about paul vallely

Paul Vallely CMG FRSA


Paul Vallely is a writer and consultant on religion,  international development, and business ethics.

He is the author of the internationally-acclaimed best-selling biography Pope Francis - Untying the Knots.

Its sequel Pope Francis - The Struggle for the Soul of Catholicism is published by Bloomsbury in September 2015.

He is currently working on a history of philanthropy to be published by Bloomsbury in 2018.

He is Visiting Professor in Public Ethics and Media at the University of Chester and Senior Honorary Fellow at the Global Development Institute at the University of Manchester.

He has worked in newspapers, broadcasting, with aid agencies, government and church organisations for more than two decades. He has produced award-winning reports from more than 30 countries in the developing world.

International development

He was seconded to Tony Blair’s Commission for Africa and was co-author of its final report. He worked with Bob Geldof, deciding how to spend the money raised by Live Aid, advising at Live 8 and lobbying the negotiators and heads of government at the Gleneagles G8 summit with Geldof and Bono. He has also chaired the Catholic Institute for International Relations (now Progressio) and advised Christian Aid and Cafod.

Ethics & Enterprise

He has been chair of Traidcraft, the fair trade organization which markets Third World goods in the UK and pays fair prices to their producers. He advises Waitrose supermarkets as a member of its board of Corporate Social Responsibility.

He has been an adviser to the Archbishop of Canterbury and an editorial adviser to the Catholic Bishops Conference of England and Wales. He is an expert in Catholic Social Teaching - 100 years of attempts to find a third way between unregulated capitalism and state-directed socialism - which offers insights for new thinking in the 21st century. 

Writing and editing

He is a former executive editor of the Independent on Sunday and leader-writer on The Independent. He edited the Sunday Times News Review. He is now a consultant on policy and communications and writes for the New York Times, the Guardian, the Sunday Times, and the Church Times where he has a weekly column on political, social, and cultural issues. He is a director of The Tablet.

He has written a number of books the latest of which is Pope Francis - The Struggle for the Soul of Catholicism. Others include Pope Francis - Untying the Knots and Bad Samaritans: First World Ethics and Third World Debt and Promised Lands, a study of land reform in the Philippines, Brazil and Eritrea. He is the editor of The New Politics: Catholic Social Teaching for the 21st century and A Place of Redemption: a Christian approach to punishment and prison.



Paul Vallely was created a Companion of St Michael and St George (CMG) "for services to journalism and to the developing world" in the Queen’s Birthday Honours on 17 June 2006.

He is an Honorary Research Fellow in the School of Arts, Histories and Cultures at the University of Manchester.

He was nominated for the UN Media Peace Prize for his reports from 30 countries in the developing world.

He was commended as International Reporter of the Year for his coverage of the Ethiopian famine of 1984/85

He is a Fellow of the Royal Society of Arts


For more details see Who's Who

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