Job Opportunities

Interested applicants are encouraged to submit a cover letter, CV, and writing sample here. Please include in the cover letter your specific interest in FDD. No phone calls, please. Any inquiries may be sent to FDD is a Washington, DC-based nonpartisan 501(c)(3) research institute focusing on national security and foreign policy.

Military Fellow


FDD seeks a full-time active duty U.S. military officer to serve as a Military Fellow in its Center on Military and Political Power (CMPP). The successful applicant will have the rank of O-4 to O-6 and seek to gain research experience on issues related to U.S. defense policy and strategy.


  • Conduct research related to the defense strategies, policies, and capabilities necessary to deter and defeat threats to the freedom, security, and prosperity of Americans and our allies;
  • Author or co-author on the above and related topics (both internal and external publications, including newspapers, journals, and online outlets);
  • Discuss research at events, both organized by FDD and in outside venues;
  • Work with appropriate FDD staff to plan and execute meetings and briefings, as well as networking and professional development opportunities for FDD scholars with Department of Defense officials; and
  • Support the day-to-day research and work of CMPP and CMPP’s Senior Director.


  • Active duty U.S. military officers between the rank of O-4 (Major/Lieutenant Commander) – O-6 (Colonel/Captain);
  • Commitment for 1-year fellowship;
  • Ability to work independently and as a member of a team;
  • Excellent writing, research, and analytical skills; and
  • Based full-time in FDD’s Washington, D.C. office.

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. FDD runs the National Security Network (NSN), a nonpartisan mentorship and leadership development program for mid-career national security practitioners. NSN is comprised of 400 alumni from the military, the executive branch, the Hill, think tanks and the private sector. FDD does not accept donations from foreign governments.

Senior Fellow (China)

FDD seeks a full-time senior fellow to focus on China. The successful applicant will be familiar with Chinese hard- and soft-power with a track record of writing for publication on both.


  • Conduct deep research and analysis on Chinese financial, economic and political warfare, cyber policy, and military activity.
  • Write for publication on the above and related topics (both internal and external publications, including newspapers, journals, and online outlets).
  • Serve as a resource for research and analysis to members of the policy community.
  • Discuss issues related to your research at events, both organized by FDD and in outside venues, including on television and radio news programs.
  • Testify before Congress and other U.S. government entities and international governmental bodies on your research findings when invited to do so.
  • Help to expand the reach of FDD’s research to appropriate audiences in the U.S. government, foreign governments, private sector entities and journalism.
  • Other duties and responsibilities that may be assigned.


  • Master’s or PhD in international relations, political science, or similar field.
  • Nuanced understanding of American policy making.
  • 8+ years experience in a relevant field.
  • Previous publications in books, academic journals, policy journals, or periodicals (please provide a detailed bibliography of your publications).
  • Ability to define objectives and execute research plans.
  • Research fluency in written and spoken Mandarin preferred but not required
  • Strong oral and written communications skills.
  • Ability to work both independently and as part of a team.

Internship opportunities

To view current internship opportunities, visit us here.

About FDD’s internship program

Based in downtown Washington, D.C., the Foundation for Defense of Democracies has a number of internship opportunities available during the spring, fall and summer semesters. 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.

Please specify the department(s) for which you would like to be considered (feel free to indicate preferences) in your cover letter. While you may use the same cover letter for multiple positons, please submit a separate application for each position of interest. Incomplete applications will not be considered. For general inquiries, email:


  • 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 hours per week.
  • Must be eligible to work in the United States.

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 three pages)
  4. Unofficial transcript copy