Jose Manuel Barroso
Former Prime Minister of Portugal and former President of the European Commission, José Manuel Durão Barroso oversaw the fight against ebola; the political handling of climate change issues; the crises in the Ukraine and with the Eurozone as well as the EU’s 2012 triumph as winner of the Nobel Peace Prize. His vision is informed, wide-ranging and steeped in a deep understanding of world affairs.
The former Prime Minister of Portugal and former President of the European Commission, Jose Manuel Durao Barroso’s vision is informed, wide-ranging and steeped in a deep understanding of world affairs.
On the speaking circuit, his voice is one of experience and breadth of knowledge.
During his decade as President of the European Commission (from 2004 to 2014), Jose Manuel oversaw the fight against ebola; the political handling of climate change issues; the crises in the Ukraine and with the Eurozone as well as the EU’s 2012 triumph as winner of the Nobel Peace Prize. Prior to this, he served as Portugal’s Prime Minister, from 2002 to 2004.
Jose Manuel began his career in academia, employed in the Law department at the University of Lisbon and in the Department of Political Science of the University of Geneva. He also worked as a visiting professor at the Department of Government and School of Foreign Service in Georgetown University in Washington, D.C. In 1995, he was appointed head of the international relations department of Lusiada at Lisbon University.
Embarking on a political career, Jose was elected President of the PSD Party in Portugal in 1999 and was subsequently re-elected three further times.
During that period, he served as Vice President of the European People's Party, and then took up a position as Portuguese State Secretary for Foreign Affairs and Cooperation, where he was a primary player in the peace accords for Angola in Bicesse in 1991. When he was Minister for Foreign Affairs, he launched the talks with the Indonesian Minister of Foreign Affairs, under the auspices of the Secretary-General of the United Nations, that ultimately led to the independence of East Timor.
Under Jose’s leadership, the PSD won the general election in 2002 and he was appointed Prime Minister of Portugal in April of that year. He remained in office until July 2004 when he was nominated by the European Council and elected by the European Parliament to the position of President of the European Commission.
Jose has been awarded many honorary degrees and has received over 60 decorations, prizes and honours.
A well-respected authority within his field, he has written and published widely on political science, international relations and the European Union, and is an experienced and knowledgeable keynote speaker.