Principal Economist

Ofcom

London

Edinburgh, UK

£72,139 - £97,601

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Team Overview

Ofcom is the independent regulator and competition authority for the UK communications sectors. We regulate the TV and radio sectors, fixed line and mobile telecoms, postal services, plus the airwaves over which wireless devices operate, with the aim of furthering the interests of UK citizens and consumers.

The Economics Group provides the economic analysis that underpins everything Ofcom does to improve communications services for people and businesses.

Purpose of the Role

We are seeking to recruit a Principal Economist into the Ofcom Economics Group. The Economics Group provides the economic analysis that underpins what Ofcom does to improve communications services for people and businesses. As part of the Economics Group, you will help ensure our policies have a sound economic foundation and deliver a real, long term impact in what is an increasingly important and dynamic sector for consumers and companies. You will work collaboratively with other economists, as well as lawyers, technical experts, accountants and policy specialists. You will have the opportunity to work across all the communication markets we regulate and further develop your economic expertise through working on a wide range of challenging issues. In addition, you will be expected to contribute to the leadership of the professional economists in the Economics Group.

Requirements of the Role

  • Identify the key economic issues
  • Provide high quality economic analysis, including anticipating and considering counter-arguments or different points of view, from others within Ofcom and from external stakeholders
  • Potentially manage large complex data sets, spreadsheets and econometric models
  • Provide clear, well-reasoned drafting, including for documents that will be published
  • Communicate the economic issues convincingly when attending team meetings, governance meetings and meetings with stakeholders
  • Contribute to the leadership of the professional economists in the Economics Group

Skills, knowledge and experience

  • Knowledge of microeconomics: Ofcom is an economic regulator and our policies are based on solid economic foundations. You will therefore need to have a good grounding in microeconomics, with training in one or more of industrial organisation, public economics, econometrics or financial economics. Typically this will be through a degree in economics and/or, a post-graduate qualification (such as an MSc or a PhD with relevant specialisms)
  • Agility in applying economic concepts: You will need to be able to apply your knowledge of microeconomics to new situations. Communications markets are dynamic, and we face problems that are novel and complex. As a Principal economist you will be expected to show thought leadership and be able to identify the key economic issues and the best framework for considering them. Working with the rest of your project team, you will define workable solutions, which will often require new and creative approaches
  • Collaboration and communication skills: Written documents are the norm and to be successful in the Economics Group the ability to communicate written arguments effectively is vital. Beyond capturing insights in writing there is a strong culture of collaboration. We contribute to others’ ideas and are open to others contributing to ours, so good verbal and listening skills are essential
  • Quantitatively strong: Quantitative analysis supports most of our decisions, so you need to be experienced in interpreting information, and have good attention to detail. You should be able to interpret and manage data and have used softwares, eg Stata, R etc.
  • Effective planning and project management: An important part of the Principal role is planning and organising economic analysis, including identifying work streams to be carried out by others under your supervision. You should be able to judge what is most appropriately undertaken by you and what is most appropriately delegated to others. You should be comfortable building rapport and effective working relationships within multi-disciplinary teams
  • Experience: You will have experience of applying economics, preferably in regulation or competition policy. Experience of working in the communications industry is highly desirable but not essential. We are particularly interested in applications from candidates with experience working in the online, broadcasting and media sectors
  • Appreciation of and desire to promote Ofcom's values of excellence, agility, empowerment and collaboration

Qualifications

At a minimum, a degree in economics and/or a post-graduate qualification (MSc or a PhD).

Competences

PLANNING, PROJECT & PROGRAMME MANAGEMENT:

  • Takes responsibility for delivery to time, quality, and cost across a range of projects/programme, setting direction for the scope of the work
  • Takes account of strategic priorities when identifying requirements and negotiating for resources
  • Ensures consistency in approach across different projects, programmes and/or work areas, manages the governance process smoothly at critical points in the project lifecycle and manages and resolves risks, reporting or escalating when necessary

RELATIONSHIP MANAGEMENT (INTERNAL & EXTERNAL):

  • Manages certain aspects of external relationships, acting as an ambassador for Ofcom and displays professional integrity and objectivity in dealings with colleagues and stakeholders
  • Encourages trust and collaboration within and between teams and motivates the team to perform effectively and deliver value for money
  • Delegates effectively and provides appropriate levels of support and inspires people to stretch to achieve more than they thought possible

COMMUNICATION (WRITTEN & ORAL):

  • Takes responsibility for bringing together material for high profile/ complex documents and provides direction on the style and tone of contributions, creating a compelling and well supported argument
  • Communicates complex ideas, concepts, and arguments in high profile situations and to challenging audiences
  • Communicates openly and honestly, even when it’s difficult and encourages genuine two-way conversation

PROBLEM SOLVING & ANALYSIS:

  • Provides overall direction for analysis across a range of different work/projects & clarifies options in complex situations to determine the optimal course of action
  • Gets to the heart of complex issues, demonstrating command of detail and of the bigger picture and is able to work with ambiguity and is responsive to ambiguous situations
  • Respectfully challenges the analysis/modelling of the team and policy colleagues resolving differing opinions and inputs

KNOWLEDGE & EXPERTISE:

  • Acts as an expert or thought-leader in own specialism, providing professional advice and guidance internally and/or externally
  • Promotes the specialism outside the immediate team, educating others about the specialism
  • Makes sure people look at things with the interests of consumers and citizens at heart

Further Information

To apply please submit an up to date CV and cover letter explaining your suitability for the role by the Closing Date of 8th May 2019. You can do so by following the instructions above at “Apply for this job online.”

All Ofcom staff enjoy generous benefits including private medical care, a private pension and 25 days’ leave (with the option of purchasing up to 10 additional days) see: https://www.ofcom.org.uk/about-ofcom/jobs/benefits.

Ofcom offers flexible working arrangements to help manage work and personal commitments. We have family friendly policies that actively seek to support our colleagues and enable our teams to work in the most effective way. We welcome applications from candidates who would like to work part-time or flexibly, so please tell us what your preferred working arrangements are.



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