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Sir David Bell


Fellow type
Honorary Fellow

Honorary Fellow, Alumnus 1965 History


Sir David Bell is a non executive director of the Economist. He retired as a director of Pearson plc and Chairman of the Financial Times at the end of 2009 after thirteen years on the Board.

David was appointed Chief Executive of the Financial Times in 1993 and became Chairman in 1996.  In July 1998, he was also appointed Pearson’s Director for People with responsibility for the recruitment, motivation, development and reward of employees across the Pearson Group & in June 2003, he became Chairman of Pearson Inc in New York.

In addition to this, he is Chairman of Sadler’s Wells, Chair of Council, Roehampton University, Chairman of the London Transport Museum, Chairman of the Transformation Trust, Chairman, Rare Recruitment, Chair of Bath Mozartfest, Chair of Cambridge University Press, Chairman of Chapel Street Community Schools Trust and Chair of The Institute of War & Peace Reporting Europe. He is also a trustee of the Esmee Fairbairn Foundation, Pearson Group Pension, Worth School, Cornerstone Property Assets, the Bureau for Investigative Journalism, Girl Hub and the Centre for the Study of Financial Innovation {CSFI,} and a member of the Honorary Council of the Royal National Theatre.

In 2011-2012, David was an Assessor on the Leveson Inquiry into the Culture, Practice and Ethics of the Press. Between 1995-2002 he was Chairman of the Millennium Bridge Trust, responsible for conceiving the first new bridge across the Thames in the centre of London for 100 years and between 2002-2012 he was Chairman of the national homelessness charity, Crisis.

David was educated at Cambridge University and the University of Pennsylvania is married with three children and lives in Islington. David received his knighthood for services to industry, the arts and charity.