The Atlantic Council seeks a dynamic, non-mainstream intellectual entrepreneur to staff and build the New American Engagement Initiative (NAEI), an exciting new effort to challenge conventional foreign policy thinking, question tired assumptions in particular regarding military engagement, and help US government policy-makers to manage risks in decision-making and resource allocation in a manner that fits the times and is at the same time thoughtful and provocative. The initiative is housed with the Foresight, Strategy and Risks Initiative (FSR) in the Atlantic Council’s Scowcroft Center on Strategy and Security. The program gives us the wherewithal to deepen our work on strategy and America’s role and engagement in the world, one of the six defining challenges that the Council laid out for itself to tackle.
The NAEI is composed of a five-person team under Christopher Preble – alongside FSR Director Mat Burrows – whose mission will be to question core assumptions while producing policy and strategy papers that are unconventional, non-mainstream, and deliberately and productively provocative.
The successful candidates for this position will have an interest and experience in explaining US foreign policy and international relations, how to galvanize debates, and frame strategies, policies, and solutions required to maximize opportunities while minimizing risks of this exciting but also challenging period of rapid change.
The Senior Fellow will have substantial records of deep expertise, demonstrated superior written and oral communication capability and advanced leadership skills, as well as a strong background in the study of US foreign policy and international relations and a commitment to publishing op-ed’s and articles aimed at questioning mainstream views.
Successful candidates should have established networks of geopolitical thinkers and practitioners in the US foreign affairs arena, particularly US government, academic and think tank analysts, and decision-makers and a desire to continue to build this network. Executive and legislative branches of government experience are helpful.
The NAEI works collaboratively alongside others in the Scowcroft Center plus the Council’s other regional and functional programs and centers through dynamic outreach to and engagement with government, industry, foundation, and academic leaders. The NAEI team is responsible for building out the intellectual foundation for the new Initiative and growing it into a cutting-edge program.
NAEI will provide counterarguments in real-time to traditional policy proposals and offer a side-by-side refutation of the assumptions underlying conventional policies. The initiative also would offer unconventional thought leaders outside the Atlantic Council’s network the ability to publish their work and participate in conferences, workshops, and task forces. The initiative would hold conferences and workshops on a regular basis in Washington, DC for policymakers, scholars and their students, and the media, establishing the Atlantic Council as the “go-to” place for questioning the conventional, asking the difficult questions, and proposing concrete, real-world alternatives.
The position is located in Washington, DC, and requires occasional domestic travel.
- Intellectual Leadership. Play a leading role in developing the non-mainstream intellectual and policy frameworks that still advances the Council’s mission and programming through written work and speaking opportunities within and outside the Council; develop select issues in which the incumbent maintains a profile and is respected in the policy community for her or his thought leadership.
- Programmatic Design and Oversight. Help in developing programming for influencing policy and impact the public debate on US foreign policy and international relations in a changing world. Oversee implementation of multiple projects simultaneously.
- Business Development. Contribute programmatic ideas for NAEI, helping to craft proposals for funding that can generate financial support for new and existing lines of programming. Working with the Co-Directors and Office of External Relations, build the Initiative’s funding base by sustaining current financial support and pursuing additional support from corporations, international organizations, foundations, and individuals.
- Outreach/Communications. Represent the Atlantic Council externally with the administration, Congress, the diplomatic community and foreign governments, donors, media, etc., as well as at public and private events, international conferences, etc.