By Tiffany Chen
Wow! International Relations! What a cool major! Where would you like to work after graduation? Sorry, I don’t really know much about this field, but, what jobs can you get?” After responding to the “What do you want to major in” question with International Relations, I usually get swamped by these somewhat friendly yet overwhelming questions. Honestly, even I asked myself these questions sometimes. I’ve always had a passion in politics, the balancing of power between major players in world governments, and the delicacy of diplomacy—how words can triumph without weapons. Good, I will definitely enjoy my college years studying in this field. But what’s next? Will I still love this subject so enthusiastically after the mystery and the halo of the word ‘politics’ fade? I asked myself over and over again. This summer, I got an internship at an independent think tank, unveiling the mystery of the political science field from the perspective of a scholar, a researcher, and a translator.
Before my first day of work, just to make sure I know what I will experience, I googled the definition of think tanks. Unfortunately, the definition wasn’t really helpful. According to Google, a think tank consists of “a body of experts providing advice and ideas on specific political or economic problems.” I still had no idea what it was. Nevertheless, after interning for a month now, I can definitely say with confidence that think tanks are not so mysterious after all.
Intellisia, an independent think tank in China, focuses mostly on International relations, and simply put, China’s relationship with the world. It specializes in Sino-US Relations, Science and Technology in International relations studies, China’s Diplomatic Studies, and International Political Rise Predictions. Gathering reputable scholars, Intellisia publishes commentaries, researches, and books, translates articles about heated issues, hosts seminars and debates, and provides advice to regional governments or international corporations. It currently consists of various departments including: China and the World Department (a magazine published by Intellisia), Artificial Intelligence Magazine Group, Translation Department, Southeast Asia Insights, and Activity Department.
As a member of the translation department, my job entails tracking international think tanks (such as Carnegie, Hudson, and CSIS) and translating the reports or commentaries they produce. I also had the opportunity to publish commentaries and articles relating to ongoing political debates, discussions, and issues. Working here, my curiosity of the outer world and enthusiasm in knowing how I can serve my country grows daily. It opened my eyes to a world that not only consists of the few great powers like China, France, or the United States, but a diverse earth filled with a multitude of cultures, political systems, and languages beyond imagination. And last but not least, as a member of Intellisia, I got to be a part of a driven, enthusiastic, diligent team of scholars trying to understand the way this world works and how it will continue to work in the future.