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Government Economic Service Careers

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Presentation by Alex Shirvani at University of Sussex, October 2011. Covers graduate opportunities and the application process

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Government Economic Service Careers

  1. 1. GOVERNMENT ECONOMIC SERVICE Making economists better Making better use of economics GES UNCLASSIFIED
  2. 2. The GES and what it does <ul><li>Description of the GES on the internet at </li></ul><ul><li>http://www.civilservice.gov.uk/networks/ges </li></ul><ul><li>Biggest recruiter of economists in the UK (100ish graduates taken on a year) </li></ul><ul><li>Economists analyse evidence to inform policy </li></ul><ul><li>Teams of Assistant Economists (£25-29k) supervised by Economic Advisers (£45-55k). </li></ul><ul><li>AEs with 4+ yrs experience (ideally plus MSc) can apply for posts as Economic Advisers. </li></ul>UNCLASSIFIED
  3. 3. The summer placements <ul><li>Generally 6-12 weeks </li></ul><ul><li>Conditions vary among departments </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Pay around £330-350/wk (£4000+ for 12 wk) </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>37.5 hrs/wk (flexible hours) </li></ul></ul><ul><li>Work with Assistant Economists on projects, supervised by an Economic Adviser. </li></ul>UNCLASSIFIED
  4. 4. Why the GES scheme is a good one… <ul><li>• Biggest internship scheme for economists </li></ul><ul><li>Meritocratic </li></ul><ul><ul><li>don’t filter on ‘target universities’ </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>don’t offer places to people through ‘networking’ </li></ul></ul><ul><li>Exposure to high level work </li></ul><ul><ul><li>do the same jobs as an Assistant Economist </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>staffing cuts and workload mean you get to work on important projects </li></ul></ul>UNCLASSIFIED
  5. 5. My projects at DfE <ul><li>Project on Performance Frameworks </li></ul><ul><ul><li>3000 word report, slide pack and presentation </li></ul></ul><ul><li>Weekly/monthly macroeconomic brief </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Economic summary of key UK indicators </li></ul></ul><ul><li>Public sector reform </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Departmental structure and methods of delivery </li></ul></ul><ul><li>Short notice ‘rapid response’ projects: </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Evidence on links between ‘cognitive skills’ and economic growth </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Skills for Green Economy </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Summary of IFS paper on effect of recession on household disposable income </li></ul></ul>UNCLASSIFIED GOVERNMENT ECONOMIC SERVICE Making economists better Making better use of economics GES
  6. 6. Applying for the summer scheme <ul><li>Application form </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Available from December, submit in January </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Modules/grades so far and competencies </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Reference purely to say you are on track for 2:1 and suitable </li></ul></ul><ul><li>Interviews </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Sift to departments in February-March </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Interviews probably in Easter holidays </li></ul></ul>UNCLASSIFIED
  7. 7. Application form questions <ul><li>Competences (300 words) </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Working on own initiative </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Organising/prioritising time </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Producing results/determination </li></ul></ul><ul><li>Extra-curriculars (300 words) </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Evidence of building productive relationships with others </li></ul></ul><ul><li>Career choice (300 words) </li></ul><ul><ul><li>What attracts you to GES and why are you suitable? </li></ul></ul>UNCLASSIFIED
  8. 8. Interviews <ul><li>Economic knowledge </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Micro – may well be related to the dept (‘why does the government provide…?’) </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Macro </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Current issues (probably macro) </li></ul></ul><ul><li>Departmental awareness </li></ul><ul><ul><li>What do you think are main issues/challenges for the department you’re applying to? </li></ul></ul><ul><li>General competencies </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Just as you would prepare for any grad scheme </li></ul></ul>UNCLASSIFIED
  9. 9. Topics to revise from syllabus <ul><li>Microeconomics 2 </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Externalities </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Public goods/open access common property </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Discounting & NPV </li></ul></ul><ul><li>Adv Microeconomics </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Welfare economics </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Market failure </li></ul></ul><ul><li>Macroeconomics 2 </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Output,unemployment & inflation </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Fiscal & monetary policy </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Economic growth </li></ul></ul><ul><li>Adv Macroeconomics </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Exchange rates (fixed/floating) </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Depressions, slumps, liquidity traps </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Inflation targeting </li></ul></ul>UNCLASSIFIED
  10. 10. Further micro preparation <ul><li>Treasury Green Book </li></ul><ul><ul><li>http://www.hm-treasury.gov.uk/d/green_book_complete.pdf </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Read definitions on rationale for intervention, efficiency/equity, distributional impacts, discounting </li></ul></ul><ul><li>Economics of the Welfare State (Nicholas Barr, 2004) </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Economic theory behind intervention </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Good extra bits relevant to DWP, DfE, BIS and DH </li></ul></ul>UNCLASSIFIED
  11. 11. Further macro preparation <ul><li>The Economist </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Follow on Twitter @TheEconomist or ‘like’ on Facebook </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Read articles on Eurozone crisis, UK deficit reduction plan </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Also good to read up on global imbalances </li></ul></ul><ul><li>Books for background on current UK situation </li></ul><ul><ul><li>‘ Beyond the Crash’ (Gordon Brown) </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>‘ Back from the Brink’ (Alastair Darling) </li></ul></ul><ul><li>Online blogs, useful Twitter accounts </li></ul><ul><ul><li>See list in handout </li></ul></ul>UNCLASSIFIED
  12. 12. UK economic indicators <ul><li>HM Treasury Pocket Databank </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Superb free up to date reference point for figures online </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Familiarise yourself with inflation, GDP, unemployment, trade figures, and especially public finances </li></ul></ul><ul><li>Office for National Statistics </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Learn how to find things on the site (useful for dissertation too) </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Follow the economic releases through the month </li></ul></ul><ul><li>MarkitEconomics </li></ul><ul><ul><li>PMIs on construction, manufacturing & services </li></ul></ul>UNCLASSIFIED

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