Social Value Internship

Who we are

Here at Akerlof, we’re more than just a business; we’re a tight-knit family of awesome people who are pretty darn good at what we do. And we’re all about doing what’s right, even if it means choosing the road less travelled, rather than opting for a quick fix.

As a small organisation we are clear on who we are and what we stand for, and we’re always excited to welcome new members into our fold. Your voice matters here – seriously, everyone’s opinion counts.

What is social value?

Social value is all about creating meaningful change that benefits society as a whole. Whether it’s improving access to education, championing environmental sustainability, or supporting local communities, we’re passionate about using our skills and resources to leave the world a little better than we found it.

So, if you’re someone who dreams of making a real difference and leaving a lasting impact, you’re in the right place. Let’s roll up our sleeves and get to work!

About the job

If you are based in Cheshire or Manchester, passionate about social impact and on the lookout for the perfect summer work placement, then look no further.

Over eight weeks, you’ll be diving into research to help us understand how we can add value to the local community, build relationships with community heroes and other partners, as well as helping us to evaluate our own impact.

Ideally, we’d love for you to be based in or around Manchester or Crewe, as this recruitment relates to a local hospital development. Your week might be a mix of working from home and hanging out in a shared office in Manchester, as well as occasionally attending some face-to-face meetings in Cheshire, Birmingham or London. We’ll support you when it comes to travel expenses.

About you

We see our new intern as someone who wants to make a difference in the world. Whether you’re just starting out or you’ve already dipped your toes in the construction sector, we want to hear from you. Maybe you’re studying sustainability, or development perhaps you’re out there making waves in your local community already. And hey, if the built environment isn’t your usual stomping ground – we’ll show you why it’s one of the best sectors to work in!

If you identify with some of the behaviours and competencies below, this role might just be the perfect fit for you.

Passion for social value: Genuine interest in making a difference and creating positive change Takes the initiative: Looks for opportunities, eager to learn and try new things Team player: Enjoys working with others and values different perspectives Independent thinker: Comfortable sharing opinions, tackling challenges without taking shortcuts Adaptable: Flexible to adapt to various tasks, environments, and team dynamics Shared values: Contributes to an inclusive atmosphere where people feel respected and valued


Commitment to equity, diversity and inclusion

At Akerlof, diversity isn’t just a buzzword – it’s our strength. We’re all about creating an inclusive environment where everyone feels valued and respected.

Plus, we believe in flexible working. Most of the time, you’ll be working from home, but we can also provide access to shared working space for those who prefer the office vibe. The Akerlof team also gathers on the last Friday of every month for some face-to-face catch ups and planning.

What next?

Our commitment to diversity starts during recruitment. If you’re eager to learn more about life at Akerlof or our recruitment process, feel free to reach out to us for a chat. Just drop Ellie Jenkins a line on 07812399881 or email

Alternatively, if you’re a keen bean, you can dive right into our application form below, which will be anonymised before if lands with our team.

Our interviews will be based on the competencies and behaviours above, so make sure you have a think about times you’ve demonstrated these, in your work, studies or personal life, ahead of meeting with us.

Important stuff

Timings: Applications will close on 21 June and interviews will be held (via Teams) on 26 June. The post will commence on 8 July.

Duration: 8 weeks

Job title: Social Value Intern

Duration: £12 per hour (UK real living wage – all travel expenses covered)

Hours of work: Monday to Friday, 08:30-17:30

Application form

Jamie Hillier


With a penchant for tweed and jackets with leather arm patches, Jamie began his career as a quantity surveyor, before climbing the ladder to lead major projects for a Tier 1 contractor.

Eventually expanding his book collection beyond copies of SMM7, Jamie has interest in a broad range of subjects linked to delivering better outcomes for society and the environment.

His strategic insights on MMC and behavioural science have made their way into numerous government, industry and academic publications, including the Construction Playbook, Transforming Infrastructure Performance Roadmap to 2030, the Platform Rulebook and the RIBA DfMA Overlay.

John Handscomb


Construction is in John’s blood. Learning from his father who was a planner and project manager, John began his career by working on some iconic projects in both the public and private sector.

As a procurement expert and integrator of new ways of working, John has pioneered the integration of platform principles, DfMA processes and supply chain within over £5bn projects in the last 15 years, for some of the largest building programmes in the UK. Despite his considerable expertise, John keeps it simple, communicating complicated ideas with ease and helping to equip the industry with new knowledge and skills.

Outside of Akerlof, John enjoys his executive role with technology start-up ScanTech Digital, spending time with his family, taking trips down the football, playing a bit of golf with friends and the odd pint. 

Our name is shared with George Akerlof, a Nobel Prize-winning economist.

His seminal paper, Market for Lemons, demonstrated the devastating consequences of making decisions under the conditions of quality uncertainty and unequal information between buyers and sellers, increasing the chance of buyers ending up with a ‘lemon’.

This 50-year-old concept continues to retain parallels within the construction industry.

Through our insight and experience, we can rebalance this information asymmetry on behalf of our clients, levelling the playing field to deliver better outcomes.