DIVISION: Joint Force Development

BRANCH/SECTION: Operational Experimentation (OPEX)

DETAILS OF PROJECT: Intern support to NATO Operational Experimentation

The Allied Command for Transformation (ACT) is NATO’s leading agent for the improvement, development and evolution of Alliance capabilities. ACT work involves innovative and conceptual forward thinking that shapes NATO policies and future force capabilities.

The OPEX Branch supports the ACT mission by evaluating new ideas using experimentation, analysis and reporting. Our work is accomplished by a resident, multi-national team of 12 experts that work together with industry, academia, government and non-governmental organizations, and military both in Europe and North America. Our collaborative efforts facilitate maturation of concepts through the phases of discovery, hypothesis formulation and validation.

The experimenters in this branch plan, design and conduct practical defence experiments, in accordance with NATO Concept Development & Experimentation (CD&E) policy, in support of new concepts and emerging capabilities for the Alliance. Each experiment is led by a military officer (OF-4) and addresses both military matters and the technicalities of applying experimentation to defence-based challenges. Ongoing work includes project areas such as Medical Support, Federated Mission Networks, Civil-military Information Sharing, International Cyber Defence, Urbanisation, Deterrence of Non-State Actors, Collaborative Resilience, the Protection of Civilians, etc.

As a part of the OPEX Team, under mentorship, the successful candidate will contribute to this challenging and rewarding program through working with a wide network of international subject matter experts, constructing and conducting experiments, analyzing results and compiling reports that will influence and inform national and multinational defense policy and planning at senior levels.

Employment as an Intern on this program has previously proved highly beneficial to NATO ACT, OPEX and the interns. In particular, involvement in this program affords:

  • Contribution to and appreciation of resolving multifaceted and dynamic strategic challenges.
  • Mentorship and individual growth.
  • A broadened knowledge across areas including military, civil, ethical, economic, technical, political, etc.
  • Development of personal skills in project management and communication.
  • Training opportunities – computers, language, military, project management, analysis techniques, etc.
  • Establishing a wide ranging international professional network.
  • Reward in seeing contributions materialize into a final product.


The intern will report to the Operational Experimentation Branch Project Lead and provide direct support through:

  • Collecting and organizing data from workshops, exercises and other experimentation events.
  • Developing / maintaining relationships with experts from a variety of nations via phone, e-mail and in person.
  • Analyzing and processing qualitative or quantitative data from experimentation events and studies.
  • Performing research, reviewing materials as well as the drafting, editing and finalizing reports.


  • Current or recently graduated Post Graduate student in political science, economics, social sciences, physical sciences
  • Generalist with strong analytical skills, able to delve to the bottom of a wide range of complex topics
  • Strong interpersonal communications skills, able to confidently interact with experts
  • Experience in conducting research, preparing written reports and conversing in English