CISAC Fellowship Program
The application period has closed.
CISAC fellows (predoctoral, postdoctoral, and junior faculty) may focus on a variety of security topics, including: nuclear weapons policy and nonproliferation; nuclear energy; digital security (cyber, artificial intelligence and autonomous systems); biosecurity and global health; insurgency, terrorism and civil conflict; national security strategies; and global governance.
We welcome other research proposals, and we will consider applicants from the U.S. and abroad. CISAC welcomes applications from women, minorities, and without regard to citizenship. Applicants will be considered for all fellowships for which they are deemed eligible.
CISAC is grateful for fellowship funding from the John D. and Catherine T. MacArthur Foundation, the Stanton Foundation, and Carnegie Corporation of New York, as well as many individual donors.
Fellowship Opportunities by Research Area
Biotechnology Innovation & International Security Fellowship
Biotechnology Innovation & International Security Fellows focus on projects related to innovations in biological science and technology and their interactions with a shifting policy and international security landscape. Fellows will also be affiliated with Bio Policy & Leadership in Society (Bio.Polis) - a strategic initiative of the Department of Bioengineering in partnership with the Center for International Security and Cooperation (CISAC) at Stanford University. Fellows will be housed at and have the opportunity to participate in the larger fellowship program and community at CISAC. We welcome fellows from a wide range of backgrounds, including biological science and engineering, data science and the social sciences.
Fellows spend the academic year engaged in research and writing. They are expected to participate in seminars and to interact and collaborate with leading faculty, researchers, and military fellows. The results of the research should be published in the open literature - available to all. A long-term benefit of CISAC fellowship is the ability for our fellows to sustain these connections upon returning to their home institution by remaining active in CISAC's affiliate network. Natural scientists have the opportunity to conduct research on the scientific and technical aspects of security topics, as well as to work in collaboration with faculty members from a range of disciplines from political science to the physical and biological sciences. The CISAC fellowship provides an unparalleled opportunity for scholars and professionals to explore complex international problem and innovative solution in a collegial and collabortaive environment. It will hone the ability of lab scientists to work in the policy environment in Washington and beyond.
Natural Sciences or Engineering International Security Fellowship
Fellows with backgrounds in the natural sciences and in engineering may use their technical expertise from the public and private sectors, the national laboratories, and the military to: pursue research projects on the intersection of hard science, policymaking, and international security; and to hone their science communication skills.
Nuclear Security Fellowship
The MacArthur Foundation Nuclear Security Fellowships are intended to promote training and policy-relevant scholarship in three interrelated areas: nuclear weapons policy in a changing global context; nuclear terrorism and transnational flows of materials and knowledge; and nuclear energy and nonproliferation challenges. The Stanton Nuclear Security Fellowship is designed to aid in the development of the next generation of thought leaders in nuclear security by supporting research that will advance policy-relevant understanding of nuclear-related issues. They offer engineers, scientists, and social scientists the opportunity to focus on issues related to nuclear security. Alongside their scholarly work, fellows are expected to produce directly policy-relevant work, such as a media appearance, a published article on a reputable website, or a written briefing for a government or international organization.
Stanford Existential Risk Initiative (SERI) Fellowship
This position offers unique possibilities for impact for fellows dedicated to pursuing existential risk reduction, both in research and education. Fellows will have the opportunity to develop and pursue independent research agendas addressing large-scale risks across any of the four research areas (advanced artificial intelligence, biological risks, nuclear risks, and extreme climate change), with a faculty member appointed to oversee and facilitate their research. Fellows will also contribute to SERI’s mission by teaching courses centered on existential risk reduction, either teaching undergraduates and/or graduate courses that have been already developed, or by taking the opportunity to develop and teach an original course. Fellows should be enthused about both their research and teaching contributing to addressing large-scale, large-impact risks, and expect to spend 70% of their time engaged in research and 30% teaching. SERI Postdoctoral Fellow appointments will be for two-year terms, with possibility of extension. Fellows will be appointed under a faculty mentor, who will oversee and facilitate their research process. Fellows may also expect to have access to students and the rich intellectual life on campus, and may also play a role in and contribute to SERI’s programming if they so choose.
Social Media Lab Fellowship
Stanford Social Media Lab postdocs will pursue research on psychological, HCI, political, social, and policy perspectives of social technology. We seek fellows that focus on any of the following research areas: (1) social media and well-being, with an emphasis on young people; (2) misinformation, trust and technology; (3) AI-mediated communication and generative AI in social dynamics. Fellows will be housed at the Cyber Policy Center and will work closely with the research teams at Stanford Social Media Lab and the Cyber Policy Center.
Social Sciences or Humanities International Security Fellowship
CISAC fellows (predoctoral, postdoctoral, junior faculty, and professional) may focus on a variety of security topics, including: nuclear weapons policy and nonproliferation; nuclear energy; cybersecurity, cyberwarfare, and the future of the Internet; biosecurity and global health; implications of geostrategic shifts; insurgency, terrorism, and homeland security; war and civil conflict; consolidating peace after conflict; as well as global governance, migration, and transnational flows, from norms to criminal trafficking.
Questions? Contact us at CISACfellowship@stanford.edu.