Martin Karlsson

BSc International Relations, 2014
Adviser for European Affairs, Sweden European Office

Please describe your career path to date

I completed an internship with the UN and also one with the Swedish embassy in Tokyo. After completing my internship in Tokyo I went on to study a master’s degree. I have since returned to Europe and I now work in Brussels as part of the representation office for two Swedish counties.

Has your career path developed as you planned?

My career path has not exactly turned out as I had thought. While studying at LSE I thought I would have a career more closely linked to foreign policy. However, I chose to do an interdisciplinary Master's program and got involved with different research projects that dealt with innovation policy and international governance, which led me to the path that I am on today.    

Tell us about your current job   

I monitor European policy in many different fields, mainly cohesion policy, innovation policy and social policy. I help my employers to get the most out of the EU and to influence the policy process to ensure that European policy fits my employers' needs. In my work it's very important to be a good generalist - to be able to read up quickly on many different policy areas and to identify the points of interest to my employers.

Why did you choose this job?   

I wanted to start a career in Brussels and this was a great opportunity to do so. It is also extremely interesting and allows me to learn about different things.

How has your time at LSE helped you so far in your career? 

Through examinations and summative assessments I have developed strong analytical skills which have proved very useful. Additionally, I met and built relationships with many aspiring people and I can now tap into a global network of successful alumni.

What advice would you give to prospective or current LSE students?   

I did not think too much about my career while at the LSE as I was focused on my studies and having fun. Many of my fellow students were very focused on their careers and were constantly stressed. My recommendation is to focus on the experience of being a student surrounded by other intelligent students from all over the world. Your time at the LSE will be the best opportunity of your life to expand your horizons and really challenge your own way of thinking - so my advice would be to focus on that.  With the LSE on your CV you will always have a career within reach.

Martin Karlsson