Jobs & Internships


Cyber Strategy and Policy Expert

Foundation for Defense of Democracies (FDD) has an established record for producing research on the cutting edge of counterterrorism, illicit finance, and economic sanctions. FDD is seeking a cyber strategy and policy expert to contribute to FDD’s new project on cyber-enabled economic warfare. The successful applicant will work with our regional and subject matter experts and will become part of a sought after group of thought leaders in this area.

The expert’s principal responsibilities will include:

• Identify cyber strategies and tactics of states and non-state actors
• Assess risks to U.S. national security and recommend a range of countermeasures
• Research emerging cyber threats and trends
• Research U.S. policies and identify gaps in government strategies and planning
• Co-author/author external publications (reports, op-eds, journal articles, memos) with forward-looking conclusions and recommendations
• Brief policymakers on trends and recommendations


• BA or Master's Degree with an area of focus in: cyber-security, foreign policy, or national security
• 5+ years working in the private sector or in government as an intelligence analyst and/or researcher with experience in cyber and adversarial strategy
• Experience in governance, risk management, and threat assessment
• Prior military, Department of Defense, Intelligence Community or high tech experience preferred
• Ability to work both independently and as a member of a team
• Willingness to interact with diverse groups within the USG Executive Branch, Congress, academia, and the private sector
• Strong analytical and writing skills a must

FDD is a nonprofit and nonpartisan national security and foreign policy institute devoted to independent research in the defense of free nations against their enemies. Founded in the wake of the September 11 terrorist attacks on the United States, FDD uniquely combines policy research, counterterrorism and democracy education, strategic communications, and investigative journalism to pursue the goal of a more secure future for America and her allies.

Interested applicants are encouraged to submit a cover letter, CV, and writing sample to Please include the cover letter in the body of the email and the CV and writing sample attached in PDF format. No phone calls, please. Salary commensurate with experience.

Deputy Director of Communications

The Foundation for Defense of Democracies (FDD) seeks to hire a highly motivated, energetic and entrepreneurial Deputy Director of Communications to raise the institution's profile on television and radio, develop relationships with regional media and identify external partners. S/he will identify unique angles and opportunities to position executive staff, experts and fellows as thought leaders; be tasked with forming strong relationships with bookers/producers as well as FDD leadership and staff to create fresh opportunities to present unique perspectives; and take pride in their accountability.

Qualifications include:

  • Minimum 3-5 years of experience in political, policy, association or nonprofit booking with major electronic media or as a booker/producer for the same
  • Superb attention to detail
  • Strong communication skills
  • Ability to work on tight deadlines and with the news cycle as required
  • Demonstrated discretion with proprietary and/or sensitive information
  • High-level critical thinking skills, sound judgment and calm under pressure

S/he will have a commitment to working within a flat communications structure and a strong interest in FDD's areas of expertise.

Interested applicants are encouraged to submit a cover letter and CV to No phone calls, please. Salary commensurate with experience.


The Foundation for Defense of Democracies (FDD) is seeking a receptionist. This position will further the mission of FDD to promote pluralism, defend democratic values and fight the ideologies that drive terrorism by providing excellent administrative support to the Operations Team.

This is a full time position reporting to the Administrative Supervisor.  Compensation will include full benefits and a salary that is commensurate with experience. This position will start immediately.

Job Description:

  • Monitor FDD’s mainline phone, handling all incoming calls and necessary follow up
  • Greet all guests with the utmost professionalism while following security procedures
  • Serve as the point of contact for space reservation and set up, assisting with catering orders and preparation of materials for meetings and events
  • Provide other administrative support including but not limited to handling incoming mail, maintaining an organized filing system of all vendor files, working closely with the finance team to handle invoices and outgoing checks, and processing all employee timesheets
  • Ensure smooth office function by ordering and restocking kitchen and office supplies, helping maintain a clean and safe office environment, and assisting FDD executive team, Administrative Supervisor and Deputy Director of Operations as needed

Job Requirements:

  • Bachelor’s degree or equivalent work experience required.
  • Excellent written, verbal, and interpersonal skills.
  • Possess excellent organizational skills and the ability to prioritize and multi-task.
  • Be detail oriented, highly motivated, and proactive.
  • Proficiency in Microsoft Office.
  • Interest in foreign policy and national security is a plus.

How to Apply:

Interested candidates should send a resume and cover letter to Kristin Smoot at with the subject line “(First and last name) – Receptionist.”



About FDD’s Internship Program

Based in downtown Washington, D.C., the Foundation for Defense of Democracies has a number of internship opportunities available.  All FDD interns will have the opportunity to participate in a twice-monthly speaker series, which brings high-level DC officials and senior staff members to engage with interns in an intimate setting.  FDD interns will be encouraged to build on their academic skills by working closely with senior staff.  FDD is also happy to assist students who wish to earn academic credit for this internship.   All internships are unpaid.

Applications will be considered on a rolling basis.  It is recommended that interested candidates submit applications early.


  • Must be at least a college junior (third year) in good standing.
  • Must have at least a 3.2 GPA (on a 4.0 scale).
  • Should have a relevant course of study and have completed coursework in any of the following fields: International Relations, Security Studies, History, Communications, Journalism, International Economics or Political Science.
  • Interns should have knowledge of Microsoft Office programs, including Word, as well as basic Excel skills.
  • Must be able to commit to a minimum of 22 - 40 hours per week.
  • Must be eligible to work in the United States.

Spring 2017 Internship Openings

1) The Center on Sanctions and Illicit Finance (CSIF) is seeking part-time and full-time interns for the fall. Interns will work closely with the Center’s Director of Analysis to conduct research on a number of critical projects relating to illicit finance networks and economic threats to US interests. Projects may include working to uncover and track terrorist financing, sanctions evasion, cyber financial threats, and organized criminal networks.  CSIF is looking for interns with research experience, and the ability to conduct research in a foreign language is a plus, but not required. Helpful languages include Arabic, Farsi, Korean, and Russian. Knowledge of cryptocurrencies and blockchain tech also would be helpful to assist with CSIF’s growing research on the potential illicit use of financial technologies. Duties may also include supporting CSIF’s news monitoring and social media engagement. More background on the Center can be found here.

2) The Communications Department is seeking part-time and full-time interns for the spring with an interest in foreign policy, journalism, communications and public relations, social and digital media, web design, and marketing. Interns will experience Washington’s fast-paced media environment and see first-hand how policy and media intersect. Interns will monitor the organization's media profile, help draft press releases, craft social media content, assist with coordinating broadcast interviews, market Washington policy events, and many other communications activities. At the end of the term, interns will have developed and diversified their skills to further their careers as reporters, public relations representatives, and Capitol Hill press relations staffers. Applicants must be hard working and eager to learn new skills. Strong writing skills desired. Knowledge of Microsoft Office is a must; experience with website content management systems and HTML are desirable but not required. Internship includes a great speaker series, career support and professional skill-building.

3) The Department of Special Projects seeks a part-time or full-time intern for the spring with an interest in foreign policy, journalism, and research.  The Department is looking for interns with research experience and strong writing skills. Interns will have an opportunity to conduct professional research and turn ideas into action. Interns will work closely with the FDD research team to conduct research on economic warfare, Middle East history, U.S. policy, and foreign policy. Those with an interest in Israeli-Palestinian issues and economic warfare are strongly encouraged to apply. The ability to conduct research in Arabic or Hebrew is a plus, but not required.

4) The National Security Program is seeking a part-time intern for the spring. An ideal candidate will have background knowledge and interest in national security and Middle East issues, with a focus on Israel and the Palestinian territories. Candidates will also have experience in planning and executing events, as well as a strong attention to detail and organizational skills. Responsibilities will include coordinating event logistics, assisting with member recruitment, researching suitable speakers for events in DC and Israel, updating and monitoring office databases, drafting event invitations, corresponding with event vendors, and staffing events. Candidates must have flexible schedules to work evening events when required and be proactive problem solvers.

5) The Turkey Program is seeking a full-time or part-time intern for the spring. The intern will work closely with our Turkey team, including former Turkish parliamentarian and FDD senior fellow Dr. Aykan Erdemir, to assist with research on Ankara's foreign and domestic policies, as well as its regional influence. Interns must have previous research experience and be able to conduct research in Turkish. Additional Middle Eastern languages, such as Kurdish, Arabic, Persian, or Hebrew are a plus, but not required. If there is a particular Turkey-related issue of interest to you, please indicate that in your cover letter.

Application Materials Required:

  1. Resume/CV
  2. Cover letter (Please review our website and include which FDD projects and issue areas resonate with you and why. Also indicate where you found this internship and your availability for the semester.)
  3. Writing Sample (no more than 3 pages)
  4. Unofficial transcript copy

Please specify the department(s) for which you would like to be considered (feel free to indicate preferences in your cover letter).  Incomplete applications will not be considered.

To Apply: In order for your application to be considered, send all application materials via email to Kristin Smoot, Intern Coordinator, at