People Feature

Carolyn Fairbairn

Visiting Fellow
Former Director-General of the Confederation of British Industry

Carolyn joined the CBI as Director-General in November 2015. She spent her early career at McKinsey, before taking on a range of senior leadership roles in the media industry.

As a partner at McKinsey, Carolyn was a leader of the firm’s media practice. As BBC Director of Strategy, she led the BBC’s digital strategy and ran its transmission arm. Carolyn was also a member of the Executive board of ITV for four years.

Carolyn has extensive FTSE board experience as a non-executive director of Lloyds Banking Group, The Vitec Group and Capita plc. She was also a Director of the Competition and Markets Authority, the UK Statistics Authority, and from 2008-11, the Financial Services Authority.

From 1995-97, Carolyn was a member of the Number 10 Policy Unit. She began her career as an economist at the World Bank and then as a journalist for The Economist magazine.

Carolyn holds a double first-class degree in Economics from Cambridge University, an MBA from INSEAD and MA in International Relations from the University of Pennsylvania.

Carolyn is married with three children and lives in Hampshire.

Carolyn Fairbairn