Rifkind committee on Institute of Commonwealth Studies

Monday 11 January 2021

Committee to conduct an inquiry into the future of Commonwealth studies at the University of London. 

The creation of the committee, chaired by Sir Malcolm Rifkind, former UK foreign secretary, was announced in late 2020 following consultation about the future of the Institute of Commonwealth Studies at the university’s School of Advanced Study.

The full membership of the committee is 

  • Sir Malcolm Rifkind (chair), former UK secretary of state for foreign and Commonwealth affairs
  • Lord Boateng, former British high commissioner to South Africa
  • Dr Anne Therese Gallagher, AO, director general, Commonwealth Foundation
  • Dr Nabeel Goheer, assistant secretary-general, The Commonwealth Secretariat
  • Professor Asha Kanwar, president and CEO, Commonwealth of Learning
  • Mr Michael Kirby AC CMG, former justice of the High Court of Australia
  • Lord Luce, former vice-chancellor, University of Buckingham
  • Dr Joanna Newman, chief executive and secretary-general, The Association of Commonwealth Universities
  • Sir Ronald Sanders, Antigua and Barbuda's ambassador to the US
  • Mr Stephen Twigg, secretary-general, Commonwealth Parliamentary Association

Committee objectives

  1. To consider future provision at the University of London for Commonwealth studies in terms of focus, purpose, structure and functions
  2. To recommend partnerships to support scholarship in this area and ensure its relevance and impact
  3. To identify potential viable sources of sustainable funding beyond the university and short-term research grants


The committee will invite submissions from interested organisations and individuals. These can be submitted directly to the committee via its secretary, Dr Conor Wyer (conor.wyer@sas.ac.uk).

The committee hopes to conclude its work by the end of June 2021.