The Max Watson Memorial Lecture was established in 2015 to commemorate the life of Max Watson (1946–2014), FLJS Board Member and Fellow of Wolfson and St Antony’s Colleges.
Max was a much-valued and enthusiastic member of FLJS, which he joined after helping to steer Ireland’s Central Bank through the Eurozone banking and sovereign debt crisis that struck Ireland in October 2010. He was previously a senior official of the British International Monetary Fund (IMF) and Economic Adviser to the European Commission.
During his time at FLJS, Max helped to establish the FLJS programme on Regulation, Regulators and the Crisis of Law and Government, as part of which he made regular and typically insightful contributions from his experience in practice, including lectures on how to save countries from economic crises; policy briefs on 'regulatory capture' in relation to the financial crisis of 2008; as well as numerous contributions to workshops on European integration and regulatory policy.
Max was also the Founding Director of the Political Economy of Financial Markets programme at St Antony’s College, which he led from 2012 until his premature death in 2014.
Max will be remembered for both his independent intellect and fun-loving spirit, attested to by his distinguished career in public service and his willingness to undertake challenges such as driving a vintage Rolls Royce rally car through Rajasthan.
The Max Watson Memorial Lecture is a yearly lecture series at Wolfson College to recognize Max’s enormous contribution to public service and the intellectual and academic life of Oxford.
Details of past lectures can be viewed from the links on the right. To make nominations for future lecturers, please email firstname.lastname@example.org, stating the name of the proposed speaker and how their work relates to that of the Foundation; in particular, the fields of regulation, Europe, and political economy in which Max distinguished himself.