Research Intern – Washington, DC (Fall 2018)

Access Now ( is a growing organization dedicated to defending and extending the digital rights of users at risk around the world. Our mission has us engage with issues of privacy, digital security, freedom of expression, transparency, and combating network discrimination. Our policy, advocacy, and technology teams have staff presences in Europe, Latin America, the Middle East/North Africa, North America, and South/Southeast Asia, in order to globally advance our mission.

About the position

We are looking for a research intern to join our global team, based in our Washington, DC office. The position will focus on U.S. state-level legislation and regulation.

Alongside our Washington, DC team you will work directly with senior policy staff and support us in analyzing and contributing to our work at the intersection of technology and human rights. The role is structured so that you will be immersed in a structured environment to foster growth and maximize learning potential, balancing mentorship and guidance with real-world experience and opportunity.

This role will primarily be focused on state-based legislative and regulatory research. Interns can expect to compile 50-state legislative surveys, compare legislation across states and jurisdictions, measure current and proposed legislation against human rights standards and international law, and provide detailed recommendations on proposals that support or undermine Access Now’s mission. Among other things, the research intern can expect to:

  • gain specialized knowledge in privacy and human rights law and policy;
  • work at the intersection of digital rights, consumer protection, and national security;
    receive mentorship and training from senior members of the Washington, DC-based team;
  • draft and publish memoranda, blog posts, and briefs for both internal and public consumption;
  • work with organizational partners across sectors;
  • develop insight into how international NGOs work.

In addition to your primary responsibilities, you will work directly with senior policy staff on various projects as the arise to support us in analyzing and contributing to international and national policy processes, advocating with governments and companies, building coalitions, and educating the public about important developments in privacy and digital security.


A successful applicant will be enrolled in or a recent graduate of law school or a graduate program in law, political science, international relations, or similar field. The applicant should have an interest in technology, digital and human rights, and political participation.

We prefer applicants for this role are well organized and detail oriented. Applicants should demonstrate research and writing skills. Please indicate on your application if you are fluent in a foreign language.

This position is based in our Washington, DC office. Remote applicants will not be considered due to the structure of the internship and the emphasis on mentorship and learning.

Time Commitment

  • We are flexible on term, but prefer a candidate who is available to work for at least 10 weeks;
  • We prefer a minimum of 16-20 hours per week, though can accept a full-time applicant if desired;
  • Internship carries a $600/month stipend

Application Requirements

To apply, send a copy of your CV or resume, a cover letter explaining your interest and qualifications for the position, and two references (An academic and a character reference) to Please place “Washington DC Research Intern – [Your Name]” as the subject line.

Deadline: ASAP with applications accepted on a rolling basis until the position is filled

Access Now is a 501(c)(3) nonprofit organization and international NGO registered in New York and California. We are an equal opportunity employer. We value and encourage diversity and consider applicants for all positions without regard to race, color, religion, creed, gender, sex, national origin, age, disability, marital or veteran status, sexual orientation, gender identity, or any other legally protected status.

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