Owen acts as the co-ordinator of EFI’s international activities and relationships and, with Amira Rahmat, he is working on a plan for how they should be structured and developed. He takes it as read that nearly all of what goes on in EFI is, in some way or another, international. An international and cosmopolitan outlook is intrinsic to the spirit of EFI.
As an academic who looks at how philosophical ideas shape business and commerce, he recognises the importance of the interdisciplinarity that EFI cultivates. In considering the international nature of EFI, he thinks of what Socrates said (according to Plutarch), that he “was not an Athenian or a Greek, but a citizen of the world……… because he did not enclose himself within the limits of Sunium, Taenarum, or the Ceraunian mountains.”. Like Socrates, EFI does not ‘enclose itself within the limits’ of any institution or place.
Owen joined the University of Edinburgh about 7 years ago after 20 years as a government official and 8 years as a representative of the finance industry. He holds a PhD in philosophy and a postgraduate diploma in Social Policy. His first degree was in Chinese and he holds a diploma in Chinese language from the University of Shandong. He is a Fellow of the Higher Education Acadamy and an Honorary Fellow of the Chartered Banker Institute.