Space Sector Watch Research Intern

European Space Policy Institute

Internship 6 months Vienna, Austria

Uploaded 22 Oct 2020

Job Description

The European Space Policy Institute (ESPI) is looking to employ a Research Intern for a duration of 6 months at the premises of the Institute in Vienna, starting from January 2021, to support several projects related to ESPI space sector watch. 

The European Space Policy Institute (ESPI) is an association ruled by Austrian Law, based in Vienna, founded at its inception (2003) by the European Space Agency (ESA) and the Austrian Research Promotion Agency (FFG) and supported by members including national space agencies, the European Commission, and leading space industry companies. 

The Institute provides decision-makers with an informed view on mid-to-long-term issues relevant to Europe’s space activities. In this context, ESPI acts as an independent platform for developing positions and strategies. 

ESPI fulfils its objectives through various multidisciplinary research activities giving way to the publication of books, reports, articles, executive briefs, proceedings or position papers and to the organisation of conferences and events including the annual ESPI Autumn Conference. Located in the heart of Vienna, the Institute developed a privileged relation with the United Nations Office for Outer Space Affairs and with a network of researchers and experts in Europe and across the globe. More information on ESPI is available on our website: 

Research projects 

ESPI continuously monitors space sector developments through several projects: 

  • ESPInsights and the ESPI Yearbook provide a periodical overview of major developments in the space sector, covering policy & programmes, economy & business, industry & innovation and space launch activity. The project involves a continuous monitoring of news from different sources and a synthesis/analysis of major information in monthly reports and an annual yearbook.
  • Space Venture Europe provides insights on entrepreneurship and private investment trends in the European space sector. The analysis is based on a database of private investment operations and a survey of European space start-ups. A report is published every year. 
  • Observatory of ESA Member States provides information and data on ESA Member States’ space tradition and governance, strategy, budget and main capabilities. An update is performed annually. 

The research intern is expected to work as part of a team responsible for the conduct of these projects. The specific allocation of tasks and responsibilities will be done in accordance with selected candidates background, expertise and skills. 


Duties and responsibilities envisioned for the internships include: 

  • Actively contribute to these research projects: 
    • Sectoral watch, information and data collection and compilation in databases, stakeholders’ consultation through dedicated interviews or surveys;
    • Synthesis of relevant information in impactful reports, including production of graphs and infographics; 
    • Support to the continuous improvement of methodologies and analysis tools;
  • Support general activities of the Institute: 
    • Participation to conferences, workshops and other events organisation
    • Participation to ESPI daily routine and meetings 

The Internships may also involve a participation to other ESPI projects not listed above, according to the Institute needs.

Person Specification

For this internship ESPI welcomes applications from candidates with an educational background (at least 3 years degree) in political science, economics, international relations, engineering or business who can justify acquaintance with the space sector.

The following competencies would be considered an asset: 

  • General knowledge and understanding of space institutions, of their programmes and strategy and of the main political, technical and economic trends affecting the global and European space sector;
  • Proficiency in data analytics, preparation of impactful graphs and infographics and/or database management;
  • Previous experience in policy research, consulting or advisory; 

Applicants to the internship should demonstrate good interpersonal skills and the capacity to work both independently and as part of a team. Good knowledge of MS Office is required. 

The working language of ESPI is English. Excellent command of the English language, written and oral, is a prerequisite. A track record of articles, papers, thesis or reports written in English would be appreciated. 

ESPI can only accept applications by EU citizens or non-EU citizens holding residence and employment permit in Austria. 


    • UK National
    • EU National