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Political Risk Analyst

What is a political risk analyst and what do they do?

Broadly speaking, the role of a political risk analyst is to examine a range of data (from trade and economic data to conflict and political information) to offer advice and guidance to others on the global situation relevant to their client’s, or their employer’s, work.

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What are the different types of political risk analyst?

A political risk analyst could:

  • Work on behalf of a commercial organisation, providing relevant information to support investment decisions and mitigate the risk of operating globally
  • Work on behalf of, or advise, governments or non-governmental organisations (NGOs) in relation to international policy.

Alongside the differences in clients, the analyst may:

  • Focus on a country or region – for example being an expert on a broad range of issues in relation to a particular country
  • Focus on particular issues across countries and regions – for example being an expert in security matters and how these vary around the world.

What qualifications are needed to become a political risk analyst?

The following subjects in may be particularly relevant:

  • Politics
  • Economics
  • International relations
  • Journalism
  • Modern languages.

A Masters degree could also be a distinct advantage, as could a further research qualification (e.g. a PhD) and these can be a requirement for some roles.

At the University of Law, we offer these courses to help you to become a Political Risk Analyst?

What skills do you need?

As a political risk analyst, you'll need:

  • A real interest in politics and current affairs with topical knowledge of political and international developments and trends
  • Excellent communication skills to express complex information clearly and, where required, persuasively
  • Research and analysis skills to gathering, sift and evaluating large quantities of information
  • Numerical skills to understand data and statistics, as well as economic and financial information.
  • Cultural awareness to work in an international environment.

How do you become a political risk analyst in the UK?

This is a very difficult area to get into, but you will get a good understanding of what is required of candidates by researching potential employers, which could include:

  • Think tanks
  • NGOs
  • ‘Risk’ departments of commercial companies.

For many, a relevant background in a region or past employment related to a specialist theme (e.g. financial services, the military or security) can be a distinct advantage.

Without this you will need:

  • A strong academic record, potentially pursing postgraduate qualifications
  • Work experience in policy or politics at a national or international level (or equivalent, more commercially focused experience, in the private sector)
  • Demonstrable interest in this area of work through publications, conference attendance, and networking opportunities.

How much do political risk analysts get paid?

Starting salaries for junior roles would typically be in the region of £25,000. With experience, salaries will increase significantly but with so varied an entry route into this work, and variety of employers and clients, there are huge differences for more senior figures.

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