Jon Wilks served for 34 years in the UK Diplomatic Service from 1989, including as British Ambassador to Qatar (2020-2023), Iraq (2017-2019), Oman (2014-2017) and Yemen (2010-2011) and Special Envoy on Syria (2012-2014). Other postings included UAE, Afghanistan, Saudi Arabia, Sudan, Kuwait and Egypt. He is currently Registrar and Azman Hashim Fellow in International Relations at the Oxford Centre for Islamic Studies.
Building on his diplomatic career, his research interests focus on Middle East and North African affairs; Conflict Resolution, Stabilisation and Mediation and wider issues related to the Islamic world and Muslim communities in UK. His ambition is to have positive impact on peace, prosperity and mutual understanding through sharing the knowledge and experience he has gained for the benefit of policy-makers, the rising generation of experts in his fields and anybody who wants to know better and do some good in the countries and regions in which he has served.
He graduated with a MPhil in International Relations at St Antony’s College, Oxford in 2002 and a MA in Middle East Politics at Durham in 2000. He also completed the Higher Command and Staff Course at the Joint Services Command and Staff College, Shrivenham in 2012. He is fluent in Arabic.