John Simpson

British foreign affairs correspondent, BBC News World Affairs and journalist, John Simpson has been bringing the UK news from more than 120 countries. Having a reputation for bringing the nation major scoops, John has reported on many of the globe's most historical moments. One of the most loved TV veterans, John is a consummate professional, bringing warmth and fluidity to any event. 

BBC News World Affairs editor, John Simpson is one of the UK’s most lauded and loved TV news veterans.

John’s career has spanned over four decades, and he has become one of the most revered figures in international journalism in the world.

You did an incredible job, it was much appreciated and I would just like to say a very big thank you.
The Liverpool Cotton Association Ltd

A Cambridge University English graduate, journalism was on John’s horizon from his student days as editor of campus publication Granta.

Joining the BBC as a trainee journalist in 1966, John quickly earned a reputation as steadfast, hard-nosed and determined.

His ambition and wide-ranging interests, along with his intelligence and analytical mind, took him on a journalistic journey from one ground-breaking event to another earth-shattering global episode. Before he knew it, John was knee-deep in war zones; face to face with controversial world leaders and challenging dictators with a camera, a microphone and probing questions.

Jobs as Diplomatic Editor and presenter of the Nine O'clock News were followed by a role as a correspondent in South Africa, Brussels and Dublin, and then, in 1988, John was appointed World Affairs Editor.

Reporting from war-torn Afghanistan; from central Belgrade during the Kosovo crisis, and determined to stay in Serbia even when authorities expelled him, John’s tenacity and speed made him one of the most admired reporters from almost every international trouble-zone.

John’s life has hung in the balance on more than one occasion. Ordered to kneel in the road at gunpoint by a Palestinian soldier; dodging bullets in Tiananmen Square, and standing a few yards away from the detonation of a 'friendly fire' anti-tank bomb in Iraq where he witnessed the death of his translator, John is no stranger to real fear.

John has also presented current and political affairs program Simpson's World, and in 1990 he was made associate editor of 'The Spectator' magazine. After six years in the post John moved into freelance journalism and wrote a foreign affairs column for The Sunday Telegraph, as well as a handful of books, including The Wars Against Saddam; Not Quite World’s End; News from No Man’s Land, and A Mad World, My Masters.

John’s career has been peppered with luminous awards from every established organisation that hands out media awards. In 1991 and 2000 he was named Royal Television Society Journalist of the Year; in 1991 he received a CBE; he was been awarded 3 BAFTAs, a Golden Nymph Award for his reporting of Ayatollah Khomeini's return to Iran; Audio Book of the Year; an International Emmy Award for News Coverage for his report on the fall of Kabul for BBC's Ten O'Clock News and a special jury's award at the Bayeux War Correspondents Awards in 2002.

For further information or to book John Simpson, in association with his management company, call us on +44 (0)20 7607 7070 or email

What people said about John Simpson

Your laudatory speech has made a great impression on the audience present in the studio as well as on our viewers at home.
WDR Germany
There was a buzz of excitement all day. From the calls and notes we've had it's clear that delegates thoroughly enjoyed your session.
The Marketing & Media Conference
Our postbag was full the next day and the feedback has been very positive with the audience finding the debate extremely stimulating.
Intelligence Squared
He talks with passion and genuine enthusiasm about the things he's witnessed, resulting in people hanging on to his every word.
Conference in Dusseldorf
Staff and clients not only enjoyed John's amusing anecdotes, they found the more serious topics he covered captivating.
Petrofac Petroleum
I found Mr Simpson a humble, warm, engaging and extremely articulate man. He was able to make a marked impression.
HealthTech and Medicines KTN
He was really engaging, took time to talk to guests at his table, arrived in plenty of time and didn't rush out the door after!
Thomson Reuters
Very good, relaxed but authoritative demeanor.
Pantheon Private Equity
Read more testimonials for John Simpson

Other speakers you might like

Clive Coleman

Clive Coleman

Chief legal correspondent, barrister, broadcaster & comedy script writer, Clive writes & delivers witty…
Mark Rice-Oxley

Mark Rice-Oxley

Mark Rice-Oxley is a news editor at the Guardian specialising in foreign news
Daisy McAndrew

Daisy McAndrew

The former Economics Editor and Chief Political Correspondent of ITV News, Daisy McAndrew's knowledgeable…
Rik Ferguson

Rik Ferguson

Researcher, writer, filmmaker and presenter Rik Ferguson is the Vice President of Security Research at…
Nick Clegg

Nick Clegg

Nick Clegg was a Liberal Democrat MP for Sheffield Hallam from 2007-2015, he also served as Deputy Prime…