Applicant Instructions

Eligibility and Expectations

Complete applications require both a Postdoc and a Research Advisor. Eligibility requirements for both roles are detailed below.

For Postdocs:


  • U.S. citizens only
  • Ph.D. in a relevant field must be completed before beginning the appointment and within five years of the application deadline
  • Proposal must be associated with an accredited U.S. university, college, or U.S. government laboratory
  • Eligible candidates may only receive one award from the IC Postdoctoral Research Fellowship Program. 


  • Conduct two years of research on awarded topic
  • Coordinate with the Research Advisor and IC Advisor
  • Publish research results, as appropriate
  • Attend the annual IC Academic Research Symposium

For Research Advisors:


  • Must be an employee of an accredited U.S. university, college or U.S. government laboratory
  • Are not required to be U.S. citizens


  • Provide on-site support for the Postdoctoral Fellow
  • Coordinate with the IC Advisor
  • Has the option to attend the annual IC Academic Research Symposium

Application Process

Create and release your Profile in Zintellect – Postdoctoral applicants must create an account and complete a profile in the Zintellect online application system. Please note: your résumé/CV may not exceed 2 pages. Any pages beyond page 2 will be removed prior to review.

Identify a research opportunity – Filter research opportunities by organization (Office of the Director of National Intelligence) in the Zintellect Opportunity Catalog and identify one or more research opportunities relevant to your research.

Apply for one or more opportunities by completing your application – Enter the rest of the information required for the IC Postdoc Program Research Opportunity. The application itself contains detailed instructions for each one of these components: availability, citizenship, transcripts, abstract, publication and presentation plan, and information about your Research Advisor co-applicant. The Program will not accept proposals containing human or animal subjects.

Upload your research proposalProposals should begin with a brief abstract, followed by the body of the proposal, which should contain these components: a) statement of problem, b) background and relevance to previous work, c) general methodology, procedures to be followed, and timeline for completion of each step, d) explanation of new or unusual techniques, e) expected results and their significance and application, and f) literature citations, where appropriate. Proposals should be 6-8 pages, including figures and citations; single-spaced (excluding captions); using 12-point, Times New Roman font. Any pages in excess of 8 will be removed from the application prior to review.

Upload your Research Advisor Packet – The Research Advisor Packet includes three documents:

Postdoctoral Applicants, please note: your research proposal must be reviewed by your designated Research Advisor prior to the submission of your application. Also note that your proposed host facility will need ample time to review your proposal and execute the Commitment for Sponsored Research Form. Applicants are encouraged to discuss these forms with your designated Research Advisor as early in the process as possible.