'Weirdos and misfits' wanted to help reshape Britain's civil service

Credit: Reuters Studio
Published on January 3, 2020 - Duration: 01:33s

'Weirdos and misfits' wanted to help reshape Britain's civil service

Dominic Cummings, the senior adviser to Boris Johnson who plotted Brexit and steered his boss to last month's election triumph, is on the lookout for "weirdos and misfits with odd skills" to help bring new ideas to Britain's government.

Joe Davies reports.

'Weirdos and misfits' wanted to help reshape Britain's civil service

Dominic Cummings: the brains behind the Leave campaign's victory in the 2016 Brexit referendum and Boris Johnson's landslide re-election last month.

He's made no secret of his disdain for much of the way Britain's civil service operates.

And this new year it seems he's taking a different approach to shake things up.



Policy experts!

And "assorted weirdos." Cummings is appealling in this blog post directly to the brightest brains in the country to deal with what he calls "some profound problems at the core of how the British state makes decisions".

"We want to hire an unusual set of people" he wrote, "with different skills and backgrounds to work in Downing Street".

These range from data scientists and economists to "misfits with odd skills".

He wants project managers with bravado and little bureaucracy, in a way he's comparing to the Manhattan Project that made the atom bomb and the Apollo lunar program.

He goes on: "VERY clever people either straight out of university or recently out with extreme curiosity and capacity for hard work".

But there's a warning.

"You will not have weekday date nights, you will sacrifice many weekends - frankly it will be hard having a boy or girlfriend at all." There's no room for "confident public school bluffers" and "if you play office politics, you will be discovered and immediately binned".

If it sounds appealing to you, Cummings has released a new gmail address on his blog for applications.

And he urges anyone who thinks they've been "insanely ignored" in the process to "persist for a while".

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