Fellowships

International Affairs Fellowship

International Affairs Fellowship

The IAF program has produced approximately six hundred alumni who span the whos who of the U.S. foreign policy community, including a former secretary and several undersecretaries of state.

The Program

Established in 1967, the International Affairs Fellowship (IAF) is the hallmark fellowship program of CFR. It aims to bridge the gap between the study and making of U.S. foreign policy by creating the next generation of scholar-practitioners. The program offers its fellows the unique chance to experience a new field and gain a different perspective at a pivotal moment in their careers. Academics are thus placed in public service and policy-oriented settings, while government officials are placed in scholarly settings. Over the years, the IAF program has produced approximately six hundred alumni who span the who’s who of the U.S. foreign policy community, including a former secretary and several undersecretaries of state, U.S. ambassadors to NATO and the United Nations, and many other influential leaders in government, academia, and the private sector.

Eligibility

The IAF Program is only open to mid-career professionals who have a demonstrated commitment to a career in foreign policy. The program welcomes applicants from a broad range of professional, academic, and personal backgrounds. Although a PhD is not a requirement, selected fellows generally hold an advanced degree and possess a strong record of work experience as well as a firm grounding in the field of foreign policy. The program does not fund pre- or postdoctoral research, work toward a degree, or the completion of projects on which substantial progress has been made prior to the fellowship period. Qualified candidates must be U.S. citizens.

If it had not been for my experience as an IAF, I would not have been able to negotiate the New START Treaty. Working on START I in Geneva with negotiators Linton Brooks and Rick Burt and their teams was a formative experience, one I never forgot.
Rose E. Gottemoeller, Deputy Secretary-General, North Atlantic Treaty Organization (1989–1990 IAF)

Fellowship Award

The duration of the fellowship is twelve months, preferably beginning in September. The program awards a stipend of $105,000. Fellows are considered independent contractors rather than employees of CFR and are not eligible for employment benefits, including health insurance.

For those seeking to spend the fellowship year in the U.S. government, CFR will work with the fellow to identify a U.S. government agency willing to serve as a host. The placement is made at the discretion of the host agency and is contingent on the fellow's successfully obtaining a security clearance, which is granted solely by the U.S. government.

For those seeking to spend the fellowship year at an international organization or an academic institution, CFR will work with the fellow to identify an organization willing to serve as a host. The placement is made at the discretion of the host organization. A security clearance may not be required.

 
My IAF at OSD-Policy was transformational; it allowed me to serve my country and turn theory into practice, while inspiring my future academic research agenda and helping me build strong long-term ties in the US national security community.
Michael C. Horowitz, Professor, University of Pennsylvania (2012–2013 IAF)

Selection Process

Selection as an IAF is based on a combination of the following criteria: scholarly qualifications, achievements and promise, depth and breadth of professional experience, firm grounding in foreign policy and international relations, and an application proposal that focuses on solutions to identified problems in U.S. foreign policy. Applicants are encouraged to plan a systematic approach to assessing the major substantive and process issues of their planned research. The proposal will be judged on the proposed work’s originality, practicality, potential, likelihood of completion during the fellowship period, and the contribution it will make to the applicant’s individual career development.

The selection process is highly competitive. CFR’s Fellowship Affairs Office processes the applications, and the IAF selection committee reviews all applications to identify the most promising candidates. About one-third of the most qualified applicants are selected as finalists to be interviewed by several IAF selection committee members. Based on the overall application and the results of the interviews, the selection committee chooses approximately ten finalists to be fellows.

How to Apply

Interested candidates who meet the program’s eligibility requirements can apply online between July 1 and October 31 on an annual basis. 

2019–20 Fellows

Affiliations at the time of the award

Sarah Bauerle Danzman
Sarah Bauerle Danzman

Assistant Professor, Indiana University Bloomington

Lionel Beehner
Lionel Beehner

Assistant Professor, Defense and Strategic Studies Department, U.S. Military Academy at West Point

Annika Betancourt
Annika Betancourt

Acting Team Lead, U.S. Embassy Kabul, Afghanistan

Shannon Culbertson
Shannon Culbertson

Deputy Director for Korea, Office of the Undersecretary of Defense for Policy, U.S. Department of Defense

Rebecca Hamilton
Rebecca Hamilton

Assistant Professor, Washington College of Law, American University

Bradley Hart
Bradley Hart

Assistant Professor, College of Arts and Humanities, California State University, Fresno

Tiffiany Howard
Tiffiany Howard

Associate Professor, Political Science Department, University of Nevada, Las Vegas

Ashley Quarcoo
Ashley Quarcoo

Senior Democracy Specialist and Africa Regional Coordinator, U.S. Agency for International Development

Elizabeth Radin
Elizabeth Radin

Technical Director and Lecturer, ICAP, Department of Epidemiology, Mailman School of Public Health, Columbia University

Alumni

A list of former fellows can be found online by visiting the Historical Roster of CFR’s International Affairs Fellows.

Contact Us

For more information, please contact:

212.434.9740
fellowships@cfr.org