Research Volunteer - Autumn 2015
An experience of real politics and a stepping stone to working in government, academia or consultancy.
As a research volunteer at the Constitution Unit is an ideal way for
recent graduates to gain experience of work in a think tank which is also an
academic research centre, and to do research which is linked to policy. Past research volunteers have included students in their holidays, postgraduates thinking about
continuing their studies to Masters or PhD level, and civil and public servants
who work for us part-time or on secondment.
‘Our volunteers have gone on to work in think tanks, Whitehall, Westminster, the law, consultancy and academe. I am still writing references for them five years afterwards, and am very happy to do so. I feel very proud of our volunteers and what they have gone on to do’ Professor Hazell – Constitution Unit Director
Applicants will have a degree or equivalent in Social Studies or Political Science, in Law or in some related subject. The candidates should be highly motivated, have excellent interpersonal skills, be able to work independently and have good analytical and writing skills. We accept undergraduates who are on their summer break.
Value & Benefits
Each research volunteer is assigned to one of our researchers to assist them with a single project throughout their three months here at the unit. This gives research volunteers the opportunity to build a close working relationship with their supervisor, get a real feel for the day-to-day process of academic research, gives your research skills a more practical edge and to have real responsibility and independence over their task.
The work is varied and will be assigned to reflect peoples skills and areas of interest. We very much value the work done by our volunteers and they are treated as full members of our small and friendly team. We invite the volunteers to come to our team meetings, contribute to our publications, newsletter and blog, and the whole team work together to organise our regular events and seminars. They get a real taste of what academic and policy research is like, and make an important contribution to our research projects. In return we will provide volunteers with extra skills, careers advice, and a reference for when they leave.
mentoring by both of my supervisors, I now have a more realistic idea of where
I want to establish a career and how to get there.’ Will Allchorn
Duration & Expenses
We advertise for the research volunteer opportunities quarterly and they last for
three months, full or part time, and we are flexible in working hours. We hope volunteer can work for a minimum of 3 days. The
positions are voluntary, but the Unit will pay travel costs up to the sum of
£250 a month.
Areas of Research
The projects that research volunteer will be working on:
Those wishing to join our team should refer to the research currently undertaken (above) at the Unit and specify which area you might like to contribute to.
’Being at the Constitution Unit was a rewarding
experience. I felt valued as a member of the team, took on stimulating work and
I was able to make a real contribution to the Unit’s research.‘ Matthew Honeyman
Applications for summer have now closed
Application deadline: 3 September 2015
To make an application please email firstname.lastname@example.org with the following documents:
- Your CV
- A covering letter stating why you are a suitable candidate.
- The application form
- A piece of work, for example a recent short essay.
*Note to students: Full-time masters students are not eligible at the Constitution Unit during their period of study. Part-time students are eligible at any point.
How long will it take before I hear that I have been selected?
Once we have received all our applications, it will take a minimum of three weeks after the closing date to hear whether you have been selected for an interview.
We strive to contact all applicants to let them know if they
have been successful or not.
UCL's Volunteer Policy
- Will have an arrangement with UCL which does not entitle them to a financial reward or benefit in kind for work they perform under the arrangement
- Do not have to turn up for work if they don't want to (even if you or their colleagues expect them to or they generally work to a regular pattern)
- Cannot be dismissed, sued for breach of contract nor have payment or reward withheld if they fail to do the work or perform the services they were providing.
'My time at the Unit was wonderful – a flexible, friendly and informal atmosphere with some challenging work which required self-motivation.' Former Volunteer