What is Wonk Tank?
“Wonk Tank is a competition for university students across the United States to showcase their ability to be America’s next great “foreign policy wonk.” A wonk is an individual who has a keen interest in and aptitude for the details of public policy. Like the hit television show Shark Tank, future “wonks” are invited to pitch policy proposals addressing a specific international problem or challenge requiring attention, a nuanced solution, and next steps to consider. Three finalists will be brought to Washington, D.C. to present their pitches to a panel of Department of State officials. The winning wonk will be awarded a paid internship for summer 2017 at the Center for Strategic and International Studies (CSIS) with the Project on U.S. Leadership in Development. You can find a full description of the internship here.
In response to a proliferation of complex global challenges, the U.S. Department of State aims to broaden and strengthen its foreign policy by engaging the American people in the work of diplomacy and development. Recognizing the growing role young people are playing in shaping the global agenda, the U.S. Department of State launched Wonk Tank in 2015 as part of the the existing Diplomacy Lab program aimed at fostering the next generation of foreign policy leaders.
How to Apply
Along with a brief written description of your proposal and some information about yourself, you’ll submit a YouTube link to a video of a 3-5 minute “TEDTalk”-style pitch. Don’t worry about the quality of the video – your application will only be judged on your policy proposal (and your ability to sell it)!
For inspiration, be sure to check out last year’s finalists here. As you’ll see, it’s the quality of the content, not the form, that counts!
The application closes February 21, 2017.
For more information, please visit http://diplomacylab.org/wonktank/.