p; The Saudi-British Society Committee Members
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HRH Prince Mohammed bin Nawaf Al-Saud

HRH Prince Mohammed bin Nawaf Al-SaudHRH Prince Mohammed bin Nawaf Al-Saud was born on 22 May 1953 in Riyadh, Saudi Arabia and at present is the Ambassador of the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia to the United Kingdom and Ireland.

Prince Mohammed was educated at The Capital Institute High School in Riyadh. He is a graduate of The School of Foreign Service at Georgetown University, Washington DC and carried out postgraduate studies at the John F Kennedy School of Government, Harvard University. He is President of the Harvard Alumni Association of Saudi Arabia.

Prince Mohammed worked for the Royal Commission for Jubail and Yanbu for two years before transferring to the Ministry of Foreign Affairs where he first worked in the Minister’s Cabinet before being promoted to Inspector General at the Ministry.

In 1995, Prince Mohammed was appointed as Ambassador to Italy and Malta. In 1998 he was elected as President of the Council of Administration for the Islamic Cultural Centre of Italy. He was Dean of the Arab Ambassadors’ Corps.

In December 2005, Prince Mohammed was appointed as Ambassador of The Kingdom of Saudi Arabia to the United Kingdom and Ireland.

Prince Mohammed is married to HH Princess Fadwa bint Khaled bin Abdallah Al-Saud. They have five children.

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Sir Alan Munro, KCMG

Sir Alan MunroSir Alan Munro joined the Diplomatic Service in 1958 on coming down from Clare where he read history. He went to Lebanon to learn Arabic, and subsequently worked in Lebanon, Kuwait, Libya and Brazil as well as in the Foreign Office. He had a spell in the Ministry of Defence looking after military cooperation with Arab countries, including Saudi Arabia, before going to Algeria as ambassador in 1974. He was subsequently Under-Secretary of State for the Middle East and Africa and was British ambassador in Saudi Arabia from 1989 to 1993, a period which coincided with the Kuwait crisis.

Since leaving the Diplomatic Service he has advised a number of firms on the Middle East region. He is chairman of the Saudi-British Society and a vice-chairman of the Arab British Chamber of Commerce. He was a founding member of the Saudi-British Business Council and advises the Ministry of Defence on the UK/Saudi Al Yamamah Economic Offset Programme. He is also a director of Middle East International magazine and writes and broadcasts on Arab issues. He is author of a book, ‘Arab Storm’, on the politics and diplomacy behind the 1990-91 Kuwait crisis, which has just reissued in paperback.

He has also been a governor of Imperial College in London and vice-chairman of the British Red Cross Society.

Sir Alan Munro was awarded the Order of King Abdul Aziz by King Fahd of Saudi Arabia after the Gulf War.

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Sir Derek Plumbly, KCMG

Sir Derek PlumblySir Derek Plumbly has long experience as a diplomat and international official in the Arab world, including three postings in Saudi Arabia. Most recently he was UN Under Secretary General and Special Coordinator in Lebanon. From 2008 to 2011 he chaired an international peace commission in Sudan. Prior to that he was British ambassador first in Riyadh from 2000 to 2003 then in Cairo from 2003 to 2007. He was Director, Middle East and North Africa, in the FCO from 1997 to 2000. His earlier career included postings in New York and Washington, in Riyadh as Deputy Head of Mission from 1998 to 1992 and as First Secretary in Jedda from 1975 to 1977. He speaks Arabic which he studied in Lebanon and Jordan after graduating from Oxford and teaching in Pakistan. He was appointed CMG in the Gulf War honours list and KCMG in 2000.

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Ms Karen Worcester

Mrs Karen WorcesterKaren Worcester is the Managing Director and leads the UK and US tax work for Expatriate Tax Advisory Service Limited, a UK-based tax practice established in 1995. With many clients living outside the UK and with an increasing presence in Saudi Arabia, Karen has been a frequent traveller to Saudi Arabia and the wider Gulf for work and leisure since the 1980s and maintains close personal and professional contacts in the region.

Prior to founding ETASL, Karen trained in audit and then both UK and US expatriate tax at Coopers & Lybrand (now PwC) in their London office, working with UK, US and other nationals living in the UK, and with UK, US and other nationals living abroad, ranging from employees of multi-national companies to individual clients. Karen is a US Enrolled Agent, licensed with unlimited practice rights to represent taxpayers before the Internal Revenue Service.

Karen graduated from University of London with a BSc (Hons) Environmental Science, and then worked at King’s College, London, in the Geography Department for a year on the Land Use Survey of the UK. With continuing memberships, and having served as a Committee member and as a Board Director, of various professional and social entities in the UK and abroad, Karen became the Hon. Treasurer of The Saudi British Society in 2017. Family, gardening and travel are the main interests outside work.

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Mrs Ionis Thompson

Mrs Ionis ThompsonIonis Thompson lived with her husband in Riyadh for a total of 12 years, during the 1970s and early 1990s. While there she wrote "Desert Treks from Riyadh" and "Riyadh Handbook", published by Stacey International.

On her return to London she maintained her interest in Arabia, through the Society for Arabian Studies of which she is also the Honorary Secretary and the Saudi-British Society. As a History graduate, she has a particular interest in Arabian history and archaeology and has taken part in University of London excavations in the region.

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Ms. Sara Alshareef

Sara Alshareef is a UK based researcher, specialising in Women Entrepreneurship in Saudi Arabia. Her passion for the subject originated from her work in women community services programs at Abdul Latif Jameel and at Alsayedah Khadijah Bint Khawilid Center, lobbying for Saudi women’s economic empowerment. She has also worked at International Business Relations at Jeddah Chamber of Commerce. She has been working as an advisory to a number of female executives and businesses.

Sara teaches Business Management in the Middle East at SOAS and International Business and Entrepreneurship at Royal Holloway University of London, where she is currently completing her PhD. She holds a BA in International Business and a MSc in Management from Birkbeck College, University of London. During her studies in the UK she worked at Edge of Arabia/The Crossway Foundation, The Saudi British Joint Business Council and UnLTD for Social Entrepreneurs.

Sara has given talks at events and conferences such as Gulf Research Meeting at Cambridge University, and Opportunity Arabia, an event organised by The Middle East Association. She was also a guest speaker at London School of Economics, Middle East Centre.

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Mr Mu'awiya Derhalli

Mr Mu'awiya DerhalliMr Mu'awiya Derhalli has a Diploma in the Theory and Practice of Education, and won a scholarship to Trinity College, Dublin, where he obtained his MA in Modern History and Political Science. Thereafter he had a variety of careers in many fields: academia, broadcasting, personnel, education, and general management and prepared cross-cultural and country-based (mainly Middle Eastern countries) briefings.

His occupations include:  Lecturer in Arabic and Tutor in University College, Durham University, Presenter, talks producer of The BBC Arabic Service, and Arab countries national days programme producer and interviewer.

Mr Derhalli has occupied a variety of executive positions with the Kuwait Oil Company (BP and Gulf Oil) for sixteen years in Kuwait. They include:  Principal of the Arabic Centre, General Superintendent of Training and Education, Director of Career Development and Personnel Manager (personnel, training, company schools and community affairs) and a member of the Management Committee. He also spent eleven years in the BP Head Office in London in the Personnel department providing University sponsorships, training services for Group and overseas associates.  In addition he is a trustee of the Overseas Student Trust and a member of Sir Peter Parker's Committee.

Mr Derhalli was a deputy Director, Course Coordinator and Director of Middle East briefing programmes for ten years at the Centre for International Briefing: Farnham Castle.

He has published a number of articles and book reviews in English and many short stories and radio programmes in Arabic.  He has visited the Arab countries of the Gulf, for which he provided training services.

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Mr Peter Harrigan

Mr Peter HarriganPeter Harrigan is director of Medina Publishing and its associate imprint, Arabian Publishing.

He is a senior contributor to Aramco World Magazine and author of ‘Riyadh: Heritage and Vision.’ The illustrated book was published in 2016 for Arriyadh Development Authority (ADA) and also produced in Arabic, French and Spanish editions. He is currently working on a book on Addiriyah, the capital of the First Saudi State and a UNESCO World Heritage Site.

He is a frequent visitor to the Kingdom and has been study leader of alumni tours to the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia including Stanford University, University of Washington and World Leaders Symposium.

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Mrs Caroline Montagu

Mrs Caroline MontaguMrs Caroline Montagu, Countess of Sandwich was a business journalist on the Middle East from 1979 and specialised in Saudi Arabia from 1981. In 1985 published Investment in Saudi Arabia, Opportunities for Joint Ventures, funded by COMET (Committee for Middle East Trade), which was the first British in-depth analysis of industrial development and of our EC partners’ positions on Saudi Arabia. In 1987 wrote the European Commission research report entitled: Industrial Development in Saudi Arabia. Mrs Montagu has been writing on Saudi Arabia and on specific Middle Eastern topics for a wide range of publications and consultancies since the mid 1980s. In 1980s she wrote many of the EIU’s publications on Saudi Arabia including editing the flagship Saudi Arabia Monitor. In 1991 she wrote The Private Sector in Saudi Arabia, a COMET report. In 2001 she wrote Saudi Arabia: On the Road to Reform, funded by the DTI. In 2002 and 2003 she wrote reports for the MOD Economic Offset Department on Saudi British Offset and other topics and later in 2003 she wrote on Saudi women’s NGOs for the British Council. In 2005 co-authored report for the Foreign & Commonwealth Office on Needs and Capacities of the NGOs in Saudi Arabia.

Mrs Montagu is currently specialising in social and women’s issues in Saudi Arabia and studying for MA (London) on Middle East Politics & Society. She has a MA from Cambridge University.

Mrs Montagu is currently a Committee member of the Saudi British Society, a member of the Arab-British Chamber of Commerce’s Consultative Committee on the Middle East; a member of the Saudi British Joint Business Council and a senior adviser for Women in Business International.

Mrs Montagu is currently a Member of the Heritage Lottery Fund’s South West Committee and a Member of the HHA Tourism & Commercial Development Committee. In addition, she is a Patron of the Beaminster Festival, Bridport CAB and President of the Dorset Natural History & Archaeological Society.

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Dr Asma Siddiki

Dr Asma SiddikiDr. Siddiki has been involved in the education and higher education sectors in the GCC region for the past twenty years. She most notably held leadership roles at corporate and academic institutions, in particular working with universities in their early stages of development focusing extensively on student services, institutional effectiveness, curriculum development, organizational development, and global institutional partnerships.

Dr Siddiki is currently serving as Senior Director for Special Projects with Emaar Economic City (EEC) in King Abdullah Economic City (KAEC), Saudi Arbaia, where her main commitment is to serve as Dean for Outreach, Enrollment and Student Affairs at the Prince Mohammed Bin Salman College of Business and Entrepreneurship (MBSC). Prior to joining MBSC and EEC, Dr. Siddiki was a Higher Education Management Consultant as well as the Founder and CEO of Oxbridge Learning Limited (previously knows as Alpha1Education), an education company specialized in developing and delivering educational programs for youth, such as its flagship programme, Oxbridge Summers, a summer school hosted at the Universities of Oxford and Cambridge in the UK for secondary school students. Earlier, Dr. Siddiki was Director, Global Higher Education at Huron Consulting Group based in Dubai; Associate Dean for Development and Director of Degree Programs at the Dubai School of Government (in association with Harvard Kennedy School). She also served at Effat University (then College) in Jeddah, Saudi Arabia, as Vice Dean, leading the Offices of Academic Affairs as well as Student Affairs. Dr. Siddiki was a Senior Fulbright Scholar in 2004 at the University of Massachusetts, Amherst, focusing on Civic Engagement as it relates to the student experience. She has taught as Tutor at the University of Oxford, and Assistant Professor at King Abdul Aziz University and Effat University.

Dr. Siddiki is the Founder and Chair of the non-profit Simply Heuristic, serves on the Saudi-British Society Committee and the International Relations Committee (IRC) at the Jeddah Chamber of Commerce and Industry, amongst other initiatives for cross-cultural dialogue and understanding, was selected for the Vital Voices VV Grow Fellowship for female entrepreneurs (2014), and has been recognized for her professional achievements and contributions to society by the World Economic Forum, as a Young Global Leader (Class of 2014).

Dr. Asma Siddiki was educated in England, Switzerland and Saudi Arabia. She received her Doctoral degree (DPhil) as well as her Master’s (MSt) from the University of Oxford, and her Bachelor’s (BA) from King Abdul Aziz University.

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Mr Ali Abbas Syed

Mr Syed Ali AbbasMr Ali Abbas Syed leads the principal investment initiatives, capital raising and deal origination in Middle East for Zeus Caps – a financial advisory specialist. Prior to Zeus, Mr. Syed worked as an investment banker in the City having worked with ABN AMRO and Morgan Stanley. Mr Syed also worked in Saudi Arabia for several years with the accounting firm Ernst & Young and still maintains close contacts in the region.

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Dr. Mark C. Thompson

Dr. Mark C. Thompson is Assistant Professor of Middle East Studies at King Fahd University of Petroleum and Minerals (KFUPM), Dhahran, Saudi Arabia, where he has been teaching undergraduate courses in International Relations and Globalization since 2012. He is also Senior Associate Fellow at King Faisal Center for Research and Islamic Studies (KFCRIS) in Riyadh.

Mark has lived and worked intermittently in Saudi Arabia since 2001 for diverse institutions such as Saudi Arabian Airlines, the Saudi Arabian National Guard, and Prince Sultan University. Mark holds a Ph.D. from the Institute of Arab & Islamic Studies, University of Exeter, UK, where he also taught a course on Political Reform in the Gulf. Mark also runs his own consultancy business that offers an objective perspective of contemporary Saudi socio-political issues.

His principal research areas are Saudi socio-political development and societal transformation and he has published on topics such as Saudi youth issues and challenges facing Saudi women leaders in publications such as the Journal of Arabian Studies; Asian Affairs; Middle Eastern Studies; and Gulf Affairs. In addition, he published a book with I.B. Tauris “Saudi Arabia and the Path to Political Change: National Dialogue and Civil Society” (2014). Mark is also the co-editor of the IB Tauris book entitled “Policy-Making in the GCC: State, Citizens and Institutions” (2017) with Dr. Neil Quilliam from Chatham House based on their Gulf Research Meeting workshop in 2016 as well as providing a chapter on Saudi Arabia for the Palgrave Macmillan book on “Public Brain Power: Civil Society and Resource Management” (2017). Mark has recently completed a book for Cambridge University Press “Being Young Male and Saudi: Identity and Politics in a Globalized Kingdom” about societal issues and change from the perspective of young Saudi men. In addition, Mark is assisting Professor Tim Niblock update his Routledge book “Saudi Arabia: Power Legitimacy and Survival” (2006) for a second edition to be published in 2019.

Mark also makes numerous presentations at international conferences, workshops and seminars.

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