Will Hutton

Principal of Hertford College, University of Oxford, and Chair of the Big Innovation Centre

Will is a political economist, author and columnist with a career that spans investment banking, BBC radio and TV, newspapers, consultancy, leading think tanks and heading up government commissions.

After six years in the City, he launched his career in journalism as economics editor for the BBC’s Newsnight and later for The Guardian. He went on to become editor of The Observer in 1996, for which he still writes a regular column. From 2000 until 2008 he was CEO of The Work Foundation, stepping down to work as its part time non-executive vice chair. He co-founded the Big Innovation Centre in 2011, which has become one of Britain’s leading innovation think-tanks, soon before joining Hertford College. He has made numerous TV documentaries for the BBC and Channel 4.

Will’s best-known book is probably ‘The State We’re In’ (1995), which was seen at the time as defining a new British economic and social model (that was only very partially developed by the Blair governments), and was one of the top-selling books on political economy since 1945. Since then he has published the best-selling ‘The State to Come’,  ‘The Writing on the Wall: China and the West in the 21st Century’, ‘Them and Us’ and ‘How Good We Can Be’, published in February 2015.

His latest book, written in conjunction with Lord Andrew Adonis, ‘Saving Britain: How We Can Prosper in a New European Future’ was released in June 2018. He headed up a government Review of the Creative Industries in 2007, and on Fair Pay in the Public Sector in 2010/11. He chaired the Independent Review on University fees between 2011 and 2014, and is currently co-leading the BBC’s review on pay transparency.