Political volunteers: area of work
Working in politics could take you to Westminster but there are many local constituency and council opportunities as well. The majority of staff in constituency offices are caseworkers but there may also be staff who are responsible for organising local events and managing the local media.
Try contacting your local MP and offering to work part time, or participate in political activity at university. Some internships are available within political parties, especially around election time, or you could try the House of Commons.
The Speaker's Parliamentary Placement Scheme offers ten paid internships a year to individuals from diverse backgrounds and is intended to make those with access to Parliament more representative of the general population. Interns are assigned to individual MPs and spend most of their time working in the MP's offices. The scheme is run in association with the Social Mobility Foundation.
- Political party research officer
- Political party agent.
In-depth look: political party research officer
A political party research officer is responsible for making sure that the party for which they work is able to develop realistic new policies in response to, or in anticipation of, changing social, political and economic conditions. In addition to this, they ensure that the party’s public spokespersons are able to respond effectively to criticisms of existing policies or of the party’s performance when it is in government.
Officers do this by researching policies and gathering ‘ammunition’ that will allow the party to mount attacks on their opponents’ policies and performance. Candidates will need a demonstrable knowledge and enthusiasm for politics as well as excellent research and analytical skills. Commercial awareness is also important.