Andrew took a BA in law at Cambridge University and trained as a barrister. He then worked as a Welfare Rights Officer in Islington. During this time he was an active member of the Child Poverty Action Group and the anti-Poll Tax campaign. Andrew subsequently studied for an MA which he 'rolled over' into a D/Phil at the University of York. While completing his D/Phil Andrew did a stint as a part-time researcher with the Scottish Poverty Information Unit at Glasgow Caledonian University, where he contributed to developing Scottish deprivation data to inform the new Scottish Executive. Andrew came to Birmingham in 2000 as a research fellow on the ESRC-funded project, 'Power, Participation and Democratic Renewal.' He was appointed to a lectureship in Sociology in 2002, and, along with colleagues from that Department, moved to POLSIS in 2010.