Policy Researcher - 9-12 month Undergraduate Placement

Closing Date - 31st January 2021

Location: Leeds
Salary: £17,056 or NMW


ADAS is the leading supplier of independent technical, environmental, economic and farm business advice to the UK’s farmers and growers, land managers and related organisations, and Government. ADAS has recently been acquired by the RSK Group Ltd which is as one of Europe's leading multidisciplinary environmental consultancies.  There has never been a more exciting time to join ADAS.

The Policy and Economics group is a team of 9 policy, economics and social researchers, mainly based in Leeds. We work with Government, levy boards and the private sector providing expert knowledge, robust evidence, impartial analysis and practical solutions to help our clients address their business or policy needs in the land, agriculture, food, energy and environment sectors. We provide expert policy analysis and evaluation for public policy from its design to the evaluation of its impact, covering topics such as climate change, agri-environment schemes, animal health, natural capital, and the economic and ecological sustainability of European agriculture.

About the role:

We are looking for a placement student to join our team at Leeds to support delivery of policy and social science projects. Current work includes research on; Integrated Pesticide Management, farm programme evaluations, and implementation of Payment for Ecosystem Services mechanisms, water pollution caused by agriculture and understanding farmer attitudes and behaviours towards schemes which pay for farmers to farm more sustainably.  The role will also include providing research for sales opportunities.

You will be responsible for:

  • Developing and applying appropriate qualitative and quantitative research methods to a broad range of policy areas to inform environmental or agricultural policy development and evaluation. This could include data gathering, analysis and evaluation.
  • Assisting with data collection and sample management. This could include assisting with interviews, surveys or workshops.
  • Contributing to creation of research proposals for projects.
  • Use appropriate survey approaches and methodologies, including statistical software and analysis to provide robust evidence. Use of thematic analysis and coding of qualitative data.
  • Contributing to literature reviews.
  • Communicate project outputs in a range of formats including written reports, presentations and infographics suitable for a range of audiences.
  • Work with colleagues across RSK and ADAS and in collaboration with other organisations.

In addition to your normal duties, you may occasionally be required to undertake additional work necessary to meet the needs of the business, without additional remuneration.

We are looking for:

  • Relevant undergraduate experience in, for example, economics, social research, environment, public policy or related subject.
  • A valid UK driving licence.
  • An understanding of social science research techniques and/or environmental economics (awareness of Natural Capital and associated analytical methods would be particularly desirable)
  • An interest in agriculture and the environment.

What you can gain from the placement:

  • Experience of working in a consultancy environment which  is at the frontline of agricultural and environmental policy and scheme design for the public and private sectors.
  • An opportunity to apply academic learning in a real world context, which will help underpin understanding of methodologies and analytical tools.
  • Experience of the environmental and agricultural sector, gaining an understanding of stakeholders and processes.
  • An opportunity to discuss work experiences and opportunities with people working in the field.

About us:

We operate an open and relaxed management culture that nurtures continuous improvement and innovation. This also enables us to achieve a staff turnover rate that's consistently below the industry average. Adopting a proactive growth strategy helps us to run a sustainable and profitable business while providing new and exciting career opportunities for all.

As an entrepreneurial organisation, we encourage and foster the growth of our employees. When joining RSK, a mentor works with you to ensure you set and achieve your goals. We want to accelerate your professional development, including opportunities for a promotional fast track. Further, retaining staff is the building block of a successful organisation. As a company, RSK wants to ensure you maintain a healthy work-life balance, with many opportunities for flexible working hours, locality flexibility, social activities, and community involvement projects.

The company prides itself on providing its staff with a rewarding and challenging career, encouraging Continuous Professional Development, allowing employees to reach their full potential.  Having been recently placed within the top10 UK environmental consultancies (Environmental Analyst, December 2017) and number 42 in the Sunday Times Fastrack 200 which rates the success of private companies in the UK, there has never been a more exciting time to join. 

RSK is committed to our Corporate Responsibility strategy. We seek to minimise our impact on the environment; to engage positively with the community and education groups; to provide a safe and supportive atmosphere in which to work, and to promote Corporate Responsibility throughout our supply chain. 

How to apply:

To apply for this position please visit the RSK Group careers portal and click ‘apply’.  A personal online account will be set up so you can review the progress of your application.  If you require any additional information about the role please contact Lisa Hallington, HR Business Partner on 07384 212094 or email date for applications is midnight on the 31st January 2021. Interviews will be held via Microsoft Teams on the 4th February 2021.

All candidates applying for positions with RSK Group must be eligible to work in the UK/European Economic Area. Candidates should confirm this when applying with their CV and covering letter. 

RSK Group is an Equal Opportunities Employer

For more information about ADAS and the RSK Group visit and



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