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Ex-Cabinet minister joins law firm

Alexander takes advisory role at Pinsent Masons

Douglas AlexanderInternational law firm Pinsent Masons has hired former Labour cabinet minister Douglas Alexander as a strategic adviser.

Mr Alexander, who was a casualty of last year’s rout of Labour in the General Election, will have an immediate role supporting the firm and its clients over issues around the forthcoming EU referendum.

He held high-ranking ministerial positions in several departments, including International Development, Transport, Scotland and Europe. He also served as the UK’s Governor to the World Bank.

He lost his Paisley and Renfrewshire South seat last May to the SNP’s 20-year-old student Mhairi Black.

Pinsent Masons has more than 500 lawyers and support staff based in Scotland, working between Glasgow, Edinburgh and Aberdeen.

Mr Alexander will work with the senior leadership team at the firm to help inform and support debate among its clients on doing business responsibly.

His remit will include engaging with UK-based and international clients as they look to ensure their businesses are connected to their communities, are tackling poverty and inequality through investment, and are developing ever more prevalent and robust business ethics and compliance practices.

He will also help develop business strategies and responses to geopolitical issues that impact on business.  In the short term this will include helping shape the firm’s engagement with clients around the referendum on Britain’s membership of the European Union in June. He will play an active part in engaging with the firm’s clients at board level to help identify and interpret key issues, including the role of business in informing public debate.

Having established a presence in Brussels last year to help develop insights around the future of Europe, Pinsent Masons is now set to roll out a series of events to support clients in identifying the challenges and opportunities arising from change in Europe.

The first event, which will be chaired by Mr Alexander, will take place on 17 March.

He will split his time between Pinsent Masons and his roles as a Senior Fellow at Harvard University, visiting professor at King’s College, London and advising U2 frontman Bono on global poverty.

Richard Foley, senior partner at Pinsent Masons, said: “Douglas has a stellar reputation as one of the most capable and engaging politicians of his generation. At the heart of Douglas’ remit with us is the issue of responsible business and how organisations can rebuild bridges into society at a time when public trust is low.

“In short, it will be about helping executives do business the right way and for the right reasons. He will also bring his experience to bear on some of the major issues that businesses are currently facing.  First and foremost on that agenda right now is how to engage with the debate around Europe’s future, and there are few better-placed to provide perspectives on that than Douglas.”

Mr Alexander said: “The firm has a reputation for innovation not just in how it serves its clients, but in how it strives to deliver positive change in the global communities in which it operates. It is a firm that seems to think differently to the mainstream and that is what attracted me to them. I look forward to working with Richard and the senior leadership team at the firm.”

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