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Geoff Mulgan

Chief Executive, Nesta

Geoff Mulgan has been the Chief Executive of Nesta since 2011. Under his leadership, Nesta has moved out of the public sector to become a charity (in 2012), launched a range of new initiatives in investment, programmes and research and has implemented a new strategy involving partnerships with foundations, governments and companies in the UK and internationally.

From 2004 to 2011 he was the first Chief Executive of the Young Foundation, which became a leading centre for social innovation, combining research, creation of new ventures and practical projects. Between 1997 and 2004 Geoff had various roles in the UK government, including director of the government’s Strategy Unit and head of policy in the Prime Minister’s Office under Tony Blair. Before that, he was the founder and director of the think tank Demos. He has also been a chief adviser to Gordon Brown MP, a lecturer in telecommunications, an investment executive and a reporter on BBC TV and radio.

He is an adviser to many governments around the world. He has also been a board member and co-founder of many organisations, a visiting professor at the London School of Economics, University College London and Melbourne University, and a regular lecturer at the China Executive Leadership Academy. Appointed to the post in 2015, Geoff will continue his role as a senior visiting scholar at Harvard University, in the Ash Center at the Kennedy School, until 2018.

Since 2016, Geoff has been co-chair of a new World Economic Forum group looking at innovation and entrepreneurship in the fourth industrial revolution. His recent books include The Locust and the Bee (Princeton University Press, 2013); The Art of Public Strategy – Mobilizing Power and Knowledge for the Public Good (Oxford University Press, 2008), Good and Bad Power: The Ideals and Betrayals of Government (Penguin, 2006) and Connexity (Harvard Business Press 1998). His next book, to be published by Princeton University Press, is on collective intelligence.

Geoff Mulgan is an acting member of Sitra’s international advisory panel.

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