Ed Straw


Ed Straw

Visiting Fellow, Advanced Systems Thinking in Practice

The Open University


Ed is a Visiting Research Fellow at the Open University’s Applied Systems Thinking in Practice unit, headed by Professor Ray Ison, with whom he recently co-authored a book on The Hidden Power of Systems Thinking, and its application to governments and governance.

He has seen government from every angle: as a citizen and consumer, adviser to government ministers, Chair of Demos and Relate, as a specialist on government task forces, as a consultant on both the Conservative and Labour government’s public sector reforms, as a ‘moderniser’ for the UK Labour party, and as a partner at PricewaterhouseCoopers (PwC) and Coopers & Lybrand, where he was a global and UK board director. He started life as a civil engineer and developed his systems education at Manchester Business School, Harvard and Oxford universities.

His focus now is on utilising the power of constitutions to produce systemic governance, and on eliminating preferential lobbying.”Ed has spent a working lifetime in organisational performance and development, from his university education to his career in management consultancy and as a partner in Coopers & Lybrand and PwC for 20 years, UK and global board roles, government and political party adviser, chairman of Relate and Demos, public appointments, and publications.