Gavin is chief executive of the Resolution Trust and chair of the Living Wage Commission (which sets the fair pay benchmark across the UK and London). Previously he was chief executive of the Resolution Foundation (2010–15), deputy chief of staff at 10 Downing Street, a member of the Council of Economic Advisors at HM Treasury, senior advisor to the secretary of state at the Department for Education, and a member of the Downing Street Policy Unit.
Prior to working in government, Gavin was research director of the Institute of Public Policy Research (IPPR) and a research fellow at the University of Sheffield where he received his doctorate. He sits on the board of the Resolution Foundation, the journal Political Quarterly, the Washington Centre for Equitable Growth and the Sheffield Political Economy Research Institute (SPERI) at the University of Sheffield. He writes on economics, politics and public policy and is currently editing a book on the British model after Brexit.