Home>Daniela, Young Graduate Trainee in Strategic Foresight and Planning Office, European Spatial Agency


Daniela, Young Graduate Trainee in Strategic Foresight and Planning Office, European Spatial Agency


Coming from a bi-national Portuguese-German background, Daniela Stowasser has graduated in International Security. She currently works as a Young Graduate Trainee in the Strategic Foresight and Planning Office at the European Space Agency, in France.

What are your main responsibilities?

I am involved in a variety of strategic foresight activities, ranging from horizon scanning to scenario planning and interdisciplinary studies. I am particularly active in developing the Office’s horizon scanning capacity, by building and monitoring a database encompassing key signals and developments that might act as disruptors for the European space sector. Other activities consist of writing reports and briefs aiming at navigating complex geopolitical, economic, and social landscapes, anticipating emerging threats, and contributing to informed decision-making processes. These activities assist the Agency’s global preparedness and support specific projects.

 How did you prepare for this job?

At the time I applied to the position, I was in between jobs and requestioning which direction I wanted to give to my professional path. Coming from a two-year role in Public Affairs, I was looking at having an experience that would allow me to bridge my academic background in international security with a dynamic, interdisciplinary approach. The multifaceted nature of strategic foresight resonated deeply with my career objectives. 

After research, I came across this position in February 2023 and decided to apply. My expectations were quite low as the program is highly competitive and the interview process was not as smooth as I expected. However, the result turned out to be positive and I joined the Team in September 2023. 

What is the most fascinating part of your job?

I really do consider myself very lucky to be able to work in such a multicultural and intellectually stimulating environment. Working with individuals mainly coming from scientific backgrounds always bringing new perspectives and worldviews to the table is of great value. On the role more specifically, what I find truly fascinating is being able to work with diverse teams, gathering insights from various disciplines, and crafting comprehensive documents that transcend traditional boundaries. It is not always easy to constantly think out of the box, but the challenge is very thrilling.

How did your PSIA experience contribute to the position you hold today?

There are many ways in which PSIA contributed to my overall professional experiences. Firstly, the broad range of subjects available to us as students is profoundly enriching, opening our minds to diverse perspectives and valuable insights. Secondly, the acquisition of concrete skills is crucial. Methodologies for writing reports and conducting policy analysis provide indispensable tools for navigating the day-to-day tasks inherent to work. Thirdly, the support and guidance offered by career teams are instrumental in our professional development journey. Through workshops on self-presentation and professional projection, these resources serve as a significant catalyst for personal and career growth.

What advice would you give to current students?

During your time at SciencesPo, you'll undoubtedly hear about the importance of networking, and it's indeed crucial to cultivate those connections. However, beyond networking, it's essential to recognize the role of luck in your career journey. Rejections and moments of uncertainty are inevitable, but maintaining resilience is key. Keep an open mind to different possibilities, even when faced with setbacks. You'll discover that unexpected opportunities can lead to doors you never imagined.

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