Summer Intern: Sustainable Water Policy in California

Public Policy Institute of California
San Francisco, CA, United States
Position Type: 
Organization Type: 
University/Academia/Research/Think tank
Experience Level: 
Not Specified


Please note: this job post has expired! To the best of our knowledge, this job is no longer available and this page remains here for archival purposes only.


PPIC’s Summer Intern Program provides an opportunity for undergraduate and graduate students interested in a public policy career to work in a policy research environment. Intern projects are proposed by PPIC researchers and designed around a specific set of tasks and deliverables that can be accomplished within the term of the internship.

For full consideration, complete your application by February 8, 2019. We expect to make our selection decisions for these projects by late March. No phone calls, please.

Project 2: Sustainable Water Policy in California

Project Directors Alvar Escriva-Bou and Caitrin Chappelle

Project Summary

This project, involving experts from the PPIC Water Policy Center, will contribute to the ongoing efforts to of the center to connect nonpartisan, objective research to real world water management debates, with the goal of putting California water policy on a sustainable and constructive path. This internship will be based in PPIC’s San Francisco office. Some travel to Sacramento is anticipated.


The intern will work with a research team on gathering and organizing data and information on various topics (such as water use, water finance, and ecosystem management). This project may include working with large datasets, developing graphics, designing and implementing surveys, and participating in interviews and workshops with relevant stakeholders and decision makers. The intern will also present a summary of this work to PPIC staff at the end of the summer.


The ideal applicant will bring undergraduate or graduate training in a field related to ecology or environmental policy, economics, public policy or related field.

The intern for this project should have:

  • Familiarity with California water policy
  • Excellent written and verbal communication
  • Strong quantitative skills, experience working with large datasets
  • Statistical programming experience
  • Ability to work independently and as part of a team

PPIC values the wide variety of backgrounds and experiences of our research staff, and key elements in the consideration of qualified candidates include excellence; diversity of talents, backgrounds, and viewpoints; and a strong fit with the institute’s mission, values, and goals.

The Research Environment

Interns are offered the opportunity to participate in the collegial atmosphere of PPIC through daily interaction with all aspects of the institution. They are invited to join the research staff in their regular meetings and to attend PPIC’s outside events, including the institute’s public affairs programs and research briefings. PPIC offers access to the Institute of Governmental Sciences library at the University of California, Berkeley, allowing interns to work with many important databases, journals, and statistical datasets. The intern program also includes a Sacramento orientation, with a tour of the state capitol and a discussion of California state policy by PPIC’s government affairs staff.

Each intern’s project will include an initial meeting with research staff, evaluation and feedback at the beginning, midpoint and end of the project, and a briefing by the intern on the goals, findings, and significance of the project. Interns are encouraged to discuss their work throughout the course of the project, to meet with research staff to discuss careers in research, and to meet with communications staff to learn about outreach and building an audience of policymakers.

Location, Compensation, and Time on Project

This summer internship is located in PPIC’s San Francisco office. Compensation is $17.50 per hour. This full-time internship will last up to eleven weeks, ideally beginning June 17, 2019.

To Apply

In addition to filling out this application, copy and paste a cover letter highlighting the particular skills you bring to the project and describing how this internship would contribute to your career development. Attach your resume in PDF or MS Word format.