Jo Johnson Keynote Speaker
- Keynote speaker who was a cabinet Minister under three different Prime Ministers
- Chairman of TES Global & Access Creative College
- Senior Fellow at the Harvard Kennedy School
Jo Johnson's Biography
Jo Johnson is a keynote speaker who has been a politician, an author, a journalist and an investment banker. He was MP for Orpington from 2010-2019 and held key ministerial offices in each of the last three Conservative Governments under David Cameron, Theresa May and Boris Johnson, respectively. His areas of expertise lie in international trade and investment, globalisation and corporate governance.
He is a non executive director of TES Global, the digital education business providing resources, teacher recruitment, training and software for schools worldwide. Jo is also Chairman of Access Creative College, the UK’s largest provider of specialist education for the creative industries.
He is a Senior Fellow at the Harvard Kennedy School and President’s Professorial Fellow at King’s College, London, one of the UK’s leading research universities.
Member of the Council and non-executive director of the Dyson Institute of Engineering and Technology; Chairman, International of ApplyBoard, recently named by Deloitte as Canada’s fastest growing technology company; and a board member of Tech Nation, the growth platform for tech scale-ups.
He is also amongst the youngest life members of the Privy Council, a Governor of the Ditchley Foundation and a Member of the European Council on Foreign Relations.
His experience inside and outside of politics gives him a unique perspective to comment on government policy, economics and well as the internal machinations of the British Government. In September 2019, Johnson resigned from the Cabinet citing “unresolvable tension” between his “family loyalty and the national interest”. He campaigned for the Remain side in the Brexit Referendum and is known to be at odds with the Prime Minister and his brother, Boris’, views on the European Union.
His roles in Government have included Minister of State for Universities, Science, Research and Innovation, Minister of State for Transport, and Minister of State for the Cabinet Office.
In the two years leading to the 2015 General Election, he worked directly for Prime Minister David Cameron as Head of the 10 Downing Street Policy Unit and Chair of the Conservative Policy Board. In this role, he ran the Prime Minister’s team of policy advisers and was responsible, amongst other duties, for writing the Conservative Party’s manifesto for the 2015 General Election.
Prior to his election to Parliament in 2010, Jo spent 13 years at the Financial Times and won a number of awards for his journalism. These came from a variety of organisations, including the Foreign Press Association, the Society of Publishers in Asia and The Indian Express’s Excellence in Journalist Awards.
He worked at the FT in a variety of roles, including as Associate Editor & Editor of The Lex Column, widely known as one of the most influential positions in British financial journalist. He also spent time as the South Asia Bureau Chief and as Paris Correspondent.
Prior to joining the FT He worked as an investment banker at Deutsche Bank, and has edited and written several books. These include Reconnecting Britain and India: Ideas for an Enhanced Partnership (Academic Foundation 2011, with Dr Rajiv Kumar), and The Man who Tried to Buy the World (Penguin, 2003).
Jo was a scholar at Balliol College, Oxford, from which received a first class degree in Modern History in 1994. He also has an MBA from INSEAD and a licence spéciale from the Institut d’Etudes Européennes of the Université Libre de Bruxelles, where he was a Wiener-Anspach Fellow. In 2020, the announcement was made of Johnson’s elevation to the House of Lords as part of the 2019 Dissolution Honours. He became Baron Johnson of Marylebone.