Research Assistant, Asia-Pacific Security Program

Full Time

The Center for a New American Security (CNAS) seeks to hire a Research Assistant to support the Asia-Pacific Security Program. Candidates with experience in Asian strategic analysis and familiarity with U.S.-Chinese security and economic competition, Northeast and Southeast Asian politics, and asymmetric threats to the Pacific are strongly encouraged to apply.

The Research Assistant will be expected to perform a variety of tasks outlined below. The following is an overview of primary responsibilities; other tasks may be required and responsibilities will vary over time.



  • New project conceptualization and assistance with developing research methodologies
  • Literature reviews and in-depth research.
  • Participation in engagements with external experts and practitioners including (non-resident) adjunct fellows.


  • Project proposals and grant applications in coordination with the Center staff.
  • Op-eds, journal articles, and co-authored/authored CNAS papers and reports.
  • Short analyses such as blog entries and commentaries driven by the news cycle
  • Interim and final grant reports.
  • Project and event descriptions for external facing materials such as the CNAS website.
  • Formal invitations.


  • Research on and familiarity with potential funders.
  • Proposal development in conjunction with Center staff.
  • Budget generation and management in conjunction with Center staff.
  • Donor engagement and liaison.


  • Formulation of event agendas including themes and speakers.
  • Coordination of targeted email campaigns to promote events.
  • Management of RSVP lists.
  • Setup and logistics of events.


  • Content editing of CNAS papers and reports for substance, style, and layout
  • Coordination with outside authors as needed.
  • Management of team publication schedules and deadlines.
  • Collaboration with Center staff to develop compelling graphics and data visualizations.
  • Strategy development for promotion of research among target audiences.


  • Scheduling meetings and appointments.
  • Booking domestic and international travel.
  • Writing and submitting trip expense reports.
  • Maintaining program website with research project content.


  • Participate in interviewing, employee orientation, and other personnel processes.
  • Attend internal meetings and represent CNAS and the program at outside events.
  • Mentor colleagues, formally and informally.
  • Network, message, and outreach.
  • Staff CNAS events as needed.
  • Travel occasionally.

Qualifications and Requirements


  • Strong organizational skills and attention to detail.
  • Ability to work collaboratively with others in a fast-paced environment.
  • Demonstrated interest in Asia-Pacific security, particularly in U.S.-Chinese relations.
  • General familiarity with military, Defense Department, and national security terms and research resources.
  • Strong writing skills, including good grammar and diligent self-editing and fact checking.
  • Discretion, especially with regards to judging the quality of data and competing information sources.
  • Strong multitasking and time management skills, as well as an ability to juggle multiple projects and competing priorities.
  • Willingness and ability to maintain confidentiality.
  • Computer competency, including but not limited to Microsoft Office (Outlook, Word, Excel, and PowerPoint).
  • Legal right to work in the United States.

Highly Preferred

  • Experience researching, analyzing, and writing on Asia-Pacific security.
  • Experience researching, analyzing, and writing on strategy, economics, and politics in Northeast and Southeast Asia.
  • Degree in relevant area of study (e.g., political science, international relations).
  • Project management experience.


About the Asia-Pacific Security Program

The Asia-Pacific Security program at CNAS seeks to inform the exercise of U.S. strategic leadership and engagement across the world’s most dynamic region. Research on defense, diplomatic, economic, and other trends in the Indo-Pacific area help illuminate smart, pragmatic ways to compete and cooperate with diverse actors and identify emerging challenges such as transnational terrorism and cyber deterrence. Developing integrated strategies for preserving peace and stability in the region, particularly on the Korean Peninsula and in maritime Asia, are at the locus of program activity.

Projects also focus on modernizing traditional alliances, building the capacity of new partners, and shaping a growing web of intra-Asian security ties. The program leverages the rich experience of its team, deep relationships in the region and in Washington, and CNAS’ convening power to shape and elevate the conversation on U.S. policy across a changing Asia.

About CNAS

The Center for a New American Security develops bold, innovative, and bipartisan national security and defense policies which promote and protect American interests and values. Building on the deep expertise and broad experience of its staff and advisors, CNAS engages policymakers, experts, and the public with innovative fact-based research, ideas, and analysis to shape and elevate the national security debate. As an independent and bipartisan research institution, CNAS leads efforts to help inform and prepare the national security leaders of today and tomorrow. CNAS is located in Washington, DC.

To Apply

CNAS is accepting online applications only. Candidates must apply online using this link:

A complete application must include a cover letter explaining interest and qualifications for the position and a resume or CV. Writing samples may be requested.

All qualified applicants will be considered for employment without regard to race, color, religion, sex, sexual orientation, or national origin.