Inland Fisheries Intern

Conservation International (CI)
Arlington, VA, United States
Position Type: 
Organization Type: 
NGO/Civil Society
Experience Level: 
Not Specified


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Conservation International (CI) has been protecting nature for the benefit of all for over 30 years. Through science, policy, and partnerships, CI is helping build a healthier, more prosperous and more productive planet. 


This internship would support the development of a nascent Inland Fisheries program, with the potential to also contribute to the Freshwater Health Index program. The general purpose of the internship will be to review and summarize existing habitat suitability models (and similar quantitative approaches) for inland fisheries, with a focus on the tropics. While numerous models have been developed through the years, the vast majority have been developed for temperate climates, and typically for a single or small set of species. Our interest is in clarifying research gaps that exist for habitat modeling in tropical climates and flood-pulse ecosystems, and in approaches to multiple species or meta-community models. Special attention should be given to models that can represent climate change, nutrient inputs, and hydraulic alterations, with the goal of informing the establishment of freshwater protected areas and related resource management strategies to safeguard inland fisheries. The review should also document models' data needs, as this is often a key limitation in their application to tropical fisheries in developing countries.The intern's review work should help in setting priorities for CI's Freshwater Science team to define a modeling approach for assessing changes to the Tonle Sap fishery in Cambodia, and eventually to evaluate potential for developing and applying generalizable models for other tropical inland fisheries.


  • The intern will conduct a literature review, with guidance from the Freshwater Science team, and develop a categorization of existing models and related quantitative approaches.
  • An initial suggested reading list will be provided to the intern but the intern will be expected to use judgment on additional resources and references to consult.The intern will have weekly check-ins with his/her supervisor as well as periodic meetings (Skype calls) with other
  • freshwater specialists and scientists in CI.
  • Within the first six weeks the intern should prepare a brief presentation of initial insights, to be delivered to the team (and possibly others in CI).
  • In the following six weeks, the intern will conclude the literature review and prepare an outline of a white paper (which could be considered for further development as a journal manuscript with the intern serving as first or second author).  


This position is based in Arlington, VA.



  • The suitable candidate ideally will either have completed or be working towards a MSc in freshwater ecology or a related field, and with an interest or some experience studying tropical inland fisheries.
  • The intern does not need to have previous quantitative modeling experience, but should be reasonably familiar with quantitative modeling approaches (e.g., Habitat Suitability Indices, species distribution models, environmental flows).
  • Previous experience studying river/habitat restoration would be a plus.


  • Bachelor’s degree.

CI Values

We expect that all employees will embrace the values of our organization.

  • Passion: We are inspired by nature and cherish the diversity of life in all of its forms. 
  • Respect: We respect and trust each other, and we embrace our diversity of cultures, talents, and experiences.
  • Integrity: We act with integrity and are accountable for our actions.
  • Optimism: We are optimistic about the future of life on Earth and are confident that, with our partners, we will achieve unprecedented conservation results.
  • Courage: We tirelessly pursue our vision, taking bold action and persevering through challenges.
  • Teamwork: We work together, recognizing that openness, collaboration and cooperation are fundamental to achieving a healthy and prosperous world for all.