NATO Strategic Communications Centre of Excellence (NATO StratCom COE) is looking for a creative and dedicated Principal Scientist (Data Expert) to join our international team working at the intersection of communication, technology, and national security. The post is located in Riga,Latvia.

Today, technology is revolutionizing tools and techniques of communication. Innovations enabling new forms of video manipulation and cutting-edge text generation systems make it possible to rapidly create a near-endless stream of unique information, accelerating threats posed by disinformation campaigns.

Following the rapid development of technology, we are looking for a Principal Scientist who would monitor the development of data science and social media and would be able to advise and educate the personnel of the COE on developments in the field. The successful candidate is expected to have expertise in the ways that new developments in data science and social media create or enhance social, political, and security vulnerabilities.

The Principal Scientist will contribute to developing tools designed to detect and expose messaging created or disseminated on social media platforms. The candidate will conduct research experiments to test what is and is not possible in this area. The candidate must have strong experience using a variety of data mining/analysis methods and creating and using algorithms. The Principal Scientist will also communicate findings in an accessible format through research publications and presentations aimed at audiences including military officers, academics, government decision-makers, and general society.

The Principal Scientist will work within the Technical and Scientific Development Branch. The main functions of the Branch are to develop audience characterization tools, conduct social-media analyses, process data flows, develop external communication tools, and establish and maintain networks and links amongst subject-matter experts.

General duties:

  1. To oversee the research of social media, big data analyses, and projects within the strategic communication context
  2. To lead the development of the QuantCell*
  3. To develop and maintain the appropriate local automated data inputting, storage, processing, and dissemination capabilities to meet staff requirements
  4. To identify, analyze and interpret trends or patterns in complex data sets
  5. To contribute to the Lessons Learned process
  6. To manage and plan project timelines and budgets
  7. To provide expertise on strategic communications policy development at NATO
  8. To provide expertise on strategic communication-related academic research and policy developments in other international organizations (e.g. EU, UN).
  9. To support the delivery of the Centre’s courses and seminars

Essential Qualifications:

  1. Extensive knowledge and experience in programming, data science, machine learning, and related areas
  2. Senior-level military education or civilian equivalent with deep knowledge of mathematics and statistics
  3. Comfortable working with databases
  4. Excellent presentation skills
  5. Advanced English language proficiency (work in the organization is conducted primarily in English)
  6. Experience in working within a multinational environment

Desirable Qualifications:

  1. Working experience as a Data Scientist
  2. Technical expertise regarding data models, database design development, data mining segmentation techniques
  3. Strong analytical skills with the ability to collect, organize, analyze, and disseminate significant amounts of information with attention to detail and accuracy
  4. Experience in conducting research projects on an international level
  5. Fluency in several computer languages
  6. Project management skills
  7. Master’s Degree in computer science or related discipline

Salary level: 5300 – 6200 EUR (gross) 

The appointment will be subject to receipt of a security clearance provided by the national Authorities of the selected candidate.

Candidates are kindly requested to email a CV and motivation letter to The motivation letter should outline why the candidate is a good fit, and their vision for the post, and include a freeform discussion on security challenges posed by developments in data science and social media. Candidates are requested to send their applications by latest 29 March 2023.

About NATO Strategic Communications Centre of Excellence:

The Centre (NATO StratCom COE) works to deliver up-to-date and in-depth analysis of methodologies applied by malicious actors across the information space. Our work focuses on but is not limited to the digital environment analysis, with a particular focus on emerging technologies and AI, to provide a comprehensive and practical knowledge base to those working in the field of strategic communications. We also aim to build a knowledge base of complex communications processes and narrative formation processes for NATO and its nations to operate effectively. Expertise in strategic communications allows the COE to contribute to the development of NATO doctrines and form a research-based framework for Alliance’s operations. The COE’s expertise has formed by combining knowledge from private, public, and academic sectors and successfully applying research in recognizing and managing emerging threats in the information environment.

As an employer, NATO StratCom COE values diverse backgrounds and perspectives and is committed to recruiting and retaining a diverse and talented workforce. NATO StratCom COE welcomes applications of nationals from all countries and strongly encourages women to apply.

We value commitment to the principles of integrity, transparency, and accountability following international norms and practices established for the defense and related security sector. Selected candidates are expected to be role models of integrity, and to promote good governance through ongoing efforts in their work.

* QuantCell uses Artificial Intelligence and Big Data to better understand emerging security threats in the information environment.


  1. Applicants must at least have a bachelor's degree at the start of the internship with at least one degree in a discipline related to the relevant areas: communication, strategic communications, defence, security studies or similar.
  2. Must have strong oral and written English communications skills, and be able to work effectively and build relationships with others.
  3. Must have good organization and planning skills, and be able to demonstrate effective project coordination, facilitation, and implementation based on past work or school experiences.
  4. Must possess deductive reasoning skills and be able to analyze and synthesize information for problem solving.
  5. Excellent English writing and speaking skills (English Level C). Other language skills will be considered a plus.
  6. We especially encourage applicants with skills in data science or statistics. 

General intership description:

  1. Internships are unpaid, but offer an ideal opportunity to acquire substantive professional experience for those interested in the work conducted by the NATO StratCom COE. All the expenses connected with internship or fellowship shall be borne by student/researcher or his/her sponsoring Government or institution. However the NATO StratCom COE can choose to invite both students and researchers to apply for grant announced for certain projects, which are of high importance for the NATO StratCom COE. The amounts and distribution of grants shall be specified taking into consideration availability of budget funding, period of performance and level of expertise required. 
  2. Housing is not provided. However, we may be able to assist you in finding an affordable place to live.

Application process:

  1. Though internships usually start in September or January, we sometimes take interns on an ad-hoc basis, so we encourage you to send your CV (
  2. We maintain a candidate database, so if you are interested, send us your CV with a note that you would like to be informed if new opportunities come in.

Aim: to access the latest theoretical and technical knowledge that students and researchers may have and can apply through practical work assignments at the NATO StratCom COE.

Cooperation with higher educational establishments: Within the framework of cooperation between the NATO StratCom COE and respective higher educational establishment it can be agreed to host internships and fellowships at the NATO StratCom COE. 

Enrolment and duration: Applications shall be submitted not earlier than 6 months and not later than 2 months prior to the internship or fellowship period. Together with their application, all candidates should also submit a short essay (150 - 250 words) outlining their motivation. The CV of a candidate should be attached to the application. All documents must be prepared in English. Duration of the Internship and fellowship can be from 1 month up to 12 months with starting periods at 1 September or 1 January. Exceptions are allowed only when the NATO StratCom COE announce grants for certain projects or internship/fellowship is provided as part of cooperation between the NATO StratCom COE and respective higher educational establishment. 

Legal arrangements:  Acceptance Statement shall be signed by respective student / researcher accepting terms and conditions of their internship/fellowship. Standard procedures for security check will be implemented for all applicants admitted.

PhD students and young researchers wishing to exted their research in the field of Strategic Communications, are encouraged to contact us regards fellowship opportunities. CV and a motivation statement including a section on how a stay at the COE would fit in your research plans should be included. All documents must be prepared in English.

* Please be informed that the personal data indicated in applicant's emails (for example, name and surname, email address, home address, other data) will be processed to ensure the selection of personnel for the requested position of the NATO StratCom COE. By sending us the application specifying personal data, applicant agrees that all information provided will be used only for the position specified for the assessment of candidacy and for ensuring communication process. Unless the applicant withdraws the application, NATO StratCom COE will retain personal data as long as it is necessary for the purpose of its collection.