Ian Goldin

Ian Goldin

Former VP of the World Bank, Prof at University of Oxford

As respected in corporate circles as he is in academia, Dr Ian Goldin is one of the world's foremost experts in globalisation, development and future trends. Goldin has worked for various banks and even advised Nelson Mandela during his career. 

Now primarily focussed on research and his professorship, Goldin is also keen to share his findings and theories through speaking and writing. He has produced numerous influential articles and 17 books.

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About Ian Goldin

Background / History

During his career with the World Bank, Goldin was instrumental in developing the organisations research and strategy agenda and was responsible for overseeing the collaboration between the bank and the UN.

Between 1996 and 2001, Goldin served as the Chief Executive and Managing Director of the Development Bank of Southern Africa, guiding it to success. In addition to his roles within banks during these years, Goldin was an advisor to Nelson Mandela and a member of numerous government boards and committees. He was also appointed as Finance Director for the South African Olympic bid. Prior to this, Goldin had worked as an economist and program director at European banks including the European Bank for Reconstruction and Development.

Goldin has an MA and a Ph.D. from Oxford University. Prior to this, he achieved a BA (Hons) and a BSc from the University of Cape Town and an MSc from the London School of economics.


Ian Goldin has previously held positions including Vice President and Director of Development Policy at the World Bank, making his level of ability and his reputation easily recognisable. The real world experience he gained during his years within the banking systems, working alongside organisations such as the United Nations (UN), has enabled him to become a foremost academic and professor. He is currently the Professor of Globalisation and Development and a Professorial Fellow of Balliol College at Oxford University. In 2006, Goldin became the Director of the Oxford Martin School at the University, the first to occupy the prestigious role. The new schools aim is to address global challenges facing humankind in the 21st Century and a multidisciplinary approach is used, with some 300 scholars contributing. Goldins knowledge regarding global economics and future trends is invaluable and he continues to educate and inspire the next generation of talented individuals with an interest in globalisation, both at Oxford and at other leading universities in his role as a visiting lecturer.

Current / Past Roles & Positions

  • Ian Goldin once part of the management team at the World Bank, holding the position of Vice President between 2003 and 2006. Now concentrating on research, he works predominantly at Oxford University but is in demand as a lecturer and speaker for educational institutes and corporations throughout the world.
  • Director of the Oxford Martin School, University of Oxford
  • Professor of Globalisation and Development at Oxford University
  • Global futurist
  • Explores future trends in technology, science, demography and climate change
  • Examines how governments and corporations will influence future trends and challenges
  • Former Vice President of the World Bank

Awards, Accolades, Achievements & Honours

  • Director James Martin 21st Century School, Oxford University (2006 present)
  • Professorial Fellow - Balliol College, Oxford University
  • Professor of Globalisation and Development - Oxford University
  • Visiting Lecturer at universities throughout the world
  • Vice President - World Bank (2003 - 2006)
  • Director of Development Policy World Bank (2001 - 2003)
  • Chief Executive/Managing Director - Development Bank of Southern Africa (1996 - 2001)
  • Chevalier de lOrdre national du Mrite (for Services to Development) - France (2000)
  • Gold Award for Management - National Productivity Institute (1999)
  • Global Leader for Tomorrow - World Economic Forum (1998)
  • Former advisor to Nelson Mandela (former President of South Africa)
  • Former Principal Economist - European Bank for Reconstruction and Development (EBRD)
  • Former Program Director (Trade, Environment and Sustainable Development) - Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD) Development Centre

Speaking Style

Educational and informal.

Charismatic and knowledgeable, Ian Goldin is an experienced speaker whose insight and experience can help shape successful future policies at all levels.

Speaking Topics

  • How Technology will Shape the next 25 Years
  • 21st Century Challenges for the Global Company
  • Economic Crisis and its Impact
  • Globalization and African Development
  • What does the Future Hold?


Testimonial for Divided Nations: "Ian Goldin's book is a "must read" for those wanting to understand the paradox presented by globalization: a force for good but also a threat to humanity if not properly harnessed. Highly recommended for those seeking ways to ensure globalization works for all." - Pascal Lamy, Director-General, World Trade Organisation.

Testimonial for Divided Nations: "Ian Goldin stylishly describes the Gordian knot of international governance and makes some sensible suggestions on how it might be cut." - Mark Malloch-Brown, former UN Deputy Secretary-General.

Testimonial for Divided Nations: "Goldin is dead right. This could be the best century ever. Or the worst. As we shrink inexorably into a global village, the biggest challenge is how we manage global village governance. Goldin offers clear-headed analysis and practical, pragmatic solutions. A must-read." - Kishore Mahbubani, author of The Great Convergence: Asia, the West, and the Logic of One World.

Testimonial for Divided Nations: "Globalization may need defense, but it also needs reform. The authors tell us the story so far and go on to propose ways and means of getting to a happier ending. The ways identified, based on fine empirical assessment, certainly deserve our serious attention." - Amartya Sen, Professor of Economics and Philosophy, Harvard University.

Testimonial for Divided Nations: "This book is essential reading for anyone interested in globalization and development. It provides important new insights and perspectives into how global flows of finance, trade, migrants, and ideas shape development and advances the debate by identifying urgently needed policy changes for a more inclusive globalization." - Joseph Stiglitz, Professor of Economics, Columbia University.

Testimonial for Divided Nations: "A first-class piece of work and a 'must-read' for those seeking clarity on one of the great issues of our time." - Professor Lord Nicholas Stern, IG Patel Professor of Economics and Government and Chair of the Grantham Research Institute, London School of Economics.

Books By Ian Goldin

  • Making Race: Politics and Economics of Coloured Identity in South Africa (1988)
  • The Economics of Sustainable Development (1995)
  • Globalization for Development: Trade, Finance, Aid, Migration and Policy (Trade & Development) (with Kenneth Reinert) (2007)
  • Exceptional People: How Migration Shaped Our World and Will Define Our Future (with Geoffrey Cameron and Meera Balarajan) (2011)
  • Globalization for Development: Meeting New Challenges (with Kenneth Reinert) (2012)
  • Divided Nations: Why global governance is failing, and what we can do about it (2013)
  • Ian Goldin has written or co-authored 17 well received books and has published more than 50 articles, some of which are listed below:

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