Friday 20 Apr 2018 | 11:14 | SYDNEY
What's happening on

Careers and Internships


2018 Michael and Deborah Thawley Scholarship

The Michael and Deborah Thawley Scholarship offers an Australian official, officer, student, or recent graduate an exceptional opportunity to contribute to the work of two leading think tanks, the Lowy Institute and the Center for Strategic and International Studies. Applications close at 5pm on Friday 20 April 2018.

The Scholarship

The scholarship provides direct exposure to the work of both organisations, at the intersection of research and policy in international affairs. The Thawley Scholar will initially work for a short period in the International Security Program at the Lowy Institute in Sydney, before spending 8–12 weeks in Washington DC at the Center for Strategic and International Studies.

Research to be carried out by the Thawley Scholar is flexible, but it is expected to place a strong emphasis on the regional and geopolitical dimensions of Australia’s strategic interests. Applicants should draw up a brief research agenda to be considered for publication. In Sydney, the scholar is expected to produce output for the Lowy Institute’s digital magazine, The Interpreter, under the supervision of the Director of the International Security Program.

The CSIS placement offers a rare chance to gain direct insight into US debates on global strategic challenges and policy responses, including opportunities to interact with the Washington foreign policy establishment and to meet with high-level policymakers and commentators, and then to apply that knowledge professionally upon return to Australia.

The successful applicant will receive an A$5000 award as well as a two-stage research placement, based first in Sydney and then in Washington DC. In addition to the award, flights, visa costs, and a small travel allowance are provided for the Washington placement. Domestic travel and partial living costs for the Sydney placement will be considered on a case-by-case basis.

The timing and length of the placement is flexible within the 2018 calendar year and a start date would be negotiated with the successful candidate. 

Eligibility Requirements

There is no specific professional profile for the preferred applicant, but a competitive candidate will typically be either a promising junior to mid-career Australian Government official or Australian Defence Force officer, or an exceptional postgraduate student with wider experience and demonstrated interests in international security. A knowledge of and interest in Southeast Asia is desirable. Please note, this scholarship is only open to Australian citizens and holders of permanent residency.

A list of past Thawley scholars can be found here.

Application Procedure

Applications for the 2018 Michael and Deborah Thawley Scholarship in International Security are now open. Applications will be assessed on a rolling basis, and close at 5pm on Friday 20 April.

Upon application, please provide:

  • A brief covering letter explaining motivation for application, detailing how the scholarship will help develop personal research interests and how it would contribute to future career development in an Australian context.
  • Concise CV, including at least two professional/academic references
  • An article or op-ed of no more than 800 words on a relevant topic. Candidates should familiarise themselves with Lowy Institute publications and The Interpreter, as a guide to the expected style and standard.   
  • Academic records, if the applicant is a current student or recent graduate (within the past two years).

Applications should be sent to Frances Kitt at Please note that only shortlisted candidates will be contacted.



Internship – Pacific Islands Program

The Lowy Institute is looking for a part-time intern to join the Pacific Islands Program from mid-May to September 2018.

The successful candidate will assist the program’s Research Associate with research on aid programs in the Pacific Islands region. Much of the work will involve collaborative, ad hoc research on this subject, including substantial data collection and analysis. There will also be opportunity for interns to pursue their own research in an area of the Pacific Islands region to be determined with the Research Associate, and to publish the results of their research on the Lowy Institute’s digital magazine, The Interpreter.

The internship program aims to connect talented international policy students and professionals with our research staff and programs. Candidates will typically be enrolled in, or have completed, the final year of undergraduate studies, honours, or postgraduate studies. Preference will be given to candidates with demonstrated strong English research and writing skills who are familiar with the politics of one or more Pacific countries, and with geostrategic issues in the region. A good understanding of Excel spreadsheets is essential.

Start date: Flexible, mid-May 2018 through September 2018.

Hours: Part-time, equivalent of two days a week (these can be organised around a student’s schedule). A small stipend will be provided to cover daily expenses.

To apply, please send a CV detailing work/academic experience and achievements (maximum two pages) and a one-page cover letter detailing why you are suitable for this internship to by 8 May 2018.


General internships

Our internship program aims to connect talented international policy students and professionals with our research staff and programs. You should be interested in contributing to Australian international policy, have excellent time management and administrative skills, think critically, write clearly, and capably manage independent research tasks. Typically you will be enrolled in, or have completed, the final year of undergraduate studies, honours or postgraduate studies. The availability of intern positions depends on the needs of our staff.

The internship program attracts a large number of outstanding candidates and is highly competitive. Our intern alumni include Rhodes scholars, diplomats, soldiers, journalists, and academics. If your application is successful you will work at Level 3, 1 Bligh St on a voluntary basis.

Apply now!