PR & Public Affairs guru delivers Leeds Beckett guest lecture
The free, public event entitled, ‘A new era in communication; the science of engagement’, was part of the annual Leeds Business School lecture series, and was sponsored by Yorkshire Bank.
Colin, who is CEO of global PR firm Weber Shandwick in the UK and Europe, Middle East and Africa (EMEA) and has nearly 30 years’ experience spanning domestic and international PR, political and public affairs campaigns, commented: “With all the changes in marketing and the media these are exciting and changing times for the communications industry.”
During his lecture Colin discussed the Science of Engagement, a ground-breaking initiative created by Weber Shandwick, born out of a need to better understand engagement and to help understand what it is that drives human engagement. The initiative was developed with leading figures from the fields of neuroscience, psychology and anthropology.
Colin joined Weber Shandwick in 1995, rising to lead the public affairs practice in London in 1997, followed by the UK region in 2003 before becoming CEO of the EMEA network and a member of the Global Management team.
After several years in the private and not-for-profit sector PR, Colin joined the British Labour Party's Communications Team in 1987 and was quickly promoted to Head of Press & Broadcasting. He served as deputy to the then Communications Director, Peter Mandelson.
In 1992 he became the first Communications Director of The Prince of Wales Business Leaders’ Forum, the international non-governmental organisation founded and still today presided over by Prince Charles and supported by many leading international firms. Colin managed Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR) communications for the Forum globally and worked with leading international firms on the communication of their own CSR activities.
Paul Houghton, Principal Lecturer in Leeds Beckett's Faculty of Business and Law, added: “Colin has been tasked with a range of international campaigns and initiatives throughout his career with Weber Shandwick, as well as for high profile figures ranging from Prince Charles to political leaders. This lecture gave a fascinating insight into the fast-paced world of public relations and public affairs, and closed with an opportunity to ask Colin questions about his work and his career.”