Updated on:
July 29, 2021

The Growth and Development of the Policy Insights Forum: Internship Perspectives

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To see full published article, click here.
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Policy Insights Forum

See the PIF

The Growth and Development of the Policy Insights Forum: Internship Perspectives

As Policy Research Intern working within the Policy Insights Forum (PIF), a nonpartisan research division of Samuel Associates, I have the opportunity to work with business leaders, academics and former military leaders in a real-world setting.

How the PIF Functions

Since joining Samuel Associates, I have witnessed the growth of the PIF and the audience attraction of hundreds of viewers from various backgrounds, including foreign and domestic governments, industry executives, medical sector practitioners, and academics worldwide. We have had the pleasure of hosting our Strategic Perspectives Series events online due to the pandemic and in-person once restrictions were lifted. After each session, we publish a recording on our YouTube channel. Additionally, an Executive Summary is written for each event to give our website visitors valuable insight into the discussion and explain the main elements of the session. The goal of the PIF is to facilitate meaningful public policy discussions regarding Canada's national interests and issues it can face, either in the domestic and foreign realms. Moreover, several articles have been published by our Honourary Fellows and staff on our website and, notably, in the widely-read Canadian Defence Review (CDR) Magazine. The latest published article was "Agile Procurement and Cyber Space" (CDR Magazine, July 2021, Volume 27, Issue 3, p.109).

Constant Adaptability and Learning

In this professional setting, adaptation is fundamental as I constantly work on various projects and tasks. Being well organized is critical to completing the tasks at hand while coordinating the different timelines for each project. Another aspect I highly enjoy about this internship is having the opportunity to use in ways I did not anticipate, either the knowledge or skills I previously acquired during my university years and other previous work-related experiences. For instance, French being my first language, I was encouraged to speak, work, and produce various communication products to support both client work and PIF-related activities. For example, I had the opportunity to introduce and close a PIF live event on A National Security Strategy for the Arctic: a US-Canadian view (May 26, 2021). Additionally, I was able to apply my knowledge of European geopolitics for many client projects and add a European perspective to the conversations.

Working as part of the PIF

The PIF is an ideal place to develop professional skills, and it is an enabler for applying university teachings to this real-world experience. Writing the event Executive Summaries has been both a challenging and rewarding experience. This provided me with an excellent opportunity to listen, understand, learn, and transmit the knowledge presented by subject-matter experts to the general public in a comprehensive and textual format. Every event is an occasion to learn something new, link pieces of knowledge and information together in a meaningful way to grow my understanding of various topics. It has been an exceptional opportunity for me to learn more about Canada and how it functions as a country and as a society bringing together people from diverse backgrounds to progress its common goals. Another positive aspect of the PIF is getting to work as part of a united team and the ability to work independently. As trust, initiative and communication are core values both at Samuel Associates and the PIF, this has been the perfect opportunity to learn more about the importance of these fundamental values in a professional environment and in life in general. My experience has been very enriching because I was able to gain insight and understanding into professional life and go beyond what I received in a traditional university setting.

Future Projects for the PIF

The PIF is constantly preparing new and insightful events and discussions on high political relevance in Canada and Canada's place in the world. Our latest initiative for the PIF is our Strategic Thinkers Series. It is currently live on our YouTube channel. The first episode is an interview with Canadian author and journalist Sam Cooper who shares his overview of his most recently published book, Wilful Blindness, How a network of narcos, tycoons, and CCP agents infiltrated the West.

I look forward to completing my internship in the coming weeks and walk away with a rewarding professional development experience at Samuel Associates - one that will prepare me for a career in global business and international relations.

To see full published article, click here.
To see full published article, click here.