• Senior Policy Adviser, Data

    Job Locations UK-London
    Posted Date 2 weeks ago(2 weeks ago)
    Job ID
    Science policy
    Closing Date
    Position Type
    Permanent Full-Time
    Salary Max
    GBP £42,228.00/Yearly
    Pay Band
  • Job Scope

    The role


    This role offers an experienced policy professional an exciting opportunity to lead programmes of work that are at the forefront of the development, use and stewardship of new forms of data and digital technologies. The role will involve working with an engaged and expert team in developing and delivering new activities from major reports to high level convening of experts. You will be working with world-leading experts in this field and developing relationships with policy makers, influencers and decision makers across sectors. The role will include design and scoping of new activities, project management and oversight, building strong networks across a broad and complex stakeholder network, and working to deliver outputs for the wide range of audiences with which we engage. It will also include identifying and taking up opportunities for disseminating and further developing the key messages in our report Data Management and Use and will involve close collaboration with our team members working on our AI programme.

    You will enjoy exceptional visibility and will have experience of working with and influencing people at all levels of seniority. The ability to assess and report on technical information in a clear and concise manner is essential for this role. A creative thinker and effective problem solver, you will be adept at networking, motivating colleagues, building interdisciplinary relationships and working with committees, and you will bring a flexible approach to hours and working locations.


    Policy at the Royal Society


    The Royal Society is the independent scientific academy of the UK and the Commonwealth, dedicated to promoting excellence in science. It is a self-governing Fellowship of many of the world’s most distinguished scientists drawn from all areas of science, engineering and medicine. Providing scientific advice to shape policy is one of our strategic priorities. The Society’s reputation for excellence in science policy is founded on the expertise of its Fellows, its wider convening power, and the quality, rigour and timeliness of all its work.


    The Society’s Data Policy team seeks to promote the role of data science and digital technologies in advancing research, policy, industry and education. We have delivered major projects on data management and use, machine learning and cyber security and are engaged in diverse programmes of work on AI, data and digital technologies.


    The Society works in partnership with businesses, National Academies, learned societies, charities and government; deploys a wide range of channels and approaches, from the delivery of major reports to rapid shorter statements; the creation of influential networks; skilful use of the Society’s digital and media channels; and well-founded programmes of events. The Society continues to develop and look for innovative approaches that will increase its influence in national and international policy debates.


    The successful applicant will sit within a team comprised of Senior Policy Advisers and Policy Advisers, supported by project and programme coordinators. Senior Policy Advisers gain experience of corporate activities by leading aspects of the learning and development programme and other cross-cutting corporate activities such as finance, digital and business planning. Posts evolve over time as programmes develop and mature.


    Section: Science Policy

    Reports to: Head of Policy

    Location: Carlton House Terrace

    Hours: 35 hours per week

    Pay Band: E

    Salary: £42,228 per annum


    Interviews week commencing Monday 8 October 2018.


    Policy advice

    1. Identifying and analysing policy issues of relevance to the Society’s policy priorities.
    2. Working with networks of experts and influencers to identify opportunities to disseminate and promote our outputs and recommendations, and to build partnerships where valuable.
    3. Providing frequent advice to senior management, relevant Vice Presidents, Fellows and committees.
    4. Coordinating, drafting and editing policy reports, presentations, briefings and other outputs. 

    Programme delivery

    1. Ensuring the successful development and implementation of the Society’s policy programmes, including liaison with Committees.
    2. Overseeing projects undertaken by others, for example Policy Advisers and Project Coordinators.
    3. Managing effectively the budget and management reporting for your programme, reporting in accordance with the Royal Society processes. 
    4. Working effectively across the teams of the Royal Society, especially public affairs, digital, public engagement, international and design.

    Stakeholder management

    1. Building and maintaining strategic national and international networks of influence with policymakers, scientists and other stakeholders at his/her own and at a higher level of seniority.
    2. Representing the Society and its policy positions in meetings with government, policymakers and others. 


    1. Providing Secretariat functions for committees and working groups where appropriate.
    2. Working with staff and Committees to get relevant approval and deliver your programme of activities.
    3. Ensuring quality assurance processes are followed for your programme of work and other outputs. 

    Corporate responsibilities

    1. Working closely with other teams within policy and across the Society to ensure the delivery of the Society’s overall goals.
    2. Sharing experience and ideas with others in the Section and Society and contributing broadly to the smooth running, outcome-orientated approach of the Society
    3. Contributing to other activities within the Royal Society as required.

    Key Knowledge and Skills Required



    A degree (or equivalent relevant experience)




    Expertise in research policy

    Skilled oral and written communication for technical and non-technical audiences

    Assessment and reporting of technical information in a clear and concise manner

    Self-organisation and management of several tasks simultaneously

    Highly motivated and an ability to generate similar motivation in others

    An enthusiastic team player, with experience of collaborative working

    Creative thinking and problem solving




    To have worked on a variety of policy programmes at the national and/or international level

    Delivering complex projects on time, on budget and on scope

    Writing, editing and disseminating reports

    Establishing and maintaining a network of contacts

    Effective interaction with people at all levels of seniority



    Managing staff or virtual teams, either formally or informally

    Working with committees




    Able to be flexible about working hours on occasions

    Able to undertake national and / or international travel on occasions



    ·         Identifies difficult situations

    ·         Recognises stress in others and takes steps to reduce it

    ·         Controls pressurised situations

    ·         Effectively enthuses those in the team

    ·         Proactively sets goals and targets for own work


    Working with others

    ·         Actively seeks ideas and criticisms from within the team

    ·         Resolves conflicts within and between teams

    ·         Embeds feedback processes within the team

    ·         Seeks out new networks that will create opportunity for the Society

    ·         Able to present complex issues simply

    ·         Uses discretion, tact and empathy when negotiating with and/or seeking to influence others

    ·         Understands the need to manage expectations and to only promise what is deliverable

    Resource management

    ·         Determines strategy and deployment of resources, balancing cost and benefit; risk and potential for maximum impact across significant business areas

    ·         Manages complex cross-cutting projects to time, budget and specification

    ·         Ensures others accept responsibility towards results or quality

    ·         Sets the quality standards for own business areas in accordance with strategy and contributes to the formulation of quality standards across the Society

    ·         Sets and monitors priorities

    ·         Identifies and manages risk effectively

    Critical thinking

    ·   Uses questioning, analytical and probing skills to ‘dig deeper’

    ·   Knows when enough information has been obtained and adapts presentation of information to the needs of the audience

    ·   Evaluates the benefits, practicalities and value for money of ideas and obtains feedback

    ·   Makes sound decisions in a complex or ambiguous environment and is able to gain support and manage challenges confidently



    ·         Actively seeks the input and opinions of others, often outside his/her section and accommodates and incorporates this thinking into any output.

    ·         Actively seeks new challenges and projects; leads discussions surrounding new ideas, approaches and projects

    ·         Anticipates need for innovation and seeks new ideas, approaches and solutions


    Managing people and relationships

    ·         Sets expectations of others and ensures they deliver

    ·         Demonstrates a positive attitude towards work, celebrating success and instilling confidence, which encourages the same from others

    ·         Encourages others to share ideas and participate in the discussion and decisions of the team

    ·         Assesses needs of clients/stakeholders/staff and makes plans to meet these needs



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