What’s life in a UK think tank really like and how do you get to work for one? As a think tanker, how do you decide what to think about and how to think about it? And how do you move from defining ideas on paper to actually influencing government policy?
You’ll find answers to all these – and many more – questions in my book Working for a Think Tank, a unique guide to think tank life.
With a specific focus on think tanks in the United Kingdom:
Chapter 1 explores the current landscape of UK think tanks, defining what they do and how they differ from one another. Discover the many functions that think tanks perform and how they distinguish themselves from the world of academia.
Chapter 2 provides an insight into day-to-day think tank life, including a deep dive into the activities that policy professionals perform as part of their roles, from fundraising to designing policy events, and from blogging to networking.
Chapter 3 investigates the core challenge for policy wonks: how to come up with ideas and insights that haven’t occurred to people who work at the coalface of a particular policy area. Discover the tools and techniques think tankers use to think about old problems in news ways.
In Chapter 4, I share my observations about what makes the best in the business so effective at shaping the policy agenda, detailing the methods and behaviours they use to have impact.
Chapter 5 outlines the steps you can take to secure your own job working for a UK think tank. Learn about the different job roles, understand where to find the latest job adverts, and read about how to best prepare for an interview.
In the Appendix, you’ll find details of more than 120 UK think tanks, including their descriptions, Twitter handles, and links to where they advertise their latest job vacancies.
If you’re considering working for a UK think tank, this is the ideal concise guidebook for graduates seeking their first step on the career ladder, or those looking to make the leap into policy making from another profession.