Chris Austin

Country: United Kingdom

Chris Austin, CBE, joined the International Accounting Education Standards Board in 2011 and became chair in January 2015. In January 2019, he stepped down as chair and became an IAESB member.

Mr. Austin is a senior civil servant with 30 years’ experience of international relations, covering international development, Europe, and G8 issues. He has been posted in Africa (four years), Asia (four years) and Washington, DC (three years). He was included in the Queens’ 2017 New Year Honours and awarded the Commander of the British Empire (CBE) for services to international development.

In September 2017, Mr. Austin was appointed Commander, UK Task Force to direct the UK’s civilian and military response to Hurricanes Irma and Maria in the British Overseas Territories. Previously, he served as the UK Department for International Development (DFID) Country Director for Afghanistan, based in Kabul, managing the UK’s £178 million annual support for economic development (2014-2017). Immediately prior, he was Head of the UK’s Stabilisation Unit (reporting jointly to FCO, MoD and DFID), which provides policy and operational support to the UK’s responses to conflict and crises (including Ukraine, Libya, Somalia, and Iraq). In 2013, he was Director, G8, based in the Cabinet Office covering negotiations with G8 partners and engagement with other governments, NGOs, and the private sector on extractives, land governance, and open data.

Previous posts include: Head of Conflict, Humanitarian and Security at DFID (2011-2012), Country Director in Bangladesh (2007-11), and Principal Private Secretary to the Secretary of State (1999-2001).

Mr. Austin was seconded to HM Treasury as head of EU Finances (2003-06) and to the World Bank/International Monetary Fund in the UK Executive Director’s office (1995-99).

He has a BA (Hons) in Modern History (London, 1984), an MBA (Lancaster, 1993) and an MSc in Public Management (Warwick, 2011). He qualified as a member of the Chartered Institute of Public Finance & Accountancy in 2008.


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