Times Columnist & Blair’s Chief Speech Writer
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Philip was once a teacher and a top ranked equity strategist, before becoming Tony Blair’s chief speech writer. For The Times, Philip weighs up the personalities, compromises and agenda of the leading political players, and considers the future for the parties and their leaders. Alongside examining what persuasive communication looks like, he also considers the power of speeches and speechmakers, looking at those that have changed the world, as in his book When They Go Low, We Go High.
Philip Collins is a columnist on The Times and the Evening Standard and the founder and writer-in-chief at The Draft Writers, an agency that produces speeches and narratives for chief executives. He teaches rhetoric and communication at the Blavatnik School of Government in Oxford and the School of Public Policy at the London School of Economics.
Between 2004 and 2007 Philip was both the Chief Speech Writer and the advisor on Culture, Media, and Sport to the Prime Minister Tony Blair. He has also written speeches for Sir Keir Starmer as leader of the Labour party.
Philip has been a columnist at The Times for over a decade and has written for publications including The New Statesman, The Spectator, The Telegraph and Prospect. He is the author of six books, on communication and politics.
Before his time working for the Prime Minister. Philip had spells as the Chair of Trustees at the think tank Demos, Director of the Social Market Foundation and an Equity Strategist at HSBC and Dresdner Kleinwort Benson.
As a political writer and someone who knows all the main players, Philip comments on the state of the nation’s politics in his talks. In particular, he can be a guide to the challenges that a future Labour government will inherit and how it might seek to approach them. As a speech writer and strategic adviser to business on communication, he can also share the vices and virtues of telling a corporate story and can describe what good communication looks like and what goes into achieving it.
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