Max Neufeind

MSc International Employment Relations and Human Resource Management, 2011
Policy Strategy Desk Officer, German Federal Ministry of Labour and Social Affairs

Please describe your career path to date

Before attending LSE I did a master’s degree in Work and Organizational Psychology. I went to LSE to enrich my knowledge about the functioning of organisations and the individual's perspective on working life by some expertise on labour markets and the policy choices that shape working life in different countries - here LSE helped me a lot. After finishing my studies at LSE I combined these two fields of expertise by pursuing a PhD in Applied Psychology at ETH Zurich, which I finished in 2013.

Tell us about your current job

My responsibility at my current job is to translate the on-going changes of the world of work into policy choices. In particular, I try elaborating with my colleagues how labour and social policy can help to make working lives more motivating, healthy and innovative. One of the central issues I am currently working on is how labour and social policy can respond to the digitalisation of our economies and societies.

LSE did a great job in preparing me for these responsibilities: I learned how to synthesise large amounts of information, how to formulate policy options and how to work together with colleagues from different disciplinary backgrounds.

Why did you choose this job?

This job allows me to combine my expertise on issues of the changing world of work with my fascination for policy making.

What do you like most about your job? Is there anything that you dislike?

I like that I get access to the most recent information and cutting-edge studies and secondly, that I can contribute to actually improving the working lives of thousands of people.

What career plans do you have for the future?

I think I will stay in policy making for some years, but this must definitively include staying abroad, for example at an international organization such as OECD or ILO. In the longer run I can also imagine combining policy making with academia.

Thinking back, why did you choose your degree subject and why did you choose LSE?

I chose my degree subject because I wanted to combine my expertise on Work and Organizational Psychology, with some knowledge on the functioning of labour market and policy making in the field in labour and social issues. I chose LSE because the school is very much policy focused and has a truly international outlook.

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

LSE helped me to learn how to synthesise large amounts of information, how to work with people from different disciplinary backgrounds, and how to formulate policy options. Furthermore, the international faculty and my fellow students did a great job in broadening my outlook from a more or less European to a truly global perspective.

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

I would advise prospective students to choose a field not by assumed employment opportunities but by what really matters to them. My experience is: In a globalised world you will always find a rewarding job in this field, as long as you make it your field.

Furthermore, I would advise them to use the time a LSE to get into contact with those people who actually work in this field - LSE is a great place for these kinds of conversations.

Overall, how do you look back on your LSE experience?

My stay at LSE was one of my best experiences so far. LSE gave me the opportunity not only to understand the most pressing issues of society but also to discuss possible answers to these issues with dedicated lecturers and a truly international body of students. Thus, LSE gave me a more global perspective both in terms of the knowledge I acquired and the friends I made. LSE is as much about the people you meet as the degree you pursue - this is what makes LSE quite unique.

Max Neufeind