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HCSS Datalab Internship (OPEN)



Software Engineering
Posted on Friday, October 20, 2023

The Datalab of The Hague Centre for Strategic Studies offers an exciting internship to aspiring data scientists.

Our clients include major corporations, key government ministries, development banks, development aid agencies, and security providers, both domestic and global. The HCSS data internship therefore offers invaluable experience working on some of the most significant global issues of our time.

We review/accept applications for the Data Internship on a rolling-basis.

Candidates should either have a strong quantitative background or demonstrated affinity for all things quantitative. They should also demonstrate transferable programming skills, as well as a keen interest in the topics covered by HCSS policy research.


  • An affinity with computer science, statistics, mathematics, physics, engineering, econometrics, or a related field.
  • Fluency in Python
  • Very good communication skills in English, both orally and in writing
  • Ability to work independently in a fast-paced environment
  • Strong work ethic and willingness to learn
  • An affinity for policy research
  • Structured way of working, the ability to document your own work

The following attributes are considered an asset:

  • Prior experience with statistical and scientific computing, machine learning, and/or optimization
  • Data management and/or systems engineering skills
  • Prior experience with dashboarding, visualization, and/or web design and development (e.g., HTML, CSS, JavaScript, TypeScript, React, Angular) and server-side scripting (e.g., node.js)
  • Prior experience with natural language processing tasks such as named entity recognition or topic modelling
  • Prior experience with game theory and the implementation of game theoretic models
  • First-principles thinking

Prospective tasks of a data intern

  • Assist experts in the field by visualizing data (Tableau)
  • Conduct research
  • Collect and analyze data
  • Assist in policy development and recommendations
  • (optional) Basic software or monitor development
  • (optional) Implement game theoretic models
  • (optional) Professionalize Natural Language Processing (NLP) pipelines
  • (optional) Plan and write your own snapshot paper for publication or give a presentation


A data internship lasts six months. A shorter duration is possible only under exceptional circumstances. An applicant must be enrolled as a university student for the entire duration of data internship. Data interns should be able to commit to a forty-hour workweek. Successful applicants are asked to provide a certificate of good conduct (‘Verklaring Omtrent het Gedrag’), which is available from The Netherlands Ministry of Justice.

Frequently asked questions

Can I apply if I am no longer a student (recently graduated)? Data internships are for enrolled students. Without a proof of enrolment, which is valid for the entire duration of data internship, you are not eligible for an internship position.

Is it possible to do a part-time internship? At present, HCSS does not offer part-time data internships within the Data Internship Program for a work week under 32 hours.

Application Procedure

To apply, send the following items to, using ‘Data Internship/2023’ as the subject line:

  • A resume, including a list of references
  • A cover letter, thoroughly demonstrating why and how your data skills can be applied to data-intensive policy research and mentioning when you are available to start the internship.
  • Proof of university enrolment, valid for the entire duration of the data internship
  • An official transcript of academic grades
  • If possible: A portfolio of previous data projects, including the code (or a GitHub address).

Notes regarding the application procedure:

  • Please ensure that your application is complete before sending it in. Providing a list of references with contact details as part of your CV (at least two) is a mandatory requirement- we will not request them at a later stage.
  • The whole application should be written in English including the writing sample.

Practical Information

The HCSS internship is paid. Eligible applicants will be invited for an interview. Our most prized candidates are thirsty for knowledge, excellent with numbers, and can ace our data-science test.

In the interest of the successful candidate’s learning trajectory, the internship will be carried out at the HCSS office in The Hague. Potential working arrangements can be discussed during the interview process.

The HCSS internship is paid: € 675,- per month.

At HCSS, we firmly believe in prioritising qualifications and skills when making hiring decisions, without any discrimination based on personal characteristics such as race, religion, gender, age, disability, and sexual orientation.