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 Dr. Johnson is a researcher and analyst focusing on China, Asia, strategic dimensions of the Belt and Road Initiative, and the political use of new media. Previously he led the creation of new degree programs and partnerships in arts, social sciences, and professional studies for a private education group based in Kuala Lumpur and served on the board of the Malaysian-American Commission on Educational Exchange.

He is a graduate of Harvard University (AB honors, Social Studies – international relations and political economy of development) and the University of California, San Diego (MPhil, PhD, History – modern China and East Asia). As a doctoral student he spent three years in China as a Jacob K. Javits fellow and U.S. Fulbright fellow, and was affiliated with Peking University. From 2008 to 2010 Dr. Johnson was departmental lecturer in the history and politics of modern China at the University of Oxford and post-doctoral researcher with the Leverhulme Trust-supported China’s War with Japan programme. He has edited and published several books, including Maoism at the Grassroots (Harvard University Press, 2015), and authored 80+ articles, chapters, reference entries, and online resources. 

 Dr. Johnson has worked at the intersection of research, higher education, public affairs, and professional services for nearly 20 years. He has provided expert perspectives on China's contemporary political-legal environment and economy for government practitioners, consultancies, and NGOs, and is a member of the National Committee on United States-China Relations. He is also an advisor to several academic organizations including the Historical Society for Twentieth-Century China and The PRC History Group, which he also co-founded. 



Professor Bennis is highly regarded as an authority on diplomacy, intelligence and national security, having published widely on these subjects in Arabic and English. His lecture tours span across the world, covering Europe, the Asia-Pacific region, Central Asia, the Middle East and Africa. 

Previously Professor Bennis was the Head of Political and Consular Affairs at the Moroccan Embassy in London (1984-1996), before starting leadership programmes for diplomats, aspiring politicians and others as the CEO of Regent Global Solutions. He was previously director of studies at the Diplomatic Academy of London, where he managed both the London and Paris offices.


Bill Farren Price: Founder of Petroleum Policy Intelligence 

Petroleum Policy Intelligence (PPI) founder and CEO Bill Farren-Price has 20 years experience in the energy industry, working both as a consultant and industry journalist focused on MENA energy and politics. Before establishing PPI in 2010, he led oil research at Medley Global Advisors.

He has held senior correspondent and editorial posts with international news wires including Knight-Ridder Financial News (latterly Bridge News), Agence France-Presse and UPI and edited the Cyprus-based Middle East Economic Survey (MEES).

He regularly contributes articles to industry and general media and is a frequent speaker on the region and its energy economy. He is a graduate of the School of Oriental and African Studies (SOAS) at the University of London.