social, political, historical, or educational topic that offers a strong coherent & compelling argument to apply@rdi.org. The writing style should not be overly academic—the point is to see how well you write something meant to be read by the public. Please also indicate your desired start date and hours per week in your cover letter. Only complete applications will be reviewed.

The Renew Democracy Initiative is an equal-opportunity employer.

About Us

The Renew Democracy Initiative (RDI) is dedicated to creating a movement based on rational discourse and political liberalism, both of which have come under threat from across the political spectrum. Founded by a diverse, cross-partisan group of leaders, including former world chess champion Garry Kasparov; Senators Heidi Heitkamp and Bob Kerrey; and Pulitzer Prize winners Anne Applebaum and Bret Stephens, we are committed to data-driven decision-making and combatting the twin threats of far-left and far-right radicalism. Our Board and extended network give us unique credibility and a global perspective as we educate people about core liberal principles and empower them to prioritize these values in their civic behavior.

We have a small, tight-knit team, so interns will have the unique opportunity to work on high-level projects and partnerships and make a personal impact on American democracy. As a start-up organization, we have an “all hands on deck” approach, and interns should expect to play multiple roles, handling a mix of substantive and administrative responsibilities.

The Role

This role will involve working on some combination of the following responsibilities. Please be sure to review examples of our work including our newsletters, Defining Democracy narratives, and videos prior to applying!
  • Drafting RDI’s weekly newsletter and other material
  • Developing concepts and writing scripts for RDI video content
  • Creating engaging online content that effectively captures key ideas
  • Authoring high-quality articles and reports targeting RDI’s audience
  • Writing clear & concise memos for the Board of Directors and staff members
  • Assisting senior staff with op-ed research & writing for mass consumption 
  • Working on special projects as needed

Qualifications of an Ideal Candidate

  • Exceptional undergraduates, graduate students, and recent grads should apply
  • Highly organized and uniquely detail-oriented
  • Politically well-informed with a strong belief in RDI’s mission and values along with a desire to promote liberal democracy
  • A clear, concise, and impactful writing style with an ability to communicate complex ideas simply along with significant research experience
  • Experience on Capitol Hill, a political campaign, or with a similarly-focused nonprofit/NGO is a plus
  • Open-minded and willing to interact with a range of often-conflicting political worldviews
  • Social, articulate, and a self-starter unafraid to take initiative with minimal oversight
  • Experience with Google Suite
  • Experience in one or more of the following areas would be a significant plus: U.S. politics; international relations; and/or government & democracy
  • While not required, proficiency in a foreign language (particularly Russian, Spanish, or Chinese) is a plus

Logistics & Benefits

  • This is an unpaid, volunteer internship
  • Academic Credit is offered upon school or departmental approval
  • This internship lasts 3 months during the summer, and interns can choose to work either full time (40 hours/week) or part time (25+ hours/week)
  • Hours are flexible and we are willing to work around your academic schedule
  • An opportunity to work closely with senior organizational leadership, including the Executive Director, as well as access to members of the Board of Directors, and other individuals from RDI’s extended network
  • A typical day could include spending a few hours on RDI’s brainstorming ideas for events; working on a donor outreach strategy; participating in a lunch-and-learn with a prominent political figure, a world champion poker player, or a global business leader; time spent working in RDI’s customer relationship manager; and informing RDI’s community about an upcoming event series

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