Clive Bates

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Clive Bates

Clive Bates


The Counterfactual is the personal site for Clive Bates.

He is now establishing my own new enterprise based on thinking, communicating and doing in support of progressive causes – providing a benign but forceful challenge to orthodoxy in environment, energy, public health, sustainability and international development.

Until recently he was a civil servant, a Director General with the Welsh Government then on secondment to the Department of Energy and Climate Change. However, all views on this site are strictly his own – and he does not speak here for past employers.

These are his employers and institutions to date:

  • Department for Energy and Climate Change
  • Welsh Government
  • UNEP Sudan
  • Environment Agency
  • Prime Minister’s Strategy Unit – Cabinet Office
  • ASH – Action on Smoking and Health
  • International Institute for Energy Conservation (Europe)
  • Greenpeace
  • Imperial College
  • IBM (UK) Ltd
  • Emmanuel College, Cambridge

His profile on LinkedIn has a more complete CV


Clive Bates has had a diverse career in the public, private and not-for-profit sectors. He started out with the IT company, IBM, then switched career to work in the environment movement. From 1997-2003 he was Director of Action on Smoking and Health (UK), campaigning to reduce the harms caused by tobacco. In 2003 he joined Prime Minister Blair’s Strategy Unit as a civil servant and worked in senior roles in the public sector and for the United Nations in Sudan. He is now Director of Counterfactual, a consulting and advocacy practice focussed on a pragmatic approach to sustainability and public health.