Full time | Permanent | £50,000 - 55,000 per annum
Deadline: Thursday 2nd March 2023 at 10am GMT
For this role our preference is for UK, Rwanda or Kenya based applicants, however we will consider (on a case by case basis) candidates based in countries that are on London time +/- 3 hours.
About this work
We believe teams in governments, funders and businesses of today need to work differently to tackle the challenges of tomorrow. Having the capacity to proactively think about the future, and design towards it with intent, is vital to that new way of working. At Brink we know that without an ambitious vision all teams will design their work and impact around today’s mental models, with incrementalism as the result. And so across our work we ask ourselves: what does the future hold? How can we design the methods and mechanisms that will serve us best in the future? And how can we actively work to create a better version of what’s to come?
Across our work, we bring people together around these questions, doing anything from a half day experiential workshop with futurologists to a study tour of innovation in high stakes environments like Nepal. We’re method agnostic, but are intentional about getting out of one’s bubble and seeing different perspectives on the future, and how we can get there.
It is this mindset that has driven us to explore questions like:
- What is the potential for Web3 to make significant positive change and how might we ensure governments are playing a central role in creating the enabling policy and governance environments for people beyond the usual suspects to create the future internet we want to see?
- What is the future of Money and will money remain the domain of governments, or will there be a rise of transnational currencies? What are the impacts of that?
- How are governments around the world using foresighting methods and what are the most potent ways to bring in foresighting for more effective, participatory and visionary policy-making?
- What is the future of how we manage and support innovation, and what can we learn from both strong and weak signals?
Whilst the range of topics we work on is broad - think rapid urbanisation, the gig-economy the rise of blockchain, the future of truth - the thing they all hold in common is the opportunity to combine an understanding of trends, convening of collective voices and blending of creative methods together to imagine and work towards a fairer, better future.
What we’re looking for
We are on the lookout for a talented and driven Futurist to join us.
At Brink, we work with our partners and collaborators to imagine a vision of the future world we’d like to see. We draw on a blend of methods to spot trends, build scenarios and shape work to validate or disprove our trajectory towards better futures. It’s not about making predictions. For us, it’s about keeping our finger on the pulse of future trends, and analysing them so that the work we’re delivering is resilient to different future environments.
The Futurist will design, lead and sensemake horizon-scanning processes to make sense of the different forces at play in policy, programmes and initiatives. They’ll draw on diverse methods to design and produce scenarios that can drive an ambitious vision for our work.
Going from trends to action and impact means mixing a range of research, foresighting, facilitation and innovation approaches, and we are building a team with a range of methods and skills to draw from. We’re looking for people with experience in horizon scanning, strategic foresight, and futures methods like designing speculative futures. We lean more towards the qualitative than the quantitative but welcome expertise in both. Regardless of your background, if you’re a hybrid thinker, who has proven skills and experience in one or more of those areas, and wants to put them to use making meaningful impact in the world, we’d love to hear from you.
What you’ll be doing:
- Leading the design and delivery of horizon scanning initiatives for government partners.
- Collaborating with partners and others at Brink to connect the dots across our work, planning how it will be delivered, and resourcing it accordingly.
- Leveraging diverse and innovative methods and tools to facilitate and deliver horizon and foresight scans across sectors, questions or contexts.
- Facilitating collective reflection and learning about the future, synthesising these insights to inform problem solving, decision making, strategic planning or future work.
Your skills and experience:
- Ability to look at information from the past and present, identifying patterns and trends and using them to inform decision making with a long-term view.
- Sensitive and able to scan horizons and pick up weak signals of change, explore their potential implications and assess their impact and urgency.
- Curiosity about "what's going on?" in the world or specific regions or sectors, separate signals from noise, adopt new frames to identify (non-obvious) patterns.
- Ability to share and disseminate new perspectives or understanding influencing how key stakeholders socially construct meaning.
- Ability to leverage methods, mindsets and mechanisms to drive the work at an organisational level.
- Ability to navigate uncertainty and ambiguity, able to manage projects based on principles of adaptation and emergence.
- Understanding that complex problems need a wide-reaching, cross-cutting approach. Ability to explore challenges from multiple perspectives by zooming in and out, with a focus on relationships and flows rather than individual elements; understand how certain dynamics and conditions are driving and influencing an issue.
On a more human level:
- Deeply interested in what motivates change, influences behaviour in service of better futures.
- Highly collaborative and communicative. You establish rapport quickly, and communicate clearly about your ideas, process, progress, and needs for support.
- Loves to experiment with foresighting approaches. This means being creative, being fine with getting things done rather than perfect, and always listening out for signals of how our experiments are going and finding meaningful ways to continue learning
- We intentionally work on the hard stuff in working towards creating better futures, but we also don’t like to take ourselves too seriously! You, like us, are at your best when you work creatively, taking on a can-do collaborative approach, and working with passion - it is a core part of how we love to help people explore the future.
We also look for these interpersonal skills (being a ‘Brinkster’):
- Growth mindset: keen and eager to experiment and learn, comfortable with not knowing all the answers yet and happy to let stuff go when it doesn’t quite hit the mark
- Is ‘interoperable’: quickly establishes rapport with all kinds of people
- Enjoys ‘making others shine': Brink is a low-ego zone that thrives on making our colleagues, clients and collaborators shine
- Self-starter, proactive, can 'get on with it', has a sense of agency and a point of view
How we work
- A team of around 30 that genuinely enjoy spending time together, online and in person where possible.
- Remote-first approach.
- If based in the UK, you can work outside of the UK for a maximum of 100 days within the tax year. If based elsewhere, local tax laws regarding working abroad apply.
- Flexible working hours; you take ownership over how you get your work done.
- Dedicated learning time at our ‘Dojo Days’.
- Certain set days over the year where we require the team to be together in real life. This is usually for around one week in mid January and for another week in mid July. Depending on your location it may also include travel and overnight stays.
In addition to your annual salary you’ll have access to extra things to support you to be your best self, in and out of the office.
🐙 A role that isn’t available for anyone else and shaped around you and your interests
🏖 ‘Take what you need’ annual leave
🧠 Dedicated coaching for your mental health and wellbeing from Sanctus
🎒 Brink retreats and away days
📚 Kindle with unlimited books
🎓 Generous training budget
🏡 Workspace expense budget for working from home
🚴♀️ Access to a cycle to work scheme (if in UK)
🐣 16 weeks full pay parental leave
How to apply
If you’re interested in joining us, please click on our beautiful ‘apply here’ button below. This will take you to an online application form where we will ask you to upload your CV as well as a response to the following questions:
- It’s 20 years from today. What are you most excited about with regards to one sector you’ve worked with?
This upload can be a video, voice recording, PDF or any other format which you would prefer - we’re open to the weird and wonderful! As long as you keep it to roughly a 2 minute read/watch/listen and under 50mb.
- Please share at least one example of your work you’re proudest of that shows a process and final output of a futures method you have led, including what makes you feel proud about it.
Please be as creative as you are comfortable with and choose any structure or layout to present your information, but remember to keep it under 50mb.
Please note that once you are in the online application form, there is no option to save and return. So please feel free to pop in just to have a look and come back later when you're ready.
📅 The deadline for this application is 10AM UK time on Thursday March 2nd. You will receive an email from the system to confirm your application has been received and we will be in touch (we aim for within 2 weeks) to let you know if we’ll be taking it further.
- Application Launch: Monday 13th February
- Closing date: Thursday 2nd March
- First stage interviews: w/c Monday 27th March
- Second stage interview: w/c Monday 3rd April
- Final offer by: w/c Monday 10th April
- Start date: As soon as possible after that
🔗 Our commitment as Brink
Diversity is in our DNA at Brink and we’re proud of the broad range of Brinksters we have on board. We also know there is always room for improvement which is why we track diversity in all its guises to see how we’re doing, and make efforts to cast our hiring net as wide as possible. Our latest survey shows we could do better in some areas, so we’re particularly encouraging applications from people of the Global Ethnic Majority, people over 50, parents, neurodiverse people and/or those living with a disability.
All qualified applicants will receive consideration for employment without regard to race, religion, gender, gender identity or expression, sexual orientation, disability or age. We are happy to discuss any reasonable adjustments individuals may require in the recruitment process, on commencement, or once in post.
❓❗ Questions that people often ask us
How many years of experience do I need to have?
We don’t like to score people based on the “number of years” or higher education qualifications they have to show. We do think this role needs someone whose career is underway though, and we certainly need to see evidence of the key skills we’ve mentioned, as well as ability to work directly with clients.
Where is this role based?
Brink is a remote team and we work all over the place from London, Paris, Nairobi, Kigali and Amsterdam. For this role our preference is for UK, Rwanda or Kenya based applicants, however we will consider (on a case by case basis) candidates based in countries that are on London time +/- 3 hours.
Please note that we are unable to employ anyone that does not have the right to work in the country they live in and work from. If you plan to work on an existing visa, there is a section on the application form where you can let us know the type and expiry date.
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