William Matchett Keynote Speaker

  • Former Detective Inspector working for the Special Branch in the Royal Ulster Constabulary George Cross and Police Service of Northern Ireland.
  • Author of 2016 book "Secret Victory: The Intelligence War that Beat the IRA."
  • Senior Researcher at the Kennedy Institute for conflict prevention.

William Matchett's Biography

Dr William Matchett is a security expert, author and academic.  He was in the Police Service of Northern Ireland, formerly the Royal Ulster Constabulary George Cross, holding the rank of Detective Inspector. For most of his 30-year career he was in the intelligence department – Special Branch.

His international credentials range from training law enforcement organisations in Jakarta and Zagreb on anti-corruption to implementing programmes in Helmand and Baghdad on intelligence-led policing. Currently, he is a Senior Researcher at the Kennedy Institute for conflict prevention.

In 2006 he briefed the Pentagon on a police building programme, going on to lead the training element of this in Iraq and then Afghanistan.  During his tenure, both programmes were widely praised by the US Armed Services Committee.

He has lectured internationally on counter-terrorism and counterinsurgency. In November 2016 he published Secret Victory: The Intelligence War that Beat the IRA.  Many respected observers both sides of the Atlantic see Secret Victory as a significant contribution to increasing our understanding of modern conflict.

Dr William Matchett contends that political correctness, fear of litigation, risk aversion and unrealistic expectations on human rights in recent ‘small wars’ impede the international community’s capacity to counter threats at source. Or what is commonly called, going upstream.  Police organisations today are liberally sensitive obese bureaucracies.  They are not lean or mean enough to get ahead of a threat in an armed conflict in order to stop it.  Neither were they designed for this purpose.

Dr Matchett has also experienced and studied the UK’s inquiry culture and warns against this in historical inquiries focused on recent conflicts.  He explains that these work against service personnel in a post-conflict context, especially where former terrorists become part of a government they had vowed to destroy.  This has been done by failing to frame the correct context; ignoring the weaknesses of memory; and an affliction to hindsight bias.

Read More

Check William Matchett's speaking availability and fees

Interested in booking William Matchett to speak at an event? Please provide your details and we’ll get in touch within 24 hours.

    View our related Speakers

    Bonnie Glaser Speaker
    Exclusive
    Bonnie Glaser
    Director of the China Power Project at CSIS
    Jeremy Hunt Speaker
    Exclusive
    Jeremy Hunt
    Longest serving UK Secretary of State for Health
    Rupert Smith Speaker
    Exclusive
    Rupert Smith
    Former Deputy Supreme Allied Commander Europe for NATO
    Johnny Mercer Speaker
    Johnny Mercer Speaker
    Exclusive
    Johnny Mercer
    Member of Parliament, Veterans’ Minister, Afghanistan Veteran and best-selling author
    Lara Setrakian Speaker
    Exclusive
    Lara Setrakian
    Journalist and Trust Expert
    George Parker Speaker
    Exclusive
    George Parker
    Political Editor at The Financial Times
    Mark Brolin Speaker
    Mark Brolin Speaker
    Exclusive
    Mark Brolin
    Independent British-Swedish political analyst, economist, commentator and author
    Jim O’Neill Speaker
    Exclusive
    Jim O’Neill
    Economist and Policy Maker
    Ed Jones Speaker
    Exclusive
    Ed Jones
    Former Chief of Staff to the UK Foreign Secretary
    Tina Fordham Speaker
    Tina Fordham Speaker
    Exclusive
    Tina Fordham
    Top Global Political Strategist

    We use cookies

    We use cookies and other tracking technologies to improve your browsing experience on our website, to show you personalized content and targeted ads, to analyze our website traffic, and to understand where our visitors are coming from. By browsing our website, you consent to our use of cookies and other tracking technologies.

    Accept Cookies