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Senior Advisor

The Behavioural Insights Team (BIT) is looking for an exceptional candidate to join BIT: North in Manchester. The successful applicant will work on a wide range of behavioural insights projects with a variety of clients including public and private organisations.

You are likely to be working on projects in: health, waste and recycling, early years, economic growth and revenue collection.

The Behavioural Insights Team

The Prime Minister created BIT in 2010 to apply behavioural science to public policy in the UK. In February 2014 we became a social purpose company, owned by the Cabinet Office, Nesta (an innovation charity) and our employees.

BIT: North is based in Manchester and currently has 3 members of staff based here permanently. We do lots of work with the Greater Manchester Combined Authority (GMCA) and the GM Health and Social Care Partnership (GM HSCP). We also work with other local authorities in the North of England as well as private companies. We collaborate closely with the policy teams in London to draw on their expertise.

The Behavioural Insights Team works with governments around the world in almost every area of Government policy. Whilst the subject and output of our projects varies considerably, there are common threads: we try to understand the contexts in which their people make decisions; we notice small details; we find out what has and hasn’t worked before; and we measure everything we do as robustly as we can.

As well as displaying professional excellence, BIT selects staff on the basis of cultural fit: all our staff believe passionately in our company values: always prioritising social impact; empiricism and humility; fresh thinking, collaboration; and public service.

Roles and Responsibilities

BIT: North is looking for an exceptional candidate to work in the Manchester office. You will be working with a Director and Advisor on a very wide range of policy issues. We are looking for somebody with a good knowledge of behavioural science and an interest in a wide range of policy topics, particularly in areas of social policy like health, education and social development. You will also need a background knowledge of local government in particular a good understanding of what services are delivered at a local level and local government structures/priorities etc. The successful candidate will reflect the culture and values of the Behavioural Insights Team by prioritising social impact in their projects and policy work, being empirically focussed, collaborative, and able to bring fresh and innovative ideas to the team.

You’ll need a strong understanding of research and evaluation methods. RCTs can’t always be used on local projects due to small sample sizes so you’ll need to think creatively about how to measure the impact of our work in projects which often go beyond traditional ‘nudges’ by embedding behavioural science into the design of public services.

We are a small team so we all have to pitch in on projects. You will be responsible for the management of some of the BIT: North projects and will also need to be involved in business development for the office.

As a Senior Advisor, you will interact with senior clients on a regular basis. In particular we have very close relationship with the Greater Manchester Combined Authority helping them to shape potential projects. You will be responsible for delivering a range of projects that seek to demonstrate the value of a behavioural approach in local government, ensuring your projects are managed and delivered to tight deadlines and within budget. You will also play a role in ensuring that quality is maintained across the business, including by quality assuring outputs from other policy teams. You are likely to work closely, and collaborate, with BITs Local Government team in London, along with other specialist policy teams as and when required.

You will likely line manage at least one Advisor, and will be responsible for coaching and mentoring the people you manage, and developing their skills and expertise.


  • Substantial experience developing or delivering policy in (local) government, academia, or for a consulting firm. Ideally this experience should be related to local government.
  • Excellent program and project management skills, including an eye for detail and commitment to quality in all aspects of a project.
  • Strong leadership and teamwork skills, including supporting team members to develop their own skills and expertise.
  • Excellent client and stakeholder relationship management.
  • A deep understanding of the behavioural science literature and how it can be applied to help solve complex policy problems.
  • Excellent written and verbal communication (for example ability to write short, to-the-point policy papers for Chief Executives or senior officials).
  • High level strategic thinking, challenging existing assumptions and creative problem solving.


  • Ability to support the design and implementation of rigorous evaluations, including but not limited to randomised controlled trials.
  • Masters in a relevant subject area (including, but not limited to behavioural economics, psychology, design thinking, evaluation methods).
  • Experience in responding to competitive tenders and preparing bids/proposals.
  • Good knowledge of local government issues.

Please note:

If you do not already hold the right to work in the UK and/or require sponsorship in order to continue working here, you should think carefully before applying. This is because we will be unable to sponsor you unless there is no other suitably qualified settled worker available to fill the role or your current immigration status means that the resident labour market test will not apply in your case.

The Behavioural Insights Team is committed to a policy of Equal Employment Opportunity and is determined to ensure that no applicant or employee receives less favourable treatment on the grounds of gender, age, disability, religion, belief, sexual orientation, marital status, or race, or is disadvantaged by conditions or requirements which cannot be shown to be justifiable.

Some of the personal data you provide to Applied when you apply for a role with The Behavioural Insights Team will be passed on to The Behavioural Insights Team for the purposes of (a) reviewing your application; (b) inviting you for interview; and/or (c) offering you a job and getting you set up as an employee/contractor.

If your application is not successful, any personal data provided to us by Applied (including any personal data relating to equal opportunities monitoring as set out above) will be retained by The Behavioural Insights Team for no longer than 6 months after the application deadline has passed (other than in exceptional circumstances where we may need to retain your personal data for longer), at which point your personal data will be securely deleted. We only keep your information for that period in order to allow us to comply with relevant legal obligations

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