We are looking for an experienced policy fellow who loves writing and building policy deliverables to mentor and support tech policy trainees at the Aspen Tech Policy Hub.
Aspen Tech Policy Hub
The Aspen Tech Policy Hub is a West Coast policy incubator, training a new generation of tech policy entrepreneurs. We take tech experts, teach them the policy process through fellowship and training programs, and encourage them to develop outside-the-box solutions to society’s problems. We model ourselves after tech incubators like Y Combinator, but train new policy thinkers and focus the impact of their ideas.
To date, we have trained over 125 technologists through our fellowship and training programs. Our trainees have already made a considerable impact on tech policy, from improving the use of algorithmic tools in Florida public schools, to proposing amendments to the California Consumer Privacy Act, to advising the City of New York on how to improve the provision of broadband services to help close the digital divide. The Aspen Tech Policy Hub is a part of Aspen Digital, an Institute program that empowers policy-makers, civic organizations, companies, and the public to be responsible stewards of technology and media in the service of an informed, just, and equitable world.
The Policy Fellow will primarily be responsible for mentoring trainees on tech policy projects, including providing guidance on project substance and editing project products such as policy memos and app demos. The Policy Fellow will also be responsible for editing public comments and other exercises trainees engage in while participating in Hub programming; mentoring trainees on careers in policy; and meeting with external stakeholders such as government agencies or company policy officials to promote trainee projects. Teaching experience is not a requirement for this role, but candidates with an interest in teaching may also have the opportunity to teach class sessions.
A portion of the Policy Fellow’s time (approximately 25%) will be reserved to work on longer term policy projects being undertaken by the Hub, such as the Diversity in Cybersecurity report we recently published. If time permits (especially when Hub cohorts are not in session), the fellow is also welcome to work on independent tech policy projects, but that is not the core focus of this role.
The ideal candidate is a multi-talented, mid-career professional with at least 2 years of experience working on technology policy; is able to balance multiple projects simultaneously; is an excellent writer; and has extremely high standards for the quality of their work. The role is a good fit for candidates who are transitioning out of a government or a company policy position, and are interested in using their expertise to mentor the next generation of tech policy leaders. This position requires balancing multiple activities, as the Policy Fellow may be overseeing a dozen trainee projects at once. The Fellow will work closely with the Hub’s Director and Deputy Director.
Qualified candidates must demonstrate: an extensive knowledge of policy and technology; exceptional verbal and written communication skills; impeccable attention to detail; and the ability to flourish in a fast-paced environment. Candidates can reside in any location, but must be willing to relocate to the Bay Area for up to 10 weeks in the Summer of 2022 to help lead our in-person fellowship program. The role is a one-year, term-limited position with the possibility of extension.
Candidates with experience in any area of tech policy (broadly construed) are welcome to apply. Candidates with an interest in or experience with climate policy, clean energy, and/or climate tech are especially welcomed, as our summer 2022 cohort will focus on training scientists and technologists in climate policy.
Essential Duties and Responsibilities:
Policy Project Supervision (50%)
- Provide extensive feedback on policy memos, public comments, and other exercises trainees participate in as part of our program;
- Provide supervision and feedback on fellow work products, including but not limited to policy memos, wireframes, and app demos. Specific responsibilities might include providing feedback on stakeholder maps for trainee projects, identifying relevant experts trainees might engage with, providing mentorship on effective advocacy plans for projects, and helping fellows revise policy problem statements;
- Help identify and coordinate tech policy projects with government or company stakeholders;
- Provide writing and design edits on fellow work products to ensure that all projects formally published meet high standards of professionalism;
- Shepherd policy products to completion, including by working with copyeditors, designers, and web designers; and
- Meet with external stakeholders such as journalists, government officials or company policy teams to help promote fellow work products and drive policy change.
Fellow Mentorship (15%)
- Provide extensive mentorship support to fellows, meeting with them on a weekly basis, assisting them with career plans, and connecting them to relevant technology and policy leaders as needed.
Curriculum Development (10%)
- Assist in revising training program curricula, working with the Director and Deputy Director to improve class sessions and activities based on trainee feedback;
- Moderate panels with tech policy experts as part of training programs; past speakers for our programs have included Tom Kalil, Ann Mei Chang, and Enoch Liang;
- Provide feedback on curricula for new Hub initiatives, such as executive education programs or topic-specific fellowships; and
- (If the fellow has teaching experience and interest) Co-teach policy sessions for our training programs that are focused on teaching technology experts the policy process. Sample teaching topics include: Scoping a Policy Problem, Stakeholder Mapping, Executive Branch 101, Legislative Branch 101, and Company Policy 101.
Research and Thought Leadership (25%)
- Support development of long-form Hub thought leadership pieces such as the Diversity in Cybersecurity report we recently published;
- Write quarterly articles for Tech Policy Press: New Voices (the Hub’s collaboration with Tech Policy Press); and
- As time permits, work on independent projects related to tech policy.
Knowledge, Education and Experience:
- Bachelor’s degree;
- 7+ years professional experience;
- 2+ years of professional experience or the equivalent working in technology policy or related field;
- Strong, demonstrable writing and editing skills;
Passion for helping grow and mentor the next generation of tech policy leaders;
- Superior attention to detail and ability to manage multiple projects;
- Professional and polished interpersonal skills;
- Strong interest in and passion for technology in the interest of society; and
- A desire to learn, sense of humor, flexibility, and resourcefulness.
- Graduate degree in law, public policy, business, computer science, information systems, or a similar field;
- 7+ years professional experience in public policy or related field;
- 2+ years of professional experience working in government at any level in the United States;
- Experience teaching large groups complex materials;
- Experience with mentorship; and
- An interest in or experience with climate policy, clean energy, or climate tech.
The Aspen Institute is an Equal Opportunity Employer and complies with all District and federal laws. All qualified applicants will receive consideration for employment without regard to race, color, religion, sex, national origin, or protected veteran or disabled status and will not be discriminated against.
Candidates must have the ability to work under pressure and handle stress. Candidates must also have the ability to meet regular attendance policies of the Aspen Institute.
To apply for this job please visit aspeninstitute.hrmdirect.com.