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Our experts

The IoD's Policy team oversees the development of the organisation's advocacy work on a full range of issues affecting business from trade to taxation, enterprise to education. 

Here you will find the profiles of the key individuals in the policy and press team. We are always keen to hear the views and experiences of IoD members, so please get in touch with us. 

Allie Renison IoD expert

Allie Renison, Head of EU & Trade Policy

Allie Renison is Head of EU and Trade Policy, and leads on devising recommendations and representing the voice of members on EU policy matters both to Westminster and Whitehall and with European institutions. She provides the link between business and Government on increasing international trade and has authored a number of reports on trends in both trade and trade policy, as well as running a number of trade missions for IoD members around the world every year. She also routinely provides advocacy for the IoD on a range of regulatory issues in Brussels.

Allie joined the IoD in April 2014. Prior to this, she was Research Director at Business for Britain, the campaign focused on renegotiating the UK's relationship with the EU. Allie has previously advised a number of parliamentarians in both Houses on EU legislative issues, with particular focus on trade and employment policy areas. She holds a Masters Degree in the political economy of emerging economies in the post-Soviet space. 

Carum-Basra website

Carum Basra, Corporate Governance Policy Advisor

Carum joined the IoD in August 2019 to work on Corporate Governance policy.  Prior to joining the IoD, Carum served as a Senior Associate at a leading strategic communications consultancy where he advised clients across a broad range of public affairs issues. 

Carum holds a BA in Politics from the University of London and studied International Corporate Governance at Queens University, Belfast, graduating with Distinction in 2019.

Claudia Catelin IoD expert

Claudia Catelin, EU & Trade Policy Advisor

Claudia joined the IoD in August 2017 to work on EU and trade policy. Previously, she worked at the American Chamber of Commerce in Belgium and in the Board of Directors at the European Bank for Reconstruction and Development.

Claudia also formerly worked for Newsfirst as French news editor. Claudia has Australian and British citizenship and a Master of Science in European Studies from the London School of Economics. She is fluent in French and Spanish.

Euan Holmes IoD expert

Euan Holmes, Press Officer

Euan runs the press office to ensure that the views of members are represented in the media, and that the IoD’s research into public policy gains the coverage it merits.

Euan joined the IoD in 2017. Before joining the team, he worked in policy for a leading public health campaign charity. He has a First in English from Clare College, Cambridge.

florent website

Florent Sherifi, External Affairs Manager

Florent joined the IoD in January 2019 and was previously the Advisor to the Director General & Chair. 

Working closely with the Policy Team and the DG, Florent maintains and develops relationships with ministers, parliamentarians, civil servants and other key stakeholders to represent the views of IoD members and communicate our policy research. 

Previously, Florent worked at the BBC supporting the Vice President and Account Director for Western Europe at BBC Studios. He has previous experience as a researcher for a London-based consultancy firm and worked as a Research & Policy Assistant at a national campaigning charity.

Florent studied an MSc in Political Economy of Europe at the London School of Economics.

joe website

Joe Fitzsimons, Head of Education and Skills Policy

Joe joined the Policy Unit in December 2019. In his role, he seeks to promote higher standards in education and a skills system that genuinely prepares people to meet the needs of the business community.

Joe initially joined the IoD in September 2015, starting as a graduate executive at IoD Student before proceeding to lead the department. In this role, he oversaw the Institute's university partnerships and student engagement across the UK, supporting over twenty educational institutions to improve their student engagement and development through training, events and mentorship.

Joe holds a Bachelor’s degree in Business Studies from London South Bank University and is currently completing his Executive MBA at Nottingham Trent University. He also sits on the curriculum advisory board for the school of Business and Enterprise at London South Bank University.

Roger Barker IoD expert

Dr Roger Barker, Director of Policy and Corporate Governance

Dr Barker previously served as the IoD’s Head of Corporate Governance. He is a UK Member of the European Economic and Social Committee (the EU advisory body), Honorary Associate at the Centre for Ethics and Law at University College London and a visiting lecturer at Saïd Business School, Oxford, and Cass Business School, London.

Dr. Barker is the holder of a doctorate from Oxford University and the author of numerous books and articles on corporate governance and board effectiveness, including: ‘Corporate Governance and Investment Management: The Promises and Limitations of the New Financial Economy’ (Edward Elgar, 2017), ‘The Effective Board: Building Individual and Board Success’ (Kogan Page, 2010), and ‘Corporate Governance, Competition, and Political Parties: Explaining Corporate Governance Change in Europe’ (Oxford University Press, 2010). A former investment banker, Dr. Barker spent almost 15 years in a variety of equity research and senior management roles at UBS and Bank Vontobel, both in the UK and Switzerland.

Sophie Breeden IoD expert

Sophie Breeden, Campaigns & Projects Manager

Sophie works across IoD campaigns and projects reporting into both the policy and events departments. At present, much of her work focuses on the Inclusive Business strand of IoD content, and she is the day-to-day manager Campaign Manager for the Mental Health & Wellbeing in the Workplace campaign. 

Sophie is also responsible for the planning and delivery of all policy events and manages all travel and logistics for the policy team as well as content marketing channels for the department.

Sophie is based remotely in Shrewsbury, Shropshire and spends one day a week working from the IoD's West Midlands office. 

Before joining the IoD, Sophie spent a number of years working for a speaker bureau, getting under the skin of the corporate events market. After a short spell in conference production, the policy team and the content-led events offering here at the IoD are what attracted her to the organisation.

Sophie graduated from Royal Holloway, University of London, in 2009, where she read English and Drama.

Tej Parikh IoD expert 

Tej Parikh, Chief Economist

Tej holds a Bachelor’s degree in Economics from University College London, and a Master’s degree in International and Development Economics from Yale University.

Prior to joining the IoD, he worked as an economic analyst at the Bank of England in roles across monetary and financial policy. Subsequently, he moved to Cambodia where he was a journalist focusing on economic and private sector development for a national newspaper. He has since been a freelance political risk consultant and journalist, covering Europe and Asia in particular.

He has published for numerous international media outlets including Foreign Affairs, the Guardian, and The Diplomat, and is currently an active member of London’s Great Debaters Club.