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Career Options in Political Science: Top 12 Career Opportunities in US [2024]

Many people have a notion that studying Political Science will only help in making a career in politics. But this is entirely false. Political Science deals with an extensive range of topics, including research, communication, administration, and collaborative leadership. Naturally, so much variety in the subject opens avenues for different Political Science job opportunities

With the right degree in Political Science and guided career moves, you can grab attractive job roles with lucrative pay packages and a secured and successful pathway to the future. There is a ann6% growth projection for the employment of political scientists from 2021 to 2031. For this job role, it is mandatory to have a major degree in Political Science. 

As a student of this subject, there are some inherent skills that you must possess, including writing skills, excellent verbal communication skills, refined analytical skills, critical thinking abilities, presentation skills, and so on. With such qualities and a decent grade in the majors, you can grab excellent Political Science jobs right after you finish your studies. 

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We will discuss some of the best career options in Political Science below. 

12 Political Science Career Options for Graduates and Majors in the Subject

With a degree in Political Science, you can make an influential career in government employment, international organizations, non-profit organizations, business, law, journalism, research, college education, etc. It is up to your choice and expertise level which industry you would choose for your job. 

Let us look at some excellent BA Political Science jobs widely available for aspirants to explore. We will also explore the average offered salary for the roles to show how lucrative these careers can be.

1. Community Service Manager

A Bachelor’s degree in Political Science is sufficient for this job role. In this job, you have to supervise and coordinate community organizations and social services. You will have to work with community members to oversee staff, target new programs, write proposals for unique community programs and analyze data. 

As a Community Service Manager, you must provide assessments of the current programs. Career growth aspects in this job role are as high as 15%. As this is a management profile, you will need five years of direct experience in this field.  

Average Salary: $58,958/per annum

2. Survey Researcher

Getting the job of a Survey Researcher is impossible without a Master’s degree in Political Science. The job role requires designing and conducting research surveys for myriad reasons. Surveys are not only useful for gathering factual information, but they are also helpful in opinion research. As a Researcher, your job will include analyzing the data and making recommendations to the agency or the company that funded the study. The pay package of a Survey Researcher is excellent, but the growth scope is not very high. 

Average Salary: $59,371/per annum

3. Management Analyst

One of the most popular BA Political Science jobs is that of a Management Analyst. As a Management Analyst, you will need to propose various ways to improve organizational efficiencies and processes. Analysts often assist managers in enhancing profits by taking advantage of smart financial opportunities or minimizing expenses. As an Analyst, you must be proficient in idea communication, data assimilating, merging groups, etc. 

One of the best things about this job profile is its abundant scope of growth at almost 14%. There will be numerous job openings for this role in the future too. However, you need to have a few years of practical job experience for this role. 

Average Salary: $71,230/per annum

4. Political Consultant 

What is the benefit of pursuing a Political Science course if you do not have some role to play in politics? Well, this stands true in some aspects for sure. As a Political Consultant, you have to work with political candidates to run successful campaigns. These campaigns are designed for offices at different levels. You will be responsible for developing public relations strategies, public messaging content, writing speeches for the political candidate, etc. 

A Bachelor’s degree in Political Science will suffice to get this job opportunity. Though the salary is not very high in this job role, you might gain social recognition. 

Average Salary: $41,213/per annum

5. Urban Planner

One of the most prestigious and lucrative career options in Political Science, Urban Planners are mainly hired by city governments. It is pretty evident from the job title that you have to be proficient in the subject to be successful in this role. 

As an Urban Planner, your job will include developing strategic plans to revitalize communities, accommodate the increasing population, and make the present urban areas more efficient. As a senior planner, you will review and sanction various developmental proposals from junior planners. 

Average Salary: $66,846/ per annum

6. Political Scientist

One of the most high-profile Political Science jobs is that of a Political Scientist. A Master’s degree in Political Science is mandatory for this role. As a Political Scientist, you must analyze and study political governments’ structures, development, operations, and trends. Working in this role will easily enable you to obtain the post of a Professor in colleges and universities. This job role comes with a handsome salary package and prestige in society. 

Average Salary: $56,390/ per annum

7. Historian

If you thought that a Historian deals with history only, you are mistaken. It is not just about reading various books related to history and regurgitating information. In these Political Science job opportunities, you have to assimilate historical information and data and analyze the same.

Once you are done, you communicate this information to others who find it useful, relatable, and interesting. From providing guidance with a historical perspective to writing detailed reports, a Historian with a Political Science background can do well. A Master’s degree in the subject is a prerequisite for this job. 

Average Salary: $55,628/ per annum

8. Operations Research Analyst

One of the best Political Science career options is that of an Operations Research Analyst. Using your analytical problem-solving skills and advanced mathematical skills, you can help various organizations gain insights on critical matters that impact their finances and performances. 

As a Research Analyst, you might be endowed with the responsibility of identifying potential problems, investigating issues, and guiding the organization toward making better decisions. You can start with a bachelor’s degree in Political Science, but at the same time, you will need some experience in Analytics and Mathematics. 

Average Salary: $81,698/ per annum

9. Policy Analyst

This job role is highly suited for you if you have a major in Political Science. As Policy Analyst, your job role is inclusive of researching national trends related to various economic, social, political, and international issues. Some of the major duties that you need to take up as a Policy Analyst include providing advice on policies by addressing particular concerns, updating a current policy, etc. 

You also need to work with organizations and stakeholders on the policy development of the company.

Average Salary: $62,592/per annum

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10. Public Relations Manager

One of the high-in-demand BA Political Science jobs is that of a Public Relations Manager. If you have worked in this role for a while, you can easily climb up the ladder to a fundraising manager or PR role. You will be responsible for planning and coordinating efforts to maintain an organization’s image and prestige. 

As a Public Relations Manager, you will have to coordinate various fundraising campaigns, particularly for non-profit organizations. The pay package of this job role is extremely lucrative, where freshers make a decent living. Job opportunities for this profile are abundant and will increase in the coming years. However, to get into the managerial role, you will need some experience. 

Average Salary: $73,794/per annum

11. Economist

Did you think you could only become an Economist with a degree in Economics? If yes, you are highly mistaken. One of the most common Political Science jobs is that of an Economist. You have a high chance of getting employed by research firms, the federal government, and consulting services with a Master’s degree in the subject. 

Your job role as an Economist includes studying money distribution by analyzing factors like government policy, goods, and services, production, etc. Along with conducting surveys, you will need to research economic issues, forecast market trends, and analyze financial data. The salary structure for this job role is robust, with experienced people making it quite large. 

Average Salary: $84,369/per annum

12. Director of Regulatory Affairs

If you are looking for high-profile Political Science job opportunities, the Director of Regulatory Affairs might interest you. Directors of Regulatory Affairs are generally members of a public relations team of an organization. In this job role, your prime responsibility will be managing and maintaining a relationship with various members of appropriate government bodies. 

You will find such jobs in the healthcare operations industry, corporations, non-profits, and even in the government sectors. The national average salary for this job role is pretty lucrative. 

Average Salary: $1,50,281 /per annum

Conclusion

Now, you have a comprehensive list of the best career options in Political Science. While some job roles require just a Bachelor’s degree in the subject, others require more expertise and hence, a Master’s degree. Choose the job profile that interests you after completing your graduation/majors and make a great career with an attractive pay package and social recognition at the same time. 

upGrad offers courses in myriad domains for shaping your career

Whether it is Political Science jobs or jobs in any other field, having a professional degree or a certification is always an added advantage. Upscale your career by enrolling for such professional courses from upGrad. You can choose from the following programs –

Is Political Science an in-demand subject in the marketplace?

Yes, students passing with a graduate or Master’s degree in Political Science have great demand in the market. Well-informed students of this subject grab job opportunities in various fields.

What are the four broad sub-fields of Political Science?

The four broad sub-fields of Political Science include Comparative Politics, American Politics, World Politics, and Political Theory.

Who hires Political Scientists?

One of the most lucrative Political Science career options is that of a Political Scientist. Political Scientists work in organizations with a stake in policy, including political, labor, and government organizations.

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