Life at ISI could be succinctly described as bipolar, with good highs and terrible lows, all depending on the financial forecast of the global institution.
The good days would be characterized by great research and publication output, resulting from cross-department collaborations and well funded programs.
The bad ones are often resulting from ISI struggle to adapt to rapidly changing sources of funding, lack of global strategy from upper management to ensure mid to long term stability in resources and expertize, and a badly compartmentalized "funding" strain affecting personnel's morale.
However, the proximity to gov. agencies allowed excellent access to PMs and clients, with frequent program reviews and novel ideas discussions, and facilitated the establishment of strong professional relationships with funding agencies upper management.