Richard Burge

Richard Burge

Chief Executive and host for our podcast series, Wilton Park Dialogues.

Richard was born in Hong Kong and has spent much of his life outside the UK, having worked in over 50 countries in Europe, Africa, Asia, and the Americas. Appointed in 2009 as Chief Executive at Wilton Park, he is also currently a member of the Council of Durham University, Chair of the Council of Hatfield College, Durham, and a Commissioner to the Commonwealth Scholarship Commission.

From 2005 to 2009, he was a Government Commissioner for Rural Communities and a trustee of the Commonwealth’s Iwokrama Rainforest Centre in Guyana. During this time, Richard was Strategy Director for the African Parks Foundation. He also established Beyond Carbon – a strategic science, technology and policy company.

From 2000 to 2005, he was Chief Executive of the Countryside Alliance, a rural campaigning organisation with 120,000 members. From 1995 to 1999, Richard was the first Director General of the Zoological Society of London responsible for the management of London Zoo, Whipsnade and Europe’s largest conservation science research centre.

Richard worked for the British Council for ten years, beginning in Nigeria with his last post as Head of Africa and Middle East Development Operations.

He read zoology at the University of Durham and was a Commonwealth Scholar at the University of Peradeniya in Sri Lanka.



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conservation, endangered species, law enforcement, terrorism, wildlife crime,

International wildlife crime (WP1423)

1 Dec 2015 Podcast

Discussion about the type of people involved in these crimes, how the links in the chain could be broken and how demand for the animals is tackled. Contributors: Felix Monggae, Deputy Permanent Secretary, Ministry of Environment, Wildlife and Tourism, Government …

Image: CERN

The Big Bang and the interfaces of knowledge: towards a common understanding of Logic? (WP1433)

9 Nov 2015 Conference

A key theme emerging from 2014’s event was the nature and understanding of logic, and this third meeting, in November 2015,  focused on broadening that particular dialogue between scientists, philosophers and theologians. In 2012 and 2014 CERN and Wilton Park …

Davutoglu, Turkish Prime Minister, Wilton Park Address, Turkey, Europe, Islam World, Middle East, religion,

Turkey’s role in responding to regional and global challenges: an ethical and strategic perspective (WP1398)

21 Jan 2015 Conference

The Prime Minister of the Republic of Turkey, HE Mr Ahmet Davutoğlu addressed Turkey’s role in responding to regional and global challenges from an ethical and strategic perspective. The Address was made before a group of London Ambassadors, representatives from …

Beirut – the work of the Centre for Arab Unity Studies

22 Aug 2013 Podcast

This is the second of three podcasts recorded in Beirut. We discuss the renaissance project which involves six factors: Arab unity, democracy, social justice, independent development, freedom of countries in the Arab world and vision of civilisations renewals and what …

Beirut – Lebanon

16 Aug 2013 Podcast

This is the first of three podcasts recorded in Beirut. Inside the city of Beirut. We talk about the internal politics as well as the relationship between Syria and Lebanon and Israel and Lebanon, the Lebanese diaspora and other issues …

Counterfeit and falsified medicines (WP1185)

26 Jul 2013 Podcast

In 2008 in Ghana, 35% of anti-malarias were found to be substandard or counterfeit. To address this, companies that have produced fake products are being named and shamed. Through collaborative work, in 2011, this figure had reduced to below 5%. …

Western Balkans (WP1217)

23 Jul 2013 Podcast

We talk about becoming a member of the European Union and how each country deals with this. We also talk about creating a culture that respects the role of civil society. We ask how the EU supports the development of …

Trident (WP1211)

16 Jul 2013 Podcast

We talk about what Trident is and what the alternatives are. We discuss whether a country like Britain can be a nuclear state by falling under the protection of another nuclear weapon state. Contributors are: Des Browne, Former Secretary of …

The Jubilee Dialogue Europe and the world in 2023 (WP1264)

26 Jun 2013 Conference

This discussion will bring together a small group of international experts to explore political, economic, social and environmental trends over the next ten years and consider what they mean for Britain and Europe. The discussion will be structured around three …

Foreign and Commonwealth Office leadership conference

17 May 2013 Podcast

Brief conversations about public diplomacy with Ambassadors, Commissioners and a Governor. Real issues, real diplomacy, real diplomats. Contributors are: George Edgar, British Ambassador in Uzbekistan Tom Fletcher, British Ambassador in Beirut Timothy Smart, British Ambassador in Madagascar Sir Vincent Fean, …

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