Tuesday 20 Apr 2021 | 16:58 | SYDNEY
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Careers and Internships


We're hiring a Research Associate for the Australia's Security and the Rules-based Order project

The Australian Government regards the promotion and maintenance of the rules-based order as a key element of its defence policy. But what is the rules-based order? What role does the concept play in Australian decision making? How can Australia help restore and strengthen the order? How should the order be modified to reflect shifts in power and new domains such as cyber, space and artificial intelligence?

These questions and many more are being addressed by the Lowy Institute research project on Australia’s Security and the Rules-based Order. We are looking for a sharp foreign-policy specialist to work part-time on this project.

The Research Associate will support the Director of the project on research tasks and will play a major role in organising and facilitating two national security crisis simulations as well as a conference on the rules-based order. Demonstrated experience in any of these areas would be an advantage. There may also be an opportunity to publish some of your own work. 

The successful candidate will have excellent event-management, writing and editing skills as well as tertiary qualifications in international relations. 

The successful applicant must be available to work two days per week. Additional days may be necessary in the lead-up to major events or publication dates. This position is based at the Lowy Institute in Sydney. 

Applicants should send a CV and cover letter to the Director of the Rules Based Order Program, Ben Scott (bscott@lowyinstitute.org), by 16 April. 




We're hiring a creative developer

Join a leading think tank and work at the forefront of digital design and data visualisation.

The Lowy Institute is an independent, nonpartisan research institution that informs Australian foreign policy. We strive to deepen the international policy debate in Australia and to give Australia a greater voice on the international stage. We produce world-class research and digital content, and host events with leading national and international figures in politics and the media.

We are looking for a creative developer-designer with 5-8 years professional experience (candidates with less experience but proven skills/passion are also encouraged to apply). The ideal candidate has the eye of a designer and the technical proficiency of a front-end developer. They know how to work with data and build digital products that work and look great across any device. They are a thoughtful and diligent creator who is attentive to both the big picture and the minor details.

About the role

The position is permanent part-time 2 days per week.

You will participate in the concept design and development of interactive features and microsites. You will work collaboratively with research staff and external authors to create editorial design solutions to accompany publications and blog posts, particularly maps, infographics and data visualisations.

You will have freedom to work (and experiment) with the tech stack you prefer – we are tech-agnostic and encourage learning and iterating.

Essential skills

  • JavaScript, HTML, CSS
  • Modern JS frameworks (Svelte preferred but not required)
  • Thorough understanding of SVG
  • Illustrator and Photoshop (or similar – Figma, Sketch, etc)
  • Solid foundations in UX, design principles, and typography

Desirable skills

  • Charting libraries (D3)
  • Data languages and tools (Python, R, Excel)
  • Mapping tools (MapShaper, QGIS, Mapbox, etc)
  • Data journalism and editorial experience
  • Backend development

This is a unique opportunity to use your creative and technical skills to bring important research to life.

This is an two day per week position, based at the Lowy Institute in Sydney. To apply, please submit applications though this portal by 2 April.



2021 Michael and Deborah Thawley Scholarship

Applicants for the 2021 Thawley Scholarship should note that the selection process will remain suspended until we have more certainty about the lifting of overseas travel restrictions. We will update this page when we have more information.

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.

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 in Sydney and 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 2020 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.


The availability of internships depends on the capacity and needs of our staff. Openings will be advertised on this page as they arise. Please note we no longer accept rolling applications.

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 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 in our Sydney offices at 31 Bligh St on a voluntary basis, with a small stipend to cover lunch and travel expenses. Permission to work in Australia is essential.