Since my last post everything is still going well with my placement. The pensions bill which takes up the majority of my work is progressing, it has nearly finished its passage through the House of Lords and should gain Royal Assent (become law) in the next month or so, touch wood!

I though I would talk this time about the different placement and graduate schemes available at the Government Economic Service (GES) and the other civil service opportunities. As an economist in theGESscheme you are in the role of an economist but are not permanently attached to any one department or role. For a placement year or summer internship you would spend your year or summer in one role at one department, but on the graduate scheme you have the opportunity to rotate yearly through economist roles within any department. This is one of the real strengths of the civil service fast stream programme. You could easily find yourself having worked in two or three departments by the time you finished the grad scheme and look for a more senior role.

Roles as an economist are not the only options however. There are four main analytical branches which, depending on your degree subject, are open to placement and graduate students: Economists, Statisticians, Operational Researchers and Social Researchers. All have very similar fast stream programmes to suit different people, not all of us are lucky enough to be economists! There are also roles for non-analysts in policy development roles, and this is actually something that I am considering myself as the policy making process is something which I would like to be more involved in.

The fast stream really does offer something for everyone, and when speaking to senior civil servants the one thing that comes across strongest about how they made it to the top is the range of work they have covered.

Check back soon when I will talk about my plans for the summer after my placement