Data Engineering Intern


  • Internship

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Apolitical is the global platform for government. We want to become the best source of insights, inspiration and information in the world for public servants. We are building on our unique dataset to become the world’s most comprehensive database of government problems, projects, policies and people.

We are offering a 12 week full-time internship with our Data Science & Engineering team during Summer 2021, based in our London office. Hybrid/flexible working is supported and we pay the London Living Wage. The successful candidate will support our work improving our data infrastructure and tooling, which is essential as the platform scales up and we launch new features powered by big data.Application Notes


Please be prepared to upload a CV/resume and also provide a cover letter in the appropriate box. These will be reviewed side-by-side, so there is no need to duplicate information from your CV in your cover letter. Instead, we request 2-4 paragraphs outlining your interests and ambitions in the field of Data Engineering, as well as why you’d be interested in working with Apolitical specifically. This helps us to tailor our plans for the internship appropriately.

Applications received by 9am (BST) on Monday 10th May, 2021 will receive full consideration.


We hope to tailor the role to the interests of the successful candidate as far as is practical. Duties will include collaborating with the wider data and engineering teams on scalable data infrastructure to support the Apolitical platform, including databases, ETL pipelines, and internal data APIs.

More specifically, there are a number of ongoing projects to which the successful candidate might contribute:

  • contribute to our ‘knowledge graph for government’ (a comprehensive database of government problems, projects, policies and people) and build APIs to leverage the data it contains
  • contribute to user-facing features powered by the knowledge graph
  • build and maintain scheduled ETL tasks in Apache Airflow
  • deploy natural language processing workloads to an Apache Spark cluster
  • work on our pipelines for continuously streaming analytics data to help us gain insights into how public servants are using our platform


This internship would be particularly suited to anyone seeking an entry point into Data Engineering, including (but not limited to):

  • recent graduates or a university course or ‘boot-camp’ programme
  • those seeking a horizontal move from a related technical role (software development, data analysis, etc)
  • school/sixth-form leavers with the appropriate technical skills

There is no ‘identikit’ Data Engineer; we welcome applications from a variety of backgrounds and are committed to building a diverse company. We expect that the successful candidate will acquire many important new skills over the course of their internship. That said, there are a small number of essential skills, as follows:

  • Python. Candidates should mention particular libraries they have used (particularly those that are relevant to Data Engineering).
  • SQL. PostgreSQL ideally, but any other dialect is okay.
  • Strong teamwork and communication skills. We are seeking a candidate capable of highly collaborative work in the context of a small team committed to excellence.

Aside from these, there are a variety of other skills that would strengthen an application. Candidates are not expected to have pre-existing skills in a large number of these different areas, nor is this list exhaustive, but as a guide:

  • Relational database management/more advanced SQL skills
  • Coding best practices (modular code, unit testing, static type checks)
  • Git/other version control system
  • Experience with API development
  • Experience with web scraping
  • Pipenv, Docker, and/or other tools for managing virtual environments or containerisation
  • Kubernetes
  • Google Cloud Platform (or any other cloud platform such as AWS or Azure)
  • Apache Airflow
  • Apache Spark
  • Graph databases (we are especially interested in candidates with an understanding of knowledge graphs, triple-stores, and/or SPARQL queries)


The successful candidate will be paid the London Living Wage. Other perks and benefits (in addition to working with smart, kind people on one of the most important challenges of our time!) include

Flexibility: Everyone works differently. Whether it’s early mornings, late nights or a day at home, we support what gives you energy and makes you effective.

Holidays: We have unlimited holidays, trusting people to take what they need when they need. As a restorative reboot, we give everyone on the team the last Friday of every month off.

Office: We’re based in beautiful Public Hall, in the heart of Westminster and overlooking the River Thames.

Personal development: We offer regular learning days and have learning and development budgets for books, conferences, and courses.

Library: We have a constantly growing library, to which every team member contributes their favourite book. There’s also a bigger library in Public Hall.

Discounts: Exclusive discounts and rewards at over 30,000 brands.

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