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Head of Data Science New
Blackfriars, London – Hybrid working, London, London

Job Title

Head of Data Science

Job Description

£75.4k-£85.3k plus excellent benefits

Blackfriars, London – Hybrid working

We are recruiting for two Head of Data Science positions

The role

The Nesta Data Science team is looking for up to two analytical leaders with strong backgrounds delivering data-led projects. If you are motivated by using data science and analysis to solve challenging, real-world problems and improve outcomes, then this role could be for you. The Head of data science will lead a team of data scientists, analysts, and engineers to deliver high-impact projects that drive social impact for our three missions: A Healthy Life (halving obesity), a Fairer Start (improving school readiness), and a Sustainable Future (residential decarbonisation) . The successful candidate will have a strong track record of delivering data science and analysis projects for decision making, policy design, or delivery, with a passion for using their quant skills to create tangible change in society.

The team

We are a team of analytical and technical experts from a range of backgrounds bound by the drive to use our expertise to have social impact. Data Scientists work across domain areas and deliver a mixture of short and long-term projects of varying complexity. Nesta’s data science team works as a ‘practice’, delivering across the breadth of Nesta’s work, whilst acting as a home for analysts, data scientists, and engineers to develop technical competence in a supportive environment of collaborative and skilled people. We work with policy experts, arts professionals, behavioural scientists, software engineers, designers, and researchers to create solutions to some of the UK’s most intractable challenges. We strongly encourage you to reach out to us with any questions or to discuss the role in more detail. We will do our best to accommodate queries from interested applicants ahead of the deadline. Please send queries to


  • No telecommuting
  • No Agencies Please


Key Responsibilities:

The head of data science will be expected to:

  • Identify, scope, and lead the delivery of high-impact data science projects that help to deliver the organization's missions;
  • Develop deep domain expertise in at least one of Nesta’s missions, and proficiency or context awareness in the others;
  • Build and manage a team of skilled analysts, data scientists, and engineers, fostering a culture of innovation, collaboration, and continuous learning;
  • Oversee the development of clear, engaging, robust communications to convey data-driven insights to both technical and non-technical audiences, internally and externally;
  • Develop and maintain strong relationships with stakeholders across the organization and externally, advocating the value of great analysis in driving policy and social impact;
  • Stay abreast of the latest developments in data science and identify opportunities to apply them to the organization's work, and deliver a compelling programme of learning, development, and upskilling for the analytical and data science communities at Nesta;
  • Collaborate with other disciplines to ensure the effective integration of data science into broader mission projects.

The person:

Essential Skills:

  • Programming in python and operating in a cloud-based tech stack;
  • Experience using GitHub for version control;
  • Experience in delivering high-impact data science or engineering projects, with a proven ability to identify and scope opportunities for data-driven innovation;
  • Strong leadership and management skills, with the ability to build, inspire, and develop high-performing team;
  • Excellent stakeholder management and communication skills;
  • Deep expertise in analytical or data science methods;

Desirable Skills:

  • Domain knowledge in a field relevant to one of Nesta’s missions;
  • Experience in shaping and scoping the role of data science within broader multi-disciplinary projects;
  • Understanding of ethical and legal frameworks surrounding data science including QA processes and data protection;
  • Demonstrated ability to quickly build contextual competence in new domains and effectively communicate with stakeholders;
  • Passion for using data and data science to drive positive social change and improve public services.

About the Company

About Nesta We are Nesta, the UK’s innovation agency for social good. We design, test and scale solutions to society’s biggest problems. Our three missions are to give every child a fair start, help people live healthy lives, and create a sustainable future where the economy works for both people and the planet.

For over 20 years, we have worked to support, encourage and inspire innovation. We work in three roles: as an innovation partner working with frontline organisations to design and test new solutions, as a venture builder supporting new and early stage businesses, and as a system shaper creating the conditions for innovation. Harnessing the rigour of science and the creativity of design, we work relentlessly to change millions of lives for the better. Find out more at

What we offer

Salary: £75,400 - £85,300 plus array of benefits, including private medical insurance, dental insurance, the ability to buy and sell annual leave, eyecare vouchers and more

Location: This role is based in London, hybrid working arrangement with a minimum of two days in the office

Term: Permanent

Hours: This is a full-time role but we offer a range of flexible working arrangements and encourage our people to take advantage of them. Many do.

Reports to: Director of Data Science

Making an application

To apply for this role, please submit your application before 8:00am on the 8th of July 2024. Interviews will take place w/c 22nd of July 2024.

At Nesta, we believe that a diverse workforce leads to an organisation that is more innovative, more creative and gets better results.

We want our workforce to represent the diversity of the people and communities we serve. We also want our workplace to be one where different experiences, expertise and perspectives are valued, and where everyone is encouraged to grow and develop.

This means that when we are recruiting, we actively seek to reach a diverse pool of candidates. It also means that we are happy to consider any reasonable adjustments that potential employees may need to in order to be successful.

We recognise the importance of a good balance between work and home life, so we do everything we can to accommodate flexible working, including working from home, compressed or part-time hours, job shares and other arrangements.

Please just let us know in your application or at any stage throughout the process (and beyond) if these are options you’d like to explore.

To apply, please visit our website via the link below.

Contact Info

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