As part of our online activity, St George’s House is hosting a series, In Conversation, with people distinguished in their field of activity. We hope that these Conversations will give viewers and listeners an opportunity to learn a little more about the people involved and the issues with which they are engaged. Each conversation lasts for forty-five minutes. You can enjoy them below.
Professor Sir David Omand, GCB
Sir David Omand GCB is Visiting Professor in the Department of War Studies, King’s College London, PSIA Sciences Po in Paris and the Norwegian Defence University in Oslo. His posts in British government service included UK Security and Intelligence Coordinator in the Cabinet Office after 9/11, Permanent Secretary of the Home Office, Director of the Government Communications Headquarters (GCHQ), Deputy Under-Secretary of State for Policy in the Ministry of Defence, Principal Private Secretary to the Secretary of State for Defence and Defence Counsellor in the UK Delegation to NATO Brussels. He served for seven years on the Joint Intelligence Committee (JIC).
He has published three books, Securing the State (London: Hurst 2010) and (with Prof Mark Phythian) Principled Spying: the Ethics of Secret Intelligence (Oxford 2018). His latest book How Spies Think: 10 Lessons from Intelligence was published by Penguin Viking in October 2020.
Sir Mark Moody-Stuart, KCMG
Sir Mark Moody-Stuart KCMG is a leading British businessman. Born in Antigua where he began his early education, Sir Mark then went to school in Shropshire where his interest in geology began. A degree from Cambridge followed by a PhD was prelude to the life of a travelling exploration geologist. He worked in Franco’s Spain, in Oman, Brunei, Australia, Nigeria, Turkey, Malaysia, and even the North Sea before taking up senior management roles in a range of companies. These senior roles with Shell included Exploration and Production Coordinator and Group Managing Director in the early 90s. In 1998 Sir Mark became Chairman of the Shell Group, a position he held until 2001, remaining on the board until 2005. He was non-executive chairman of Anglo American from 2001–2009 and serves on the board of Saudi Aramco. He also served on the Board of St George’s House.
In 2014, Sir Mark published his book, Responsible Leadership – Lessons from the Front Line of Sustainability and Ethics, in 2014. Former UN Secretary-General Kofi Annan wrote that the book ‘reminds us of the urgent need for responsible corporate leadership’ while former President of Ireland Mary Robinson called it, ‘an insightful book…highly relevant to the twin challenges of a post-2015 sustainable development agenda and a robust climate agreement.
David Nabarro and Fiona Godlee
Climate change has been recognised by the World Health Organisation and by the major UK professional health bodies as “the defining health challenge of our time”, which poses a dangerous and immediate threat to the health of populations in the UK and worldwide. The combined climate and nature loss crises are drivers of zoonotic diseases and disease transmission, which in combination has created a Planetary Emergency, now exacerbated by the Covid-19 global pandemic. This has emphasised the need to make a clear link in the minds of Governments and their publics around the world between human health and planetary breakdown. Furthermore, the essential measures needed to improve planetary health will also improve human health.
In September, St George’s House hosted an online consultation on the theme of Health and Climate Change, which was held in partnership with a project for Collaborative Action on Climate and Health (CATCH) and supported by the Calouste Gulbenkian Foundation (UK Branch). Introduced by our Programme Director, St George’s House: In Conversation builds on this consultation and brings together David Nabarro who will be interviewed by Fiona Godlee, Editor of the British Medical Journal.
David Nabarro is the Co-Director of the Imperial College Institute of Global Health Innovation at the Imperial College London and supports systems leadership for sustainable development through his Switzerland based social enterprise 4SD. From March 2020, David was appointed Special Envoy of WHO Director General on COVID-19. He secured his medical qualification in 1974 and has worked in over 50 countries – in communities and hospitals, governments, civil society, universities, and in United Nations (UN) programs.
David worked for the British government in the 1990s as head of Health and Population and director for Human Development in the UK Department for International Development. From 1999 to 2017 he held leadership roles in the UN system on disease outbreaks and health issues, food insecurity and nutrition, climate change and sustainable development. In October 2018, David received the World Food Prize together with Lawrence Haddad for their leadership in raising the profile and building coalitions for action for better nutrition across the Sustainable Development Goals.
Fiona Godlee is the Editor in Chief of The BMJ. She qualified as a doctor in 1985, trained as a general physician in Cambridge and London, and is a Fellow of the Royal College of Physicians. She has written and lectured on a broad range of issues, including health and the environment. Among other positions, Fiona is an honorary fellow of the Royal College of General Practitioners, a senior visiting fellow at the Institute of Public Health at the University of Cambridge, honorary fellow of the Faculty of Public Health and a by-fellow of King’s College Cambridge. She is on numerous advisory or executive boards, including the UK Health Alliance on Climate Change and the Climate and Health Council.
Rabbi Dr Jonathan Romain, MBE – Writer and Broadcaster
Rabbi, writer and broadcaster, Jonathan Romain is minister of Maidenhead Synagogue in Berkshire. He writes for The Times and The Jewish Chronicle and is often heard on the BBC. His many books include The Jews of England and Faith and Practice: A Guide to Reform Judaism Today.
In 2004, he received the MBE for his pioneering work nationally in helping mixed-faith couples, a theme covered in his book Till Faith Us Do Part (HarperCollins). He is chaplain to the Jewish Police Association, and in 1999 was part of a small group of British Jews invited to an audience with Pope John Paul II. He is also President of the Accord Coalition (which campaigns for inclusive education) and Vice-chair of Dignity in Dying (which campaigns to permit assisted dying in the UK)).
For several years he was a judge for both The Times Preacher of the Year Award and the BBC’s Frank Gillard Awards, and was a member of the BBC’s Standing Conference on Religion and Belief (2009-12). He is a past Chairman of the Assembly of Rabbis UK (2007-9) and is on the Council of St. George’s House, Windsor Castle. His last two books, Confessions of a Rabbi (Biteback) and Inclusive Judaism (Jessica Kingsley) have had wide coverage in the media.
Dr Jane Goodall, DBE, Founder – the Jane Goodall Institute & UN Messenger of Peace
Equipped with little more than a notebook, binoculars, and a fascination with wildlife, Jane Goodall braved a realm of unknowns to give the world a remarkable window into humankind’s closest living relatives the wild chimpanzees of Gombe, western Tanzania.. Through more than 60 years of groundbreaking work, Dr. Jane Goodall has not only shown us the urgent need to protect chimpanzees from extinction; she has also redefined species conservation to include the needs of local people and the environment. Today she works to raise awareness about environmental crises, urging each of us to take positive action on behalf of all living things and planet we share. Through her global humanitarian and environmental programme Roots & Shoots now active in more than 65 countries, young people of all ages are empowered to become involved in hands-on programmes for the community, animals and the environment. www.janegoodall.org.uk www.rootsnshoots.org.uk
Professor Peter Piot, Director of the London School of Hygiene and Tropical Medicine
Internationally renowned virologist Professor Peter Piot is Director of the London School of Hygiene and Tropical Medicine. He is also a Special Advisor to the President of the European Commission on research and innovation for COVID-19. Described once as a rock star virologist, in 1976 he co-discovered the Ebola virus in Zaire while working at the Institute of Tropical Medicine in Antwerp, Belgium, and led research on HIV/AIDS, mostly in sub-Saharan Africa. He has received many awards in recognition of his work and in 2012 published an autobiography, No Time to Lose, which was translated into numerous languages. Earlier this year Professor Piot contracted Covid-19 from which he is now thankfully recovered.
In conversation with our Programme Director, Professor Piot will talk about his life and work.