We provide expert advice to government departments in areas including contingent risks, insurance, pensions, and social security.
The field of data science permeates all these areas. Advancing techniques enable us to interrogate and interpret data in more ways than before.
As part of this investment in this field, GAD is sponsoring several people to undertake apprenticeships in data science. Subjects studied cover a diverse range of topics related to data science:
- technical (such as machine learning)
- practical (such as techniques for data visualisation)
- theoretical (pure maths foundations like calculus and algebra)
- philosophical (considering the ethical risks of data science applications in the real world)
One of the data science apprentices is GAD Analyst Mathew Garvin, who’s undertaking a degree-level apprenticeship course. It uses a combination of distance learning, intensive classroom-based sessions and work-based projects.
Talking about his experience as a data science apprentice, Mathew Garvin said: “I’ve learned new techniques for numerical analysis and programming and insights on other skills such as problem solving and report writing.
“Everything I’ve learned so far, and over the next 2 years of the course, will help me contribute to GAD’s provision of expert actuarial advice to the public sector.
“Overall, it means these extra skills in data science will help me improve the quality of our solutions and provide value for money to the taxpayer.”
The work of the data science apprentices is core to GAD’s investment in these skills, especially as a way to future proof our ways of working. As with other apprentices, the people studying data science get regular study time.
The learning provides some integration between day-to-day work activities and on-the-job training. The data science apprentices are part of GAD’s overall apprentices programme. The department has apprentices in buildings and facilities management, business development, project management and HR.