Think tanks and research organizations focus on a variety of cross-cutting international and domestic issues like security, health, tax policy, environmental issues, food security, human rights, and many more. These organizations are often supported by governments, foundations, businesses, and endowments.
Think tankers with a BA or an MA can expect employment mainly in administrative positions, though some research opportunities are available. Administrative positions assist with coordinating and managing events and publications sponsored by think tanks. More substantial research positions in a think tank generally require a doctoral degree.
Higher education and experience in the field is generally required for substantive research positions. Strong communication skills, both written and oral, are essential One must be able to write concise briefing reports as well as longer academic works. Presentation skills are also important, as is comfort in addressing an audience of experts. Competitive candidates will also be able to demonstrate proficiency in foreign languages and will have a solid command of word processing and spreadsheet applications and the Internet. Advanced writing and reading skills in foreign languages is a key advantage in getting the job. Many positions require solid quantitative skills and knowledge of statistical packages.