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At the ODI we are committed to creating opportunities for students and early career researchers in areas aligned with our mission to build open, trustworthy data ecosystems to ensure that data can work for everyone. In this spirit, we partner with organisations to offer placements and secondments to students and researchers from academic and research institutions in order to help aspiring researchers to develop their skills and gain valuable experience in data-related research, while progressing mutually interesting and beneficial projects.

Since 2020 we have worked with students from the Imperial College Science Communications MSc, who have joined us on summer work placements to help us communicate complex aspects of data and digital technologies while gaining experience working in industry with larger research teams on applied research projects. 

Good policy placements are hard to find, and tend to be on the communications side. Being involved directly in informing and shaping policy is a rarity and highly valued. The ODI placement is gold dust.
Gareth Mitchell
Lecturer in Science Communications at Imperial College

These work placements helped us explore the use of federated learning to support responsible data practices, examine how power is consolidated and wielded across international data ecosystems, understand how data policymakers/practitioners can work in more innovative and experimental ways to respond to emerging challenges and communicate the importance of developing and sharing computer models.

(The) experience allows one not only to understand data science from an educational point of view but also from a practical perspective. The ODI widened my perspective about science communication and now I am exposed to its audience. I do believe my work will add more value.
Anjana Nair
Junior Researcher


Working with organisations which have a complementary focus helps to bring new perspectives and approaches to our research and fosters more opportunities for inter-institute collaboration.  We welcome secondments from organisations working in areas of mutual interest, a recent example being our work with an employee from the Alan Turing Institute on an applied research project to explore how to responsibly deploy federated learning. 

Joining the Reasearch team on secondment felt like a natural career step, and an exciting opportunity to build domain knowledge and hone my research skills. I am hoping that my collaboration with the ODI will open new doors in roles related to fostering responsible adoption of AI technologies and responsible innovation more generally.
Anastasia Shteyn
Programme Manager, Alan Turing Institute

Work with us

If you would like to talk to us about secondments or work placements please contact our research team at [email protected] for more information.