Policy Research Internship

The Unruh Institute of Politics is committed to bringing the academy and the public square together. As such, the Institute offers a Research Internship course that allows students to conduct extensive research and analysis on policy issues facing local, state, and federal government.

More about the internship

Students will have the opportunity to work directly with partnering organizations. Examples of partnering organizations from previous semesters include the NALEO Education Fund, Green Dot Public Schools, Los Angeles City Council Offices, and California Strategies.

Students take part in a team-based research project where they will work to develop solutions in their respective policy areas by conducting interviews with policy experts, review academic and policy reports, and other primary and secondary sources. At the conclusion of the program, each team presents their final product to the partnering organization.

Spring 2022 Research Projects:

“2022 Elections and Early Childhood Policymaking” with California Strategies: USC students will work with California Strategies to identify and research the key issues shaping several Los Angeles County elections, describe the dynamics of the races, and engage with candidates and their staffs in order to make recommendations about how best to elevate early childhood issues with candidates, the media, and voters during the general election. California Strategies, LLC is a full service public affairs consulting firm dedicated to successfully navigating clients through the myriad pathways of California’s political, legislative, regulatory, and media environments.

“Impacts of Regulation Effecting the 5th Supervisorial District” with Los Angeles County Supervisor Kathryn Barger’s Office: USC students will work with Los Angeles County Supervisor Kathryn Barger's Office to conduct an analysis of housing accessibility and availability in Los Angeles, as well as public safety in regards to mental health and the Men's Central Jail closure. Students will research best practices and answer questions regarding the impacts of regulation as well as providing solutions moving forward. Los Angeles County Supervisor Kathryn Barger serves the residents of Los Angeles County's 5th Supervisorial District. It is the county's largest, spanning 2,800 square miles including 22 cities and 70 unincorporated communities in the San Gabriel, San Fernando, Crescenta, Santa Clarita, and Antelope Valleys.

See past research projects.

To Apply:

The application for the Spring 2022 POSC 395 Policy Research Internship is now closed. The application will reopen for the Fall 2022 semester later this spring.

Please send any questions about the Policy Research Internship to