Transatlantic Post-Doc Fellowship for International Relations and Security (TAPIR)



The Transatlantic Post-Doc Fellowship for International Relations and Security (TAPIR) is a two-year programme for young academics with a background in international relations and international security. The fellows spend a total of 24 months in three different research institu­tions or think tanks in order to build skills in policy-oriented research and create their own networks.

Idea and aims

As the first of its kind, the programme makes a substantial contribution to the creation of inter­national networks and fosters mutual understanding. As highly accomplished academics looking for a career in policy-oriented research and consulting, TAPIR fellows will be able to expe­rience different policy consulting approaches on the job and to forge contacts within the trans­atlantic policy community. In addition to the exchange of information and resources across boundaries and across the Atlantic, the fellowship programme provides a pool of qualified pro­fessionals for future employment in top-end policy consulting and research.


Selected fellows spend eight months each in three different participating research institutions in the United States and Europe. The choice of institutes depends on individual candidates’ research interests, as well as on the core programmes of the participating institutes. Fellows will be working with a supervising researcher at the host institute and will be integrated into relevant research units and projects there. The fellows’ research will be published by their respective host institutions and/or in adequate academic journals. At the end of each year of the programme, a seminar brings together all fellows, so they can exchange information about their experiences and present their research.

Financing & Funders

Fellows receive a monthly stipend of Euro 1,800.- and a monthly allowance for health in­surance of Euro 200.-, making the programme an attractive option that is well above most PhD stipends, plus a one-off allowance for travel to and from institutes.

The program is funded by Fritz Thyssen Stiftung and the participating institutes. Moreover TAPIR is co-funded by the Marie Curie Action COFUND within the Seventh Framework Pro­gramme (FP7) of the European Union.

Career after TAPIR

To date, all fellows found a highly attractive employment after their fellowship, a majority of them in think tanks and universities. Many received job offers already during their TAPIR time.

Read more about their experience with the TAPIR fellowship:

Portrait of Stacy Closson Stacy Closson,
TAPIR fellow from 2007–2009 at CSS and SWP, is working as Assistant Professor at the Patterson School of Diplomacy and International Commerce
The TAPIR fellowship allowed me to experience the nexus of policy work and academic methods in different cultural work environments, leading to a fellowship at the Woodrow Wilson Inter­national Center for Scholars and a subsequent teaching position in a graduate diplomacy pro­gram. I remain connected to the trans-Atlantic think tank world as an Emerging Leader of En­viron­mental and Energy Policy of the Atlantic Council in Washington, DC in cooperation with Ecologic, Berlin.
Portrait of Tobias Koepf Tobias Köpf,
TAPIR fellow from 2011–2013 at IFRI, USIP and EUISS, is Project Manager at Stiftung Genshagen in Berlin
The TAPIR fellowship gave me the unique oppor­tunity and freedom to concentrate on my re­search and to make myself known in the think tank world. It allowed me to build up a wide-spread transatlantic professional network, from which I profit until today.
Portrait of Mateja Peter Mateja Peter,
TAPIR fellow from 2011–2013 at USIP, SWP and IFS, working at the Norwegian Institute of International Affairs (NUPI)
TAPIR helped me to make the transition from doctoral to post-doctoral life, by enabling me to think about broader issues stemming from my dissertation. It built unparalleled networks for someone at an early stage in their career.
Portrait of Thomas Rid Thomas Rid,
TAPIR fellow from 2006–2008 at IFRI, SAIS and RAND, is Professor in the Department of War Studies at King’s College London
The TAPIR programme was crucial for my career: two years in Paris and Washington didn’t just provide invaluable insights and contacts. TAPIR opened doors into academia as well as public policy for me.
Portrait of Judith Vorrath Judith Vorrath,
TAPIR fellow from 2010–2012 at USIP, EUISS and SWP, works as researcher at SWP, Berlin
My TAPIR experience was enriching in many ways. Most importantly, it was a unique chance to collaborate with international colleagues and see the working methods of different think tanks in Europe and the U.S. from the inside. Of course, it also is a lesson on how to adapt to diverse political cultures and environments. I benefit from the TAPIR fellowship to this day.

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