Research Associate, U.S. Foreign Policy
Seeking talented researcher to join the Council's Lester Crown Center on U.S. Foreign Policy
Chicago, IL 
Posted 19 days ago
Job Description
The Chicago Council on Global Affairs is where your world and the world meet. The Council is a nonpartisan, non-profit organization that empowers more people to help shape our global future. We are adding to the Lester Crown Center team to influence discourse and decisions on important U.S. foreign policy and national security issues by researching public opinion and producing original policy analyses. The Council celebrated its centennial anniversary in 2022. Do you want to help shape our next century?

The Role
To ensure that debates and discussions in the region represent the range of important perspectives on the role of the U.S. in the world, the Council has a small team within its Studies program focused on the concept of “restraint” in American foreign policy. This approach favors diplomatic engagement and seeks to limit the deployment and use of military force to the defense of core U.S. national security interests.

The Research Associate will work with the Senior Fellow leading this team to conduct original research, analysis, and writing on critical issues of U.S. foreign policy with particular attention to assessing U.S. national security interests, measuring the costs and benefits of U.S. military activity across the globe, addressing obstacles to civilian leadership of U.S. foreign policy, and assessing public opinion on military and diplomatic activity. The Research Associate will also conduct outreach with public audiences in Chicago, the Midwest, and beyond to expand the public debate and engagement on America’s role in the world, in coordination with the Senior Fellow and independently.

The Research Associate will research and produce publications, including reports, policy briefs, and opinion pieces, and tailor and disseminate this information to different target audiences. The Research Associate will have opportunities to participate in the discourse on restraint in U.S. foreign policy through writing and speaking engagements, offer in-depth analysis to Council members and constituents, and contribute to the Council’s digital presence and public outreach.

Chicago is the preferred location for this position, but remote would be considered, with requirements for in-person attendance for predetermined meetings and events. The Research Associate will report to the Senior Fellow, U.S. Foreign Policy.

Responsibilities include, but are not limited to:
  • Provide research support to the Senior Fellow, including literature reviews, data analysis, identifying data sources and tracking citations, fact checking, helping with qualitative interviews, and supporting peer reviews and consultative research processes.
  • Write, edit, and present reports, policy briefs, project proposals, meeting summaries, blogs, and op-eds, and critically review materials produced by the Senior Fellow and other colleagues.
  • Provide administrative and logistical support as needed, including organizing meetings, handling correspondence, handling publication details, coordinating with other Council and partner organization staff, and assisting as needed on outreach trips with Senior Fellow.
  • Collaborate with the Senior Fellow and communications team to design and carry out dissemination strategies through digital platforms, including obtaining data for infographics, conducting background research for podcast topics and guests, drafting content to use on social media, and managing social media outreach, discussion platforms, and newsletters.
  • Assist as needed with the presentation of research and publications, including creating complex graphs and charts, developing talking points, and compiling other related documents.
  • Stay up-to-date on relevant and breaking news, events, policy developments, and announcements; identify opportunities to highlight past work with current news cycles; and help build and maintain outreach networks.
  • Participates collaboratively with the Council’s diversity, equity, and inclusion strategies. 
  • Other projects as assigned.

  • 3+ years’ experience in research-based and/or policy arena working in government, advocacy, journalism, think tanks, or academia.
  • A master’s degree in a relevant global affairs field – e.g., political science, history, journalism, international relations, economics, public policy, is preferred.
  • Demonstrated experience in research and analysis, quantitative and qualitative skills, and experience with datasets and statistical analysis.
  • Superior verbal and written communication skills (editorial and proofreading), including the ability to communicate complex concepts and topics clearly, thoroughly, and succinctly; preferable experience with policy-relevant writing and Chicago Manual of Style.
  • Strong interest in foreign policy, diplomacy, U.S. military engagement, and the role of the U.S. in the world.
  • Familiarity with the Midwest is a plus.
  • Strong interpersonal skills with the ability to interact professionally with high-level stakeholders and experts.
  • Experience adapting content for digital media platforms.
  • Exceptional attention to detail, time management, and organizational skills.
  • Ability to work independently, meet deadlines, adjust to changing circumstances, and manage multiple projects simultaneously.
  • Knowledge of and experience using MS Office (Word, Excel, and Outlook)

We are an equal opportunity employer and do not discriminate on the basis of actual or perceived race, color, sex, sexual orientation, gender identity, national origin, ancestry, religion, age, handicap or disability, marital status, military service or veteran status, genetic information, or for any other reason prohibited by applicable law.

Our Commitment to Diversity, Equity & Inclusion

We are committed to weaving diversity, equity, and inclusion throughout the fabric of the Council, and we believe people — their identities, experiences, beliefs, knowledge, and ideas — are critical to our success and to global affairs. We will elevate diverse voices and identities and a full range of perspectives, advance equitable and inclusive access to exploring and shaping ideas, and ensure our organization reflects the diversity of Chicago, our nation, and the world.

To learn more, visit:

Vaccination Statement 

For the safety and well-being of our staff, the Council requires that all prospective employees submit proof of an up-to-date COVID vaccination and booster record or seek a reasonable accommodation for a religious or medical reason prior to their first day of employment.


Job Summary
Employment Term and Type
Regular, Full Time
Salary and Benefits
There are many benefits to working at the Council, including a flexible remote/in-office work environment, half-day summer Fridays, paid parental leave, employer-subsidized medical/dental/vision insurance, generous paid time off, retirement match, mobile phone stipend, commuter accessible, fitness center membership, and more.
Required Education
Master's Degree
Required Experience
3 to 5 years
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