Outside Insight



Outside Insight

Outside Insight is a work shadowing scheme developed by higher education institutions in and around London. It aims to provide work shadowing opportunities for staff across partner institutions.

Work shadowing allows you to spend time (typically half a day but can be more) observing the work of a member of staff in a department or role of interest from a participating institution in order to gain insight into work in that area. This scheme encourages professional development through observation and active engagement with other professionals and allows you to bring back knowledge of work practices from other universities.

Partner institutions

  • Anglia Ruskin University
  • Brunel University of London
  • City, University of London
  • Imperial College London
  • London School of Hygiene and Tropical Medicine
  • London South Bank University
  • Queen Mary, University of London
  • Royal Holloway, University of London
  • Royal Veterinary College, University of London
  • SOAS University of London
  • St George's, University of London
  • University of East London
  • University of Greenwich
  • University of Hertfordshire
  • University of London
  • University of Roehampton

Please note that not all institutions participate each year. Please refer to the application form for the current list.

Application process

Applications for 2022 are now closed. Details of the next application round will be shared in the staff newsletter.

  1. Please read the Outside Insight guidelines on the website including information about data protection.
  2. Discuss your application with your line manager and ensure they agree to your participation before applying.
  3. Complete the application form by the closing date. 
  4. When selecting your preferred institution(s), you may wish to visit their website to see if they are a good match in relation to the service you wish to shadow. The more information you are able to find provide about the role you would like to shadow, the better the chances of finding the right host.
  5. We will share your request with the coordinators of the other institutions belonging to the scheme to find a host. When a possible host has been found, their coordinator will seek agreement from the relevant member of staff to host your visit. Once agreed, you will be given the contact details for your host and you will arrange a convenient date/time for the visit.
  6. A programme outline form will be agreed between you and the person you will be shadowing, addressing your specific objectives. The form also covers confidentiality, health and safety, and practical issues.
  7. The person doing the shadowing will be asked to complete a short evaluation survey after their visit.

Staff applying should have passed their probationary period.

Please contact Joy Willshire for more information about the scheme.



As a Shadow  - “Just wanted to let you know that I very much enjoyed my 2 days shadowing the xxx team at City University."

As a Host  - “This was an incredibly useful experience for both the visitor and the host institution. The sharing of ideas, best practices and building professional relationships within our own sector has been invaluable.”