Forward Process, Protocols Team - AI Safety Institute

Department for Science, Innovation & Technology

Apply before 11:55 pm on Monday 22nd July 2024

 

Details

Reference number

360639

Salary

£38,860 - £46,750
National: £38,860 - £42,765 London: £42,495 - £46,750
A Civil Service Pension with an average employer contribution of 27%

Job grade

Senior Executive Officer

Contract type

Fixed term
Loan

Length of employment

24

Business area

DSIT - Science, Innovation and Growth - AI Safety Institute

Type of role

Policy

Working pattern

Flexible working, Full-time, Job share, Part-time

Number of jobs available

1

Contents

Birmingham, Darlington, Edinburgh, London, Manchester

Job summary

AI Safety Institute  

Advances in artificial intelligence (AI) over the last decade have been impactful, rapid, and unpredictable. Advanced AI systems have the potential to drive economic growth and productivity, boost health and wellbeing, improve public services, and increase security.  

But advanced AI systems also pose significant risks, as detailed in the government’s paper on Capabilities and Risks from Frontier AI published in October. AI can be misused – this could include using AI to generate disinformation, conduct sophisticated cyberattacks or help develop chemical weapons. AI can cause societal harms – there have been examples of AI chatbots encouraging harmful actions, promoting skewed or radical views, and providing biased advice. AI generated content that is highly realistic but false could reduce public trust in information. Some experts are concerned that humanity could lose control of advanced systems, with potentially catastrophic and permanent consequences. We will only unlock the benefits of AI if we can manage these risks. At present, our ability to develop powerful systems outpaces our ability to make them safe. The first step is to better understand the capabilities and risks of these advanced AI systems. This will then inform our regulatory framework for AI, so we ensure AI is developed and deployed safely and responsibly.  

The UK is taking a leading role in driving this conversation forward internationally. We hosted the world’s first major AI Safety Summit and have launched the AI Safety Institute. Responsible government action in an area as new and fast-paced as advanced AI requires governments to develop their own sophisticated technical and sociotechnical expertise. The AI Safety Institute is advancing the world’s knowledge of AI safety by carefully examining, evaluating, and testing new types of AI, so that we understand what each new model is capable of. The Institute is conducting fundamental research on how to keep people safe in the face of fast and unpredictable progress in AI. The Institute will make its work available to the world, enabling an effective global response to the opportunities and risks of advanced AI.  

We welcome applications from individuals of all personal and professional backgrounds to play a key role in one of societies greatest changes. 

Job description

Protocols Team 

The AI Safety Institute was established by the Prime Minister in November 2023 as the first state-backed organisation dedicated to advanced AI safety research for the public good. The development of advanced AI promises huge benefits, but the attached risks are also significant. The protocols team leads two key areas of work:  

  • The risk and capability thresholds and strategy work which underpins our technical team’s evaluations of today’s frontier AI models.  
  • The UK’s input into international agreements and diplomacy on the standards and governance approaches necessary for promoting AI safety and mitigating attached risks.  

You will work as part of the AISI Protocols team to design and implement protocols to support the delivery of international AI safety standards. 

Responsibilities:  

  • Helping to develop the underpinning policy for future voluntary collaboration between the UK and other partners on AI safety, building on progress made at the AI Safety Summit in Seoul, and drawing directly on the technical research from the AI safety institute. This will involve:

- Collaborating with the technical researchers in the AI Safety Institute, and developing a rich and deep understanding of their work; 

- Overseeing the process for agreeing future text at future summits; 

- Ensuring we engage with international and industry partners for future AI Safety summits; 

- Collaborating, and building deep relationships, with international partner countries and counterparts. 

  • The postholder will be expected to project manage the wider team's "forward process", ensuring we stick to agreed objectives and maintain a steady rhythm of progress towards future summits. You will need to work in close collaboration with colleagues across the Department and internationally. 
  • You will need to develop and maintain an understanding of economic, social, political, environmental and technological developments to ensure activity is relevant.  
  • You will be responsible for ensuring plans and activities in the team reflect wider strategic priorities and communicate this effectively to senior leaders. 

The individual will be recruited to a blended policy and technical team and will work very closely with the AI Safety Institute’s Research Unit. 

Person specification

  • An interest in AI policy and strategy capabilities. You can deliver at pace to tight deadlines, and are adept at collaborating across Government to advance policy understanding.  
  • Strong organisational skills, with an ability to demonstrate strong abilities to grip complex projects, and translate plans to delivery.
  • Experience of project management is desirable.  
  • A can-do attitude, able to work effectively at pace, and remain calm and resilient under pressure.  
  • To have a proactive approach and a focus on continuous improvement of self and service, with an appetite to work with others to simplify processes and increase efficiency.   

Behaviours

We'll assess you against these behaviours during the selection process:

  • Delivering at Pace
  • Communicating and Influencing
  • Making Effective Decisions
Alongside your salary of £38,860, Department for Science, Innovation & Technology contributes £10,492 towards you being a member of the Civil Service Defined Benefit Pension scheme. Find out what benefits a Civil Service Pension provides.

The Department for Science, Innovation and Technology offers a competitive mix of benefits including:

  • A culture of flexible working, such as job sharing, homeworking and compressed hours.
  • Automatic enrolment into the Civil Service Pension Scheme, with an average employer contribution of 27%.
  • A minimum of 25 days of paid annual leave, increasing by 1 day per year up to a maximum of 30.
  • An extensive range of learning & professional development opportunities, which all staff are actively encouraged to pursue.
  • Access to a range of retail, travel and lifestyle employee discounts.

Office attendance

The Department operates a discretionary hybrid working policy, which provides for a combination of working hours from your place of work and from your home in the UK. The current expectation for staff is to attend the office or non-home based location for 40-60% of the time over the accounting period.

Selection process details

This vacancy is using Success Profiles (opens in a new window), and will assess your Behaviours, Strengths and Experience.

As part of the application process you will be asked to complete a CV and personal statement. Further details around what this will entail are listed on the application form.

Your CV should be no more than 2 pages long and should show us your work history and previous experience. It should be well structured, succinct and written in clear language.

Please use your personal statement (in no more than 750 words) to provide examples of how your skills and experience match those needed for this role. Consider giving an example for each bullet point, in the ‘Who you are’ section and use work you have completed to demonstrate how you meet each one.

Please note - the CV incorporated into the application form is for information purposes only and will not be scored. Sift will be conducted on the personal statement.

The interview will be conducted on Behaviours and Strengths.

For Behaviours, use the link here to understand the expectations at the grade of role you are applying for: Level 4 – G7. You can find out definitions of Strengths here.  

We highly recommend learning about Success Profiles and using the Situation, Task, Action, Result and Reflection (STARR) framework when structuring your answers. In your examples you should include evidence on ‘how’ you demonstrated the requirements and the impact of your work, as well as ‘what’ you did.

Sift and interview dates

Expected Timeline subject to change

Sift dates: w/c 22/07/2024

Interview dates: w/c 29/07/2024. 

Interview Location: MS Teams.

Candidates are asked to note the above timetable, exercising flexibility through the recruitment and selection process.

Further Information

Existing Civil Servants and applicants from accredited NDPBs are eligible to apply,and can be considered on loan basis (Civil Servants) or secondment (accredited NDPBs). Prior agreement to be released on a loan basis must be obtained before commencing the application process. In the case of Civil Servants, the terms of the loan will be agreed between the home and host department and the Civil Servant. This includes grade on return.

Reasonable Adjustment

We are proud to be a disability confident leader and we welcome applications from disabled candidates and candidates with long-term conditions.

We fully support adjustments throughout our recruitment process and we encourage candidates to discuss their adjustment needs by emailing the job contact which can be found under the contact point for applicants section.

We do not have an exhaustive list of adjustments that we support but just some examples include additional time to complete your application form, behaviour questions up to 72 hours prior to interview and having extra time at interview.

If you are experiencing accessibility problems with any attachments on this advert, please contact the email address in the 'Contact point for applicants' section.

If successful and transferring from another Government Department a criminal record check may be carried out.

New entrants are expected to join on the minimum of the pay band.

A location-based reserve list of successful candidates will be kept for 12 months. Should another role become available within that period you may be offered this position.

Please note terms and conditions are attached. Please take time to read the document to determine how these may affect you.

Any move to the Department for Science, Innovation and Technology from another employer will mean you can no longer access childcare vouchers. This includes moves between government departments. You may however be eligible for other government schemes, including Tax Free Childcare. Determine your eligibility https://www.childcarechoices.gov.uk

DSIT does not normally offer full home working (i.e. working at home); but we do offer a variety of flexible working options (including occasionally working from home). 

DSIT cannot offer Visa sponsorship to candidates through this campaign.

DSIT holds a Visa sponsorship licence but this can only be used for certain roles and this campaign does not qualify.

In order to process applications without delay, we will be sending a Criminal Record Check to Disclosure and Barring Service /Disclosure Scotland on your behalf.

However, we recognise in exceptional circumstances some candidates will want to send their completed forms direct. If you will be doing this, please advise Government Recruitment Service of your intention by emailing Pre-EmploymentChecks.grs@cabinetoffice.gov.uk stating the job reference number in the subject heading. 

For further information on the Disclosure Scotland confidential checking service telephone: the Disclosure Scotland Helpline on 0870 609 6006 and ask to speak to the operations manager in confidence, or email Info@disclosurescotland.co.uk 

Applicants who are successful at interview will be, as part of pre-employment screening, subject to a check on the Internal Fraud Database (IFD). This check will provide information about employees who have been dismissed for fraud or dishonesty offences. This check also applies to employees who resign or otherwise leave before being dismissed for fraud or dishonesty had their employment continued. Any applicant’s details held on the IFD will be refused employment. 

A candidate is not eligible to apply for a role within the Civil Service if the application is made within a 5-year period following a dismissal for carrying out internal fraud against government.

If you have any queries about the role, or wish to discuss, please contact clara.pelly@dsit.gov.uk. 

Vetting

For further information on National Security Vetting please visit the following page https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/demystifying-vetting

Please be aware the levels of national security clearance are changing which may impact on the level needed for this role by the time of appointment. All efforts will be made to keep candidates informed of any changes and what that will mean in terms of vetting criteria. For more information please See our vetting charter

Feedback



Feedback will only be provided if you attend an interview or assessment.

Security

Successful candidates must undergo a criminal record check.
Successful candidates must meet the security requirements before they can be appointed. The level of security needed is security check (opens in a new window).

See our vetting charter (opens in a new window).
People working with government assets must complete baseline personnel security standard (opens in new window) checks.

Nationality requirements

This job is broadly open to the following groups:

  • UK nationals
  • nationals of the Republic of Ireland
  • nationals of Commonwealth countries who have the right to work in the UK
  • nationals of the EU, Switzerland, Norway, Iceland or Liechtenstein and family members of those nationalities with settled or pre-settled status under the European Union Settlement Scheme (EUSS) (opens in a new window)
  • nationals of the EU, Switzerland, Norway, Iceland or Liechtenstein and family members of those nationalities who have made a valid application for settled or pre-settled status under the European Union Settlement Scheme (EUSS)
  • individuals with limited leave to remain or indefinite leave to remain who were eligible to apply for EUSS on or before 31 December 2020
  • Turkish nationals, and certain family members of Turkish nationals, who have accrued the right to work in the Civil Service
Further information on nationality requirements (opens in a new window)

Working for the Civil Service

The Civil Service Code (opens in a new window) sets out the standards of behaviour expected of civil servants.

We recruit by merit on the basis of fair and open competition, as outlined in the Civil Service Commission's recruitment principles (opens in a new window).
The Civil Service embraces diversity and promotes equal opportunities. As such, we run a Disability Confident Scheme (DCS) for candidates with disabilities who meet the minimum selection criteria.
The Civil Service also offers a Redeployment Interview Scheme to civil servants who are at risk of redundancy, and who meet the minimum requirements for the advertised vacancy.

Diversity and Inclusion

The Civil Service is committed to attract, retain and invest in talent wherever it is found. To learn more please see the Civil Service People Plan (opens in a new window) and the Civil Service Diversity and Inclusion Strategy (opens in a new window).
This vacancy is part of the Great Place to Work for Veterans (opens in a new window) initiative.
Once this job has closed, the job advert will no longer be available. You may want to save a copy for your records.

Contact point for applicants

Job contact :

  • Name : Eleanor Russell
  • Email : eleanor.russell@dsit.gov.uk

Recruitment team

  • Email : dsitresourcing.grs@cabinetoffice.gov.uk

Further information

Appointment to the Civil Service is governed by the Civil Service Commission’s Recruitment Principles. If you feel that your application has not been treated in accordance with the recruitment principles, and wish to make a complaint, then you should contact in the first instance dsitresourcing.GRS@cabinetoffice.gov.uk. If you are not satisfied with the response that you receive, then you can contact the Civil Service Commission. For further information on bringing a complaint to the Civil Service Commission please visit their web pages at: https://civilservicecommission.independent.gov.uk/contact-us/

Attachments

DSIT T&Cs v1.2 Opens in new window (docx, 179kB)

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