Research Opportunities - Internships

Your chance to work with LSE academics on research projects related to your own field of study.

Fortunately, I was not left entirely to my own devices. Dr Chen, my project advisor, was always there to nudge me in the right direction when I was stuck... 

Read Jeria Kua's reflections on his internship in the Department of Statistics


During an internship, students work with LSE academics to assist them in their research projects. Research internships are normally paid. Some internships are open to students within a specific department, while others are open to any undergraduate students at LSE. 


Department of Anthropology

The Department of Anthropology coordinates a Summer Ethnography Project for undergraduates in the department moving between years 2 and 3. Participants propose their own project, receive initial guidance from academic staff, then carry out the work independently.

Please watch departmental communications for future opportunities.

Department of Economic History

The Department has offered internships to undergraduates and taught masters students since 2017, investigating topics from apprenticeship in the 18th century to the investments of colonial governments in 1913.

Please watch departmental communications for future opportunities.

"The experience not only gave me the chance to develop my coding abilities, but also provided crucial context for my own research. It undoubtedly contributed to the success of my undergraduate dissertation."

Read student reflections and information on previous projects.


Department of Geography and Environment

The Department have run a fellowship scheme since 2018/19, with projects in 2020/21 including residential property taxation, climate agreements, migration policy and homelessness, and virtual fieldwork: designing a teaching package using VR videos.

Applications open annually, normally in the early Michaelmas term. Watch the Department website and communications for information about upcoming opportunities.  

"Our ambition is that these fellowships will serve as a model for fostering a more inclusive research community within LSE."
Dr Richard Perkins describes the programme’s inception

"I thought ‘I’ve got no chance but I’ll just try anyway.’... I would definitely encourage anyone to do it."
Eleonore Lorijn on assisting Professor Vernon Henderson investigating the impact of colonialism on the built environment in African cities

Department of Government

The Department has been offering internships since 2015.

Watch departmental newsletters and the Department’s undergraduate Moodle page for information.

Internships last year researched topics including the World Bank and regime change (with Dr Omar McDoom) authoritarian populism and voting (with Dr Joe Greenwood-Hau) and power-sharing in divided societies (with Professor Paul Mitchell)

Read student experiences from 2017 including research on distributional politics in Malawi, electoral violence in Uganda  and transnational advocacy and activism in the contemporary Middle East

Department of International History

The department offers assistantships to undergraduate students who are interested in contributing to the research projects of staff members through the completion of specific tasks. These are an opportunity to collaborate with a staff member in their research, gain experience of working on a project, and add depth to a CV.

Past projects have included: anti-colonial activism; history of slavery and emancipation; the Vietnam War in Latin America; insurrection and abolition: Cuba, 1843-44; human rights and the Iranian Revolution; US-China transnational relations in the 1970s.

“I feel like I've got a much better understanding of the academic process and the various stages involved in it — it is a great opportunity to see the kind of readings studied at undergraduate level from a 'behind the scenes' perspective.”

Harriet, assistant in 2020/21

Please watch departmental communications for future opportunities.

Department of International Relations

The Department is offering undergraduate research internships in 2020/21. Read more about the scheme here, with details of past projects, eligibility criteria, the application process and an ‘Internship Guide’.

Please watch the scheme’s website and departmental communications for future opportunities.

"I learned a lot about the rigour and precision behind this sort of scholarship — without even mentioning what I’ve learned from the book’s content. … Academic work can be painstaking and frustrating, but ultimately deeply rewarding.”

Colin, IR intern in 2020/21

Department of Statistics

The Department has previously supported student interns to presenting their work at conferences and publishing in journals including Annals of Actuarial Science

In 2019, Dr Yunxiao Chen supervised a second-year research project, in collaboration with Ms Sarah Hagart, Head of Management Information in the LSE Planning Division, on grade inflation at the LSE. 

Please watch departmental communications for future opportunities.

"To claim that this experience has been one of the highlights of my time in LSE is indeed no exaggeration."
Jeria, intern in 2019

Internships in businesses and organisations

Some departments at the LSE facilitate internships for undergraduates in businesses and other external organisations, which can involve research. 

The Department of International Relations facilitates work in small to medium-sized companies. In 2020, five undergraduate students took up internships at a number of organisations ranging from refugee advocacy trusts to communications consultancies. The scheme offers funding to students undertaking internships that would be otherwise be unpaid and therefore might not be feasible to do. Read more about their experiences.

The Department of Social Policy also runs an Internships Scheme - in conjunction with LSE Careers - to help support its students in getting involved with 'real world' work and research opportunities with charities and small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs). 

"I was given significant responsibility and felt that I was making a genuine impact to The Childhood Trust’s cause."
Reflections from interns Menna Bishop and Nohamin Solomon.

If you are interested in gaining research experience outside of a university environment, contact your department or LSE Careers.

Phelan United States Centre

The Phelan United States Centre encourages US-related interdisciplinary collaborations between academics and undergraduate student research assistants. 

Topics investigated by the 2020-21 cohort include: How using Zoom has changed Congressional hearings on economic policy (Professor Cheryl Schonhardt-Bailey, UGRA Matthew Bradbury), Charismatic infrastructure for climate change adaptation in the US (Dr Rebecca Elliott, UGRA Emily Douglas), How US state institutions seek to control socially marginalised women (Dr Amanda Sheely, UGRA Sarah Ang) and the acceleration of prison reform in the age of COVID-19 (Dr Johann Koehler, UGRA Hawa Patel).

Research Assistants and LSE academics participating in this programme have been drawn from a range of departments: Economics, Government, International History, International Relations, Social Policy, Geography and Environment, and Philosophy, Logic and Scientific Method. Read more about the 2020/21 programme.

Applications open annually, normally in the early Michaelmas term. Please watch departmental communications for future opportunities.

"Blown away by the brilliance of my UGRA Emily. I would have made exactly zero progress on this project without her work and her work is just so, so good.”
Dr Rebecca Elliot