Call for Applications to the Research Internship Program – Fall 2021

Call for Applications to the Research Internship Program – Fall 2021
2021-06-01 Csenge Dobrai

The Institute for Foreign Affairs and Trade (IFAT) calls for applications to its 2021/2022 Fall Term research internship program with the objective of providing the participants with valuable professional tools related to their research, an insight into the work of Hungarian institutions operating in the field of foreign affairs, defense, and foreign trade policy, and, in selected cases, a platform for the publication of their work.

The research internship program of the Institute consists of a 12-week training module and a 6-week consultation period. The Fall Term program starts on September 24, 2021 and concludes on January 21, 2022.

TASKS  Research interns contribute to the work of the Institute at least twice a week (16 hours in total) during the training module (September 24 through December 10), and work on their research papers under the supervision of their mentors until the end of the consultation period (January 21). The training module includes the attendance of mandatory programs on Fridays, as shown in the draft schedule below. Apart from the Friday programs, interns report at the Institute as agreed with their mentors. Please note that this is NOT a virtual internship, however, we keep monitoring the public health situation and certain events might be moved online.


September 24 Welcome presentation by IFAT director
October 1 Introductory training
October 8 Research Seminar 1 – Methodology
October 15 Research Seminar 2 – Policy paper preparation
October 22 Research Seminar 3 – Policy paper preparation
October 29 Research Seminar 4 – Topic discussion
November 5 Field trip 1
November 12 Field trip 2
November 19 Field trip 3
November 26 Field trip 4
December 3 Small Group Workshop 1
December 10 Small Group Workshop 2
Between January 14 and 21 (tbc) Presentation of the Analysis Papers


ATTENDANCE REQUIREMENTS The total number of absences cannot be more than three. Events highlighted in black are obligatory to attend. In addition, at least two of the field trips and one of the Small group workshops are obligatory to attend. Noncompliance with the attendance requirements leads to the automatic termination of participation in the program. Please note that different requirements might be applicable to applicants outside of Budapest.

Research interns are encouraged to incorporate the skills and knowledge gained during their stay at IFAT into their own research. They will be expected to submit a 20,000-character analysis paper by the end of the program in English, corresponding to the regional/thematic scope of the flagship research programs of IFAT, which are: • International Trade, • The Euroatlantic World (incl. the USA, the EU, Latin America and the V4 countries), • The Middle East and North Africa, • The Balkans, Eastern Europe, the Caucasus, and Central Asia, • China and the Far East.

On meeting required standards of quality, the papers can be published as part of the KKI Policy Briefs. Interns will work under the professional guidance of a Research fellow of the Institute, corresponding to their professional interests. The fellow designated for mentoring will provide regular feedback on the intern’s work.

On request, research interns also:

  • contribute to the activities of the fellows of the Institute with research related tasks, e.g. data mining and analysis, research of scientific literature, project work, media watch and news analysis,
  • participate in the events held at or organized by IFAT, write memos and news articles of these events, and participate in the reception of delegations visiting the Institute, and
  • additional ad-hoc duties given by mentors.

Please note that the internship program is unpaid. The incorporation of scholarship schemes (Erasmus+, Visegrad Fund, etc.) is encouraged, where applicable. For field trips outside Budapest, IFAT will cover travel related costs for the participants. The successful completion of the program will be recognized by an official certificate issued by the Institute.

ELIGIBILITY  The research internship program is primarily advertised to students from Hungarian higher education institutions enrolled in programs in International Relations, Law, Economics, Philology, History, Political Science, Security or Area/Country Studies. The program is open to undergraduate (BA/BSc) students who completed at least 4 semesters of studies (prior to the start of the program), graduate (MA/MSc) students, PhD students, and recent graduates of any such program not currently enrolled in an institution of higher education, who are interested in pursuing research in the area of International Relations.

ELIGIBILITY FROM OUTSIDE OF BUDAPEST Students enrolled in Hungarian universities outside of Budapest are also encouraged to apply. Upon successful application, the Institute will provide them the opportunity to take part in the internship activities virtually, including research seminars and consultations with their mentors. Participating in the Welcome presentation, at least two of the field trips and selected events are mandatory. Travel costs for these events are reimbursed by the Institute.

High-level command of English is expected; skills in other languages, corresponding to the volunteer’s field of interest, are appreciated.

APPLICATION  Applicants are required to submit (in .doc or .pdf format) their:

  • CV in English,
  • most recent thesis (“szakdolgozat” or equivalent), OR, in the case of undergraduate students, a university paper (e.g. seminar paper, TDK paper, term paper) that demonstrates the applicant’s capabilities in academic writing, AND
  • a research proposal in English (4,000 to 8,000 characters) corresponding to the thematic scope of the flagship research programs of the Institute (see above). Applicants are encouraged to narrow down their chosen topic to a specific problem inside the scope of the research programs. A model for the expected proposal can be found HERE.

Complete application packages should be sent to AND

Application deadline: June 27, 2021 (midnight, Budapest time)

Shortlisted applicants will be invited to an interview that is going to take place online between June 28 and July 16, by individual appointment. Results of the selection procedure will be communicated to all candidates by July 19, 2021.

Enquiries related to the internship program and the selection process should be addressed to Mr. Ferenc Németh at