Science Policy Internship Opportunity - 2017/18

The Australian Academy of Science invites applications to undertake one of two three-month internships with the Academy’s Science Policy team. Interns will complete a policy-focused project in an area of mutual interest relating to the Academy’s science policy work, and will contribute to the day-to-day policy and advocacy activities of the policy team. This opportunity will suit a postgraduate student or early-career researcher who can write well and is interested in a career in policy.

About the Academy

The Australian Academy of Science was established by Royal Charter in 1954 and is one of Australia’s four learned Academies. The Academy champions, celebrates and supports excellence in Australian science, promotes international scientific engagement, builds public awareness and understanding of science and provides independent, authoritative and influential scientific advice. The Academy comprises over 500 of Australia’s leading scientists, each elected for their outstanding contribution to science and is supported by a professional secretariat based at the iconic Shine Dome and Ian Potter House in Canberra.

The internship

The Australian Academy of Science runs an internship program that runs four times a year, for a period of three months per internship. Two internships are offered in this round – one will begin in October/November 2017 and the other in January/February 2018. During the internship, the successful applicant will gain exposure to the policy and advocacy process through involvement in the work of the science policy team, as well as completing a policy-focused project on a subject of mutual interest. The intern will also gain exposure to a range of science policy and public policy issues.


The internship is open to applicants who either have completed, or are close to completing, a higher degree with a substantial research component (M.Sc, M.Phil or Ph.D in a scientific field) at an Australian university, or have a significant connection to Australian research. This opportunity would ideally suit a final-year PhD student or early career researcher considering a career in science policy, but all eligible applicants will be considered. The successful applicant will be able to demonstrate:

  • A high standard of written communication;
  • A genuine interest in scientific and public policy;
  • An appreciation of issues facing scientists and the wider community.

Demonstrated experience in multidisciplinary research would be an advantage.


  • The intern will be based at the Academy of Science in Canberra for the duration of the internship. The internship is expected to be full-time for three months, starting in October or November 2017.
  • The internship is a voluntary position, however successful applicants will be eligible for a stipend from the Academy to enable them to defer research or support themselves during the period of the internship. The rate of the stipend is approximately equivalent to an Australian Postgraduate Award: $7,000 for the 3 month period. Applicants are responsible for determining if this stipend is taxable in their own personal circumstances.
  • Current postgraduate students should include a letter of support from their supervisor regarding their ability and suitability to undertake an internship if successful.

How to apply

Applicants should be sent to, by COB Friday 15 September 2017 and include:

  • A cover letter of no more than one page
  • A concise CV highlighting both academic and general experiences
  • A short piece of writing in the style of an op-ed, discussing an issue of your choice related to science policy, or an issue of public policy with a scientific element (1000 words maximum)

Enquiries: Contact Dr Stuart Barrow, Senior Policy Analyst, on 02 6201 9464, or

Next round: The next round of policy internships will be advertised in March 2018.

© 2017 Australian Academy of Science