David Li

David Li

Country risk, #

MSc Economics, 2014

Why did you choose to study at LSE and how did you choose which programme to study?

I have always been aware of LSE’s global reputation of academic excellence and industry relevance. Moreover, LSE is one of the most international academic institutions in the world and I would be able to expose myself to a global community and strong alumni networks. Further, LSE’s Economics programme is one of the best in the world. Choosing it became an obvious choice.

How did you find the student experience at LSE?

The teaching style in LSE’s Economics programme forces me to stay driven, motivated, and independent. Support is ample as all my professors are there to help when I need them. But I had to learn to seek them out on my own and formulate my queries and needs coherently. This helped me a lot in my workplace. Outside of school, London is one of the greatest cities in the world and there was not a dull moment. The structure of schoolwork meant that I can set my own schedule and experience the city as much as I can.

Please describe your career path to date:

I've had three positions since I left LSE, I started off as a Economic Affairs Consultant at the United Nations. LSE has a very positive reputation at the UN and the quantitative training I received helped me a lot with the analysis work. Also, LSE got me comfortable with being with people of difference backgrounds and that really helped me setting in the team. I then worked in Economic Consulting, where I was a professional Economist and applied a lot of the Economic concepts from the MSc in real life. Currently, I work in quantifying Country Risk across countries in Asia. It's a lot more macro-based when dealing with geopolitics, regulation, and industry policies. But overall I'm still applying the same approach to solving problems and the MSc Economics provided really good training for that.

Tell us about your current job:

I work in the field of forecasting political risk. The work involves being up-to-date with current events and making forecasts and risk scores based on those indicators. Main skills involves having a broad knowledge on geopolitics in the region I am covering, the capacity to digest information quickly and make analysis on implications, and also to be able to feed the information into a quantitative model to be used by clients. The work environment is very fast paced because news come in every single day. It's also a good way to combine my Economic training with geopolitics, both are fields I am interested in. My job is based in London.

Why did you choose it?

I wanted to do something related to both Economic analysis and geopolitics.

What advice do you have for LSE students who are looking to enter a similar profession to you?

One of the most important advice would be to build a strong social network at the LSE. I was able to meet people from a variety of backgrounds and experiences and it helped me formulate what I wanted to do for my career. Moreover, I would advise students to actively participate in their academic lives. LSE has many amazing teachers and researchers. I would not get a second opportunity to be so engaged in academic discussions and development.

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